Flopped a Pair with a Flush Draw, what do you do here?

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DECISION POINT:
In a Cash Game, five players call the big blind and you call from the Button with J♦6♦. Both Blinds call and the Flop comes Q♦J♥7♦. The Small Blind bets and the Big Blind calls. It folds around to you. What do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: Calling on the flop will be more profitable than raising with this draw. The SB's hand range when leading into 7 players postflop is very narrow. That means that we have little fold equity on a raise. It also means that a decent portion of the time we have fewer than 14 outs.

Note how our 14 outs here can easily be reduced to 9 when the Small Blind has a set or two pair, without even taking into account the Big Blind player. If we had something like KdTd, our outs would be much more solid.

Continued below...

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In either case though, we are getting compelling direct pot odds to draw one card and we have position, so we should call this flop.

If our opponents had wide hand ranges, then we would advocate raising. But with this many players seeing the flop, the SB's leading range should be quite strong, so raising has much less value as a semi-bluff.

If we raise, we will rarely win the pot uncontested.

Calling is the best play.

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


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