Top Set vs a Continuation Bet, what do you do here?

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DECISION POINT: In a Cash Game, preflop the UTG player raises and you call from the Button with 9♥9♠. The Blinds fold and it’s heads-up to the flop. The flop comes 9♦5♣2♠. The UTG player makes a continuation bet. Action is on you, what do you do?

PRO ANSWER: After calling a standard preflop raise from a player Under the Gun, we hit top set on a dry and scattered flop and face a continuation bet from our opponent.

When deciding how best to extract value with your big hands, there are several factors to consider, including number of opponents, board texture, position and stack depth.

Slowplaying tends to be more profitable against fewer opponents (ideally just one), on dryer flops and when in position. All of those are applicable in this hand.

We also want to consider stack depth, as slowplaying is more viable when standard betting will result in an all-in by the river. When stacks are deeper, we often have to put in a raise at some point in order to stack our opponent.

Continued below...

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Note that given our opponent’s stack size, they will be all-in by the river if standard sized bets happen on the turn and river. We do not need to put in a raise in order to stack this opponent.

Overall, this is a highly favorable situation for slowplaying our top set. We should simply call this flop bet in position. Raising would show less profit in the long run.

Calling is the best option.

How would you play it?
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