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You Decide #56 Answer Sheet

So, here we go. Some people asked how I would choose the "right move." This is a good question. The right move is the move in which you'll make the most money or lose the least. In these hands, you'll see it fairly clearly, with the exception of Hand 1. So, let's get on with the show and I'll explain as we go.

Hand #1 - The way I see it, this is a mandatory fold with AA. My luckbox opponent's small bet on the KJ2 flop could have been a value bet or a weak semi-bluff. That is why I raised 5x. I wanted to take down the hand right away, and the only one calling a 5x raise is an inferior, dominated hand like AK or KQ. If my opponent has the goods, like KJ or 22, he's going to push all-in. Admittedly, he might push with AK too, but I held two Aces so that hand combination was very unlikely. The only possible draw is an OESD, so I don't have to fear a push with a drawing hand in this situation. These were deep stacks, so I inevitably decided that I had to fold. AA is a great hand, but its preflop value shouldn't blind you to the situation at hand. So, if you guessed Fold, I'm giving you a win. Technically, I didn't see my opponents' hand, but we won't have that problem in any of the other hands. Answer: Fold.

Hand #2 - In this case, I folded, but the other players ended up all-in. I flopped the Jack-high flush in a PLO8 hand where no low is likely, but when I checked to set up a check-raise, the other two players bet big and then raised all-in. Jack-high flushes are scary hands in PLO. They can easily be the type of hands that lose your entire stack. You hit your flush, you push hard, and you run into a Q-high flush or a K- or A-high flush. In this particular instance, it felt like I had to be behind, so I folded. The board was A26, all spades. When the players flipped their cards, Sonny had 2447, with no spades, and Papa had AK45, with the 4 and 5 of spades. I was way ahead to win half the pot, facing a freaking weak low and a lower flush. But, I folded and I'm still not sure if my fold was correct. Still, if you chose Call, you made the right call, since you'd be rolling in that casheesh while I'm busy folding. Answer: Call.

Hand #3 - We were heads up with an uber aggressive BB after flopping a Jack-high flush draw in a PLO8 game. A low didn't look likely. After turning our flush (and ensuring no low), Talen raised all-in. MeanHappy was correct that the play in this hand didn't make sense since he raised more than pot. I do not recall the exact situation now, but I think he may've bet 750 on the turn and then raised all-in for 2k+ on the river. Most of you just played along with the information available, and I thank you for that. Unfortunately, Raj, my outsourced blog writer (Jordan hasn't written a blog entry since late 2005), must be slacking on the editingggg. Whatever the case, I made the call with my Jack-high flush. My opponent showed Ts Qh Jd Kd, for a straight, and we took down the pot. In this instance, heads up, I was not as concerned about a higher flush. I played the hand very passively, so it was also a lot more likely that my opponent was willing to go to war with a set or, as it turned out, a straight. Hell, I could even see him get uber aggressive after flopping top two pair if he reads me as a weak calling station. Answer: Call.

Hand #4 - After flopping a very hidden top and bottom two pair on a 973 board, I checked, only to have one player overbet the pot huge and the other player push all-in. I opted to fold, since the action made little sense. If the first guy didn't have a set, the second guy did. Alas, I gave them too much credit. The original bettor, Nord had JJ. The raiser, Moose had TT. If I called I would have won the hand, but I folded, probably overcautious, although I am still shocked at my opponents' willingness to go broke with a small overpair. Regardless, calling would've netted the most profit. Answer: Call.

After reviewing the hands and the submissions, I'd like to congratulate the only person who suggested Fold, Call, Call, Call. Congratulations to my Vegas roommate, PokerPeaker. For his trouble, Peaker wins $11! Peaker, I won a $10 45-person SNG last night on Full Tilt, so I'll let you decide how to get the dough. $11 from Stars, FullTilt, or some random table game in Vegas. Any of those work for me.

That's it for today. As I mentioned, I won a 45-person SNG last night for $160 profit at FullTilt. The timing was perfect, since I was down to about $50 in that account. I've still been missing all of the BBTwo games, but hopefully that will change soon. Life has just been too hectic.

Until next time, make mine poker!

posted by Jordan @ 2:21 PM,


At 11:06 AM, Blogger Joe (aka Unimpressed) said...

I didn't get a chance to read your blog yesterday, because I didn't hit the crapper (nothing about your blog, that's just when I get a lot of my blog reading done- TMI?).

First, determining the "right" play by how much you win or don't lose is results orientated thinking and not considering actually making the "correct" plays.

