A♥K♠ vs a Donk Bet, what do you do here?

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After you 3-bet preflop with A♥K♠, the player in the Small Blind cold calls and leads into you on this flop. What do you do?

PRO ANSWER: Many players make the mistake of exerting aggression in situations where they would benefit more by keeping their opponent’s hand range wide. This is one of those cases. If the Small Blind is leading out with a Kx hand (especially KQ, KJ, KT), we would like to keep those hands in their range on future streets.

If we raise on this flop, we are likely to fold out many of the hands in the Small Blinds's range that are worse than our AK. Raising this flop would have the effect of limiting the SB’s continuing range to mostly hands that beat our hand.

Instead, we can often get more chips in on future streets from those hands that we beat. We can accomplish that by calling in position with the intention of not folding on later streets. Whether we raise or call, we will lose all of our chips to sets or AA (and we’d be correct to do so).

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Calling allows us to win additional chips from those worse hands, which makes this situation much more profitable overall.

We should not consider folding top pair top kicker since the preflop cold call from the Small Blind player represents more than 10% of the effective stack and the flop stack to pot ratio (SPR) is only around 2. Good one pair hands such as ours will show a profit in the long run against the Small Blind's range.

Calling is the best play.

How would you play it?
Share your answer in the comments below!

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