T♠T♣ on the Button, what do you do here?

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In a Tournament where blinds are 2,000/4,000 it gets folded to the Cutoff who limps into the pot. You are on the Button with Pocket Tens and action is on you. What do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: We have pocket tens on the Button and 15BBs to start the hand. It folds around to the Cutoff who limps for 4,000 chips (1BB). 15 big blinds is a very awkward stack to play, and often our goal with this stack is to look for spots where we can reshove over players who are opening wide hand ranges and try to accumulate chips in uncontested pots.

In this situation we have a premium hand against a limper who should have a very wide hand range. We are clearly ahead of any reasonable hand range without some sort of player specific read, so our choice really comes down to should we make a smaller non all-in raise or shove our stack in.

If we choose to shove, we will be risking 60k to win 10k. That is an increase of just under 20% of our stack uncontested when all of our opponents fold. If we make a smaller raise to say 16-20k preflop we may get some increased action, but we open ourselves up to opponents realizing their equity with a lot of the overcard type hands they could have here, such as QJo with two over cards or even hands like A5s with one over card.

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If we shove, our most likely outcome is an increase in our stack from 60k to 70k. If we raise to 16k instead of shoving, we potentially win another 12k at the expense of sometimes allowing our opponent to realize their equity.

Given our stack size and the amount of money in the pot it doesn’t seem worth taking this extra risk for a fairly small return on our overall investment.

Moving all-in is the best play.

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