A♠A♦ vs a Check-Raise, what do you do here?
DECISION POINT: In a live $2-5 game it folds to the player in Hijack and they raise to $25. The Cutoff folds and you reraise from the Button to $80 with A♠A♦. The Blinds fold and Hijacks calls. Your opponent checks the Q♦3♦7♦ flop. You lead out for $125 and Hijack raises to $400. Action is on you, what do you do here?
PRO ANSWER: In a $2-5 cash game we are dealt pocket aces on the Button. It folds to the Hijack who raises to $25. The Cutoff folds and action is on us. A standard reraise here is 3x the total previous raise. We are both quite deep stacked so making a slightly larger raise here makes sense and we make it $80. It folds back around to the Hijack who calls and we’re off to the flop.
The flop is Qd3d7d. We have an overpair plus the nut flush draw with our Ad and the Hijack checks to us. Monotone flops (flops with all of one suit) are a bit of a unique situation in poker. It is often correct to make a smaller continuation bet of 20-25% of the pot on monotone boards. A small c-bet size is effective on these boards, since hands that will fold to a c-bet do not contain a diamond and will fold to nearly any bet size.
Our opponent will also be calling with a mostly capped range which allows us to bet much larger on the turn and put a tremendous amount of pressure on them. In this particular instance we are unaware of this nuance in monotone board play and our much larger continuation bet of $125 gets check-raised to $400.
In this particular situation, even when we are behind we have 9 outs and often have 11 outs (9 flush cards and 2 aces). We are also ahead of a lot of the hands our opponent would do this with, including hands like KdQx and other strong one pair hands with or without a flush draw. Our hand is simply too strong to fold so it is a matter of if calling or just moving all-in now.
While it is unlikely given the pot odds that our opponent would fold if we moved all-in, it still makes a lot of sense to keep their range as wide as possible here. If our opponent is making some sort of bluff with a hand like KdJx or similar they can continue bluffing the turn.
Calling is the best play.
How would you play it?
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