Anyway, maybe I'm too cautious because but I said fold to everyone.

Hand#1: Easy fold. The only two hands (maybe) that they push all in with AND you have beat are AK and QQ (QQ is a maybe). KK/JJ/KJ all pushing hands. KK is unlikely in that spot as he would have re-raised you to make sure the other players were gone.

Hand#2: I'm not an omaha player so... but I disagree that a call was "right". Omaha is supposed to be a game of nuts or draws to the nuts, right? Here you have the third nuts with no re-draws. Heck even the guy with AK45 had a draw to the absolute nut high and nut low.

Hand#3: again, omaha, so I can see a call there. After the turn you said you were heads up, but you weren't. It was Talen, you, and homey on the button. So it's three handed with a J-high flush.. what happened to Homey? I'm assuming he folded after you called. I might fold there, but that' cause I don't play omaha.

Hand#4: Again, I think a fold isn't a wrong play. Again, you'd think player 2 has a set or even 97 for two pair. They just didn't.

At 11:35 AM, Blogger lj said...

i really disagree on the fold in hand 1. i get not wanting to get too attached to a hand, but i think there's a very good chance, based on play i've seen in these ftp tournaments, that dude has a pair of kings. there is a chance, obv, that he has set or two pair, but i can't see laying it down.

At 11:57 AM, Blogger SirFWALGMan said...

Your a tard if you call with J high flush on that board drawing to at best half the pot. You said the flop was A26.. and yet you said no low was possible? I guess you mean in your hand? anyway.. it does not matter what the result was.. it matters that you did the right thing and you did. No way you ever call there.

At 11:58 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Unimpressed, the term "correct play" is something not worth arguing. I'm not talking about the correct play in an absolute sense, I'm talking about it in an omniscient sense, where you know what your opponent has and what the outcome of the hand will be. It's a false idea, admittedly, but its a freakin' $11 blog contest that I came up with on the fly.

LJ, what Kx hand is pushing here? AK is a possibility, but if I have two Aces, its unlikely. KQ is a possibility, but I think KQ is more likely to call my reraise. Still, AK and KQ are possibilities. What else? KJ has me beat. KT? I seriously doubt he's playing KT or anything less like this. His actions looked a lot more like a winning hand. I still say fold.

But hey, people, in the end, I'm open to other opinions. That's all I express here. My opinion. So, feel free to disagree and feel free to let me know. I may defend my points, but I'll always listen to your logic and consider it openly.

At 12:13 PM, Blogger Unknown said...


Jordan, you could also just take the money off what I owe you for the hotel room...but if you want to transfer it, send it to Full Tilt, and I'll use it for Riverchasers tommorow. I can't play the Mook tonight unfortuately.

I still agree with all my decisions. People need to remember the gap concept: You must have a much better hand to call a raise than make one yourself. This concept has saved me mucho bucks over time. If you push with A-A, that's fine, you have fold equity. But if you're CALLING a huge over the top raise, you should fold. LJ is a terrific player but I disagree with her here. BTW, I probably call if it's later in the tournament. It's too early now for a call.

Thanks man!

At 12:37 PM, Blogger Gydyon said...

I disagree in 1, 2, and 3.

I go broke with Aces in that spot, especially since you raised to 1000. When you made that raise you committed yourself to the hand. Go with it.

On two and three, Omaha is a game of the nuts, O8 even more so. If the play was that bad that your non-nut flushes were good for at least half the pot, god bless ya. But the optimal play in both spots (ignoring the play up to that point, as both hands are easy preflop folds in or out of position)is to fold. You should be beat, or at best dodging outs for half of the pot.

This is also the danger of checking expecting to check-raise -- betting out on 2 and 4 defines the hand much better.

At 12:42 PM, Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

That is the most ridiculous $11 I've ever seen won by anybody man.

In hand #1, I think the fold is easily defensible, so I won't go crazy about that answer, even though I would say it is probably 80%+ likely that you are ahead here. People push allin with any top pair or even middle pair and a draw, etc. all the time early in big tournaments like this, and you keep asking what he could be pushing with that is behind your AA. I think probably a good 80%+ of the hands he would push with here are behind your AA. I just wish we had a way of seeing what he had. Sure, 20% of the time he flips two pair or a set or something, but in reality I don't think he played his hand like many people with sets or big two pairs play it, and that leads to my 80% figure above. I wish I played against people who fold AA so readily like that (though I'm not surprised to hear that peaker recommended the fold -- at least the guy practices what he preaches).

