Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Putting the Cowboys to bed

I was playing well and looking for a profitable night at the cash tables last night on Bodog when I was dealt K-K UTG.
I raised 5xs the BB to $2.50. I prefer to raise this amount because I don't want a bunch of callers ruining my top pair. You would think that this would be a red flag to other players at the table, but you'd be wrong. I get called by hands like Q-10 more often than you think.
Anyway, I did get one caller, and then the guy on the button raises to $10.
At these levels, pre-flop re-raises are rare, so they always mean something.
I chose to call because I had a player behind me yet to act. If he shoved, my thinking is I could fold, given that both of them had full stacks, as did I.
He just calls.

The flop is all unders, one suit, clubs, and the re-raiser insta-pushes.

Given that he just pushed rather than went for a bet, I put him on Q-Q. Lately I've been very successful sniffing out overbets and figuring that they usually mean my opponent has a hand but not a great hand. In other words, he doesn't have a set or a flush here, and given his re-raise, he probably had a high pocket pair. So I thought he'd value bet with A-A.
OK, so I was wrong, he did have A-A. I did have the Kc for extra outs just in case, but he of course had the Ac, and me and the third player both got stacked.

Yes, I realize:
• I was calling, not jamming myself
• It was a suited board
• The odds were not good
Maybe I'm just a donkey.

And so here is my problem. Harrington in his Vol. I cash game book says to never fold K-K. I have folded K-K before, preflop, and been right. I consider great laydowns a key reason why I'm a winning player. Recently I've lost a lot of money three times in the last two months when I've had K-K and the other guy had A-A.

Three other times that night I saw someone lose their stack pre-flop when he had K-K and the other person had A-A.

I'm starting to believe Harrington is wrong. I'm starting to believe there are times you need to lay down K-K pre-flop. All three times I had a good feeling that the other person had A-A but I refused to believe it because folding K-K pre-flop is so weak. I have saved money in the past folding K-K pre-flop.
I realize poker is situational, but what do you all think about this? And does anyone fold in my above situation?


pokerpeaker said...

Hi. Just to be clear, Harrington is talking about K-K pre-flop, which is what I'm talking about here. There are many situations that will lead you to lay down K-K or even A-A post-flop. But you know that already.

Mondogarage said...

I've folded KK preflop exactly once, and that was in a live tourney where the action made a read of AA the only read (and correct).

Folding KK online pf is something I find impossible to do, if for no other reason than the huge number of overly LAGgy players online.

But if I were in higher buyin MTTs, or cash above $10 buyins, I'd have to re-evaluate. My thought as it pertains to this online is that even if you think he has AA, it's online, there is only one hand he can possibly have ahead of you, and there's not a lot at stake -- the opportunity cost of folding at that level is too high.

If you're playing for stacks of hundreds, that's a whole different equation, if you can make a dead on read.

SirFWALGMan said...

I used to fold KK pre-flop a lot.. nowadays it depends but I think if your pretty sure your opponent has AA then you should fold it. KK fold post flop is even harder on that kind of flop but it is only one pair.

$mokkee said...

i really don't mind your call in this spot after the flop with your overpair and 2nd nut flush draw.

wtf is that guy thinking with that overshove tho? jeezuz

WillWonka said...

In my humble opinion, I find it very hard to fold KK (as Dan and others have said). Don't let the past affect your future hands. Treat each hand new and of course the odds of somebody have AA is rare.

I will say that at levles that you are playing (which I am playing the same levels), I see plenty of squeeze type plays. I probably would have pushed here preflop (depending on stack sizes, etc..)

Having said that, if you feel that you are behind, don't feel too bad about folding. While it may or may not be the right thing to do, from a mental standpoint, it can really help if you think (and especially if you were right) you were behind and fold.