A♣K♦ vs UTG Raise and a Call, what do you do here?

AK vs UTG Raise-optimized.gif


DECISION POINT:
In a Tournament, the UTG+1 player raises and it folds around to the Cutoff who calls. The Button folds. You are in the Small Blind with A♣K♦. Action is on you, what do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: In a tournament, a player from early position raises, the player in the cutoff seat calls and action is on you with AK in the small blind. What do you do?

When determining the most profitable way to play a hand, you must consider certain factors that reduce a hand’s value. Big broadway hands like AK have value preflop and often make top pair postflop.

The value in making top pair goes down when facing multiple opponents and when out of position. In this situation, both are true, so calling in an attempt to hit postflop dramatically reduces the value of this hand.

Continued below...

Live Banner 300x250.png


Reraising with this hand allows you to sometimes win an uncontested pot preflop. When you don’t you will often have thinned the field to one opponent on the flop, which makes continuation betting far more profitable than in multiway pots.

Also, when you do hit the flop, your hand is far more likely to win at showdown versus one opponent compared to two opponents.

Calling in this spot is not a good play by default. Your hand is well ahead of your opponents’ hand ranges and reraising will maximize value on the hand.

Reraising is the best play.

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