The two O8 hands are both such obvious fuggups that I highly doubt it's even worth trying to explain here, but again how does a guy win $11 for recommending calling in both situations, and how does anybody classify calling as the "right" play in these spots is completely beyond me. In Hand #2, with just a Jack-high flush facing all that action, and with a made low already on the board that you have no part of, that is not even worth discussing. The only "right" move in that spot is to go and find Dr. Brown's Delorean, go back in time and fold that hand preflop. What garbage. Any call before, during or after the flop cannot be justified by any logic or any experience of playing Omaha. Anyone who said "call" to this hand should have to pay Jordan the $11 for not knowing what the kcuf is going on in their life. Just wow on that one.

Hand #3 is similar but I suppose not quite as painfully obvious a fold. Your Jack-high flush is obviously the stuff that donkeys draw to and bet with, but at least here (1) there is no low on the board taking half your winnings away automatically, and (2) without the raising like in the previous hand, your opponent could easily be betting in the hopes that you did not make a flush. Someone raising once the flush is obviously already out there like in Hand #2 makes it the most obvious fold in the world, but here in Hand #3 I will just say it is a "pretty clear" fold. Following the advice to call here is not great and sounds to me like someone who just hasn't played enough Omaha to know how often Jack-high flushes get beat. But it's nowhere near as bad as Hand #2 which is basically the textbook definition of Fold. But even here, the "right" move is surely to go back in time and fold that garbajj hand preflop, and not to stack off with just a Jack-high flush here either.

Hand #4 is I think the only hand where you're giving credit to the actually "right" play, using your own definition as the one designed to make the most or lose the least money over time. That one too is easily defensible as a fold, but given the donkish play in these mtts, I too got the impression that several others did of one top pair donk and one overpair donk. Turned out to be two middle overpair donks, always a great situation. But I think the call there is the slightly better play.

I submit that you need to post better definition of the rules and the criteria if you're going to offer up these $11 bounties like this. Giving money to someone who recommended a call in Hand #2 alone is just mind boggling.

Great post as always. These hands are always a lot of fun to review and analyze, and then to write pompous one-sided Monday morning quarterback opinions about after the fact.

At 1:33 PM, Blogger KajaPoker said...

Raj is really slacking off. I didn't even know Hand 3 was heads-up until the reveal. Of course you call there with a made flush against a single opponent and no possible low. Of course...

At 1:40 PM, Blogger Jordan said...

I'll say it again slowly so some of you can understand a bit better.

1. I made the contest.

2. The "correct answer" based on all of YOUR definitions would be "it depends." Poker is a game of limitless variables.

And finally:

3. The point of the contest is not to test who the greatest player is. These were all difficult decisions, that I think could go either way. The point is to show how seemingly random the results were. In most of the cases, I like my folds, but I would've profited more by calling in the last three hands.

And as an additional point:

4. Should I not offer free money in the future?

At 2:08 PM, Blogger NewinNov said...

Late to the party as usual. Please continue to offer free money and as it is your blog, feel free to set the rules or lack of them.

I would have lost your contest.

Hand #1. Fold. It is too early to go broke with AA and you still have 2/3's of your starting stack. You did raise to 165 and the BB had to call an additional 135 with 255 already in the pot. 135 is 4.5% of his starting stack. Some people will take chances early for a small portion of the their stack for the implied odds. Yes, he could have Kx or Jx but more likely two pair or a set. So we agree.

Hand #2. Fold. I can't ignore your terrible starting hand for a high/low game but enough said. As mentioned before, omaha, especially Hi/Lo is a game of the nuts and I'm not going broke with a flush that can be beat by two higher flush cards. Granted the other two players could both be going low, but with the blinds only at 25/50 and considering your stack size, not necessary to gamble at this point. You might be set for half of the point but you don't even have a draw to the low. We disagree, I have a lower risk tolerance in this situation.

Hand #3. Fold. Another weak starting hand but a bit better than hand #2. The overbet is fishy and it is a borderline decision and really depends on your read and previous play. I'll play it safe with 57 BB remaining but don't fault you for going with your read. We disagree but not strongly.

Hand #4. Call. Normally when two people ahead of me go to war before it is my turn to act, I bow out gracefully and initially thought that at least one of the players might have a set but I would gamble in this situation, putting one player on an OESD and one on a overpair. Again, no real need to gamble, but I would in this case.

At 5:27 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Jordan, we need to talk. :)

I'm all for taking a lot of cheap flops in PLO8 tourneys, but that post-flop stuff is just filthy.

Perhaps you're overthinking these.


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