Decision Made

I received the following response from Duke on my post titled Decisions. I had posted a detailed scenario and asked for people to send me their reasoning behind the decision they would make.

Well, as a self proclaimed level two player this is a tough decision. The aggressive side says you have a monster starting hand and you go for it. However, that being said there is the rational side that says look before you leap. Based on the fact that Peter went all in is not the problem. He is a weak player and the $46 wouldn’t do much to hurt my stack. I look to Tom next as he is the one that will be acting after me. He likes the action so I would assume that this call for all his chips will be a no-brainer for him. Anthony is a passive player that calls too many hands so I put him on some small suited connectors like 9-10 or 8-9. So the only two unknowns in my opinion are Action and Brooke. Now with Actions ups and downs and “all over the place” style he is the X Factor. Brooke, being a solid player, is a legit threat. However, since she calls Actions “all-in” instantly I put her on Q’s or better or at worst A-Q suited. Action, I put on a total bluff or at best A-weak kicker. The other players mentioned earlier have small pairs or high connectors, with the possibility of two suited cards looking for a flush. Now, since I am certain that at least two of the players have an ace in their hand and there are sure to be over cards I would have to reluctantly let the hand go. I am only in $10 and since I have grinded out the slow and steady win, I say patience is the best bet. I know that is not the “cool, sexy” drama filled TV highlight decision but it is my style. If the bet were even half the amount I would be in for sure.

My critique is just my opinion and I welcome anyone else to share their opinion. The first point where I differ from Duke is that this is not a tough decision. This is clearly a fold which is the decision Duke reached. There would be nothing aggressive about making this call. Aggressive play involves taking the initiative and putting your opponents in a position where they are forced to make difficult decisions. In this scenario you are left with calling for all your chips or folding.

Peter going all-in is a problem for a player with pocket jacks. He is a weak passive calling station and for him to move all-in after you have raised definitely lets you know you are beat. He has a pocket pair larger than jacks. I am sure Duke was discounting his hand because he only has $46. Many of these older calling stations that are weak passive will limp in with aces or kings in hopes of getting action because when they raise everyone folds and it kills the action.

Tom has called $46 cold after Peter put the raise in and on the heels of your $10 raise so his call is an interesting one to say the least. He plays too many hands so he could be on any pocket pair, medium suited connectors or even a big ace like AK. The thought that Tom will probably get sucked in if you make the call is a good one. If you fold his odds of calling go down. I do not make it a no-brainer.


I agree with Duke that Anthony makes too many calls and could be on a hand like JT in this situation for $46. He obviously does not have a huge hand as he only makes the call. The fact that Anthony announces “Call” is probably false bravado and he is trying to make his hand seem stronger than it is.

Action Jackson moving all-in is really just a smoke screen and has very little value on the hand other than to raise the bet to $700. Action Jackson has some sort of playable hand and he is not the type to call $46. He would move all-in with any hand that was worth a call here. A suited ace would be enough for Action Jackson in this spot. A pair of nines would be just as likely.

Brooke is the big problem in this hand. She did not act when it was her turn originally so we are unable to gauge if she would have opened for a raise under the gun. That piece of information would be very helpful. A good tight player would be aware of the players behind her and know that the original raiser is a very good player and could join the hand. My thoughts would revolve around the possibility of Brooke calling all-in for $500 with AK. I find it very unlikely that Brooke would call with AK here. If she did call with AK I do not believe it would be done quickly. I simply feel Brooke has a bigger pair than our hero.

Because Action Jackson and our hero both have more chips than Brooke and Tom there will be a side pot between Action Jackson and our hero. The side pot will be $240 and I feel our hero is a favorite to win the side pot against Action Jackson. This is probably a 60% to 40% hand and the equity of the side pot would be $144.

The main pot and all the side pots will be enormous and calculating equity will be tough. If we call we have to believe Tom will call 90% of the time and Anthony will call 95% of the time. This will make Brooke playing for about $2400. Assuming Brooke has us dominated leaves us with equity of around $280 from the pots we are in against Brooke. Brooke has equity of around $1200 if anyone was wondering.

Our equity of $424 to make a call of $610 is definitely not enough to make this call. Had Brooke folded the hand we would have been able to make this call.

Congratulations Duke on doing a great job of analyzing the hand.

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