Money is not the most important thing in the world. Love is. Fortunately,
I love money (Jackie Mason)
4-betting for value and as a semibluff
Sounds easy: Just get aces, bet, he 3-bet, you 4-bet, and he goes all-in.
You have at least 82% against any hand - a regular ATM. With aces it is
easy! The only thing you have to consider is how often your opponent 5-bet
shoves different hands. If he only shove very good hands, like aces and
kings then he probably is going to fold 'all the time' and it might be
better to just call with the aces. But most players will shove (and should
shove) a range like: JJ+ and AKo+ and if it is from a steal positions
their shoving range usually include 99+ and AJs+ So as a general rule you
should always 4-bet aces for value - unless there are special
What about a hand like kings? Just get it in as well, of course. You are
behind against aces, but against everything else you have at least 65%
equity. Against a range of JJ+ and Ako the cowboys sits on 62,6% equity.
But you probably all ready knew that getting it in with aces and kings is
not bad... So let's move on:
Big slick. Most people feel fine getting it in with Ak suited and unsuited
- and in general it is fine. But it is not necessarily for value! That all
depends on the opponents range for getting it in. The reason most players - with good reason - just 4-bet get it in with AK is to avoid mistakes and also to have some 4-bets (other than kings and aces) in their range. With AK in your hand the opponents combination of the hands you really fear(aces where you have 5% ouch, and kings where you have 30%) is reduced from 12 to 6 combinations! So usually they won't have it... Against a typical range like JJ+ and Ako+ big slick has 40,5% When you factor in that players sometimes 5-bet with lesser hands and the money already in the pot (from bet and 3-bet) 4-betting with AK is a nobrainer for most players. Especially out of position! In position it might be better to
just call! This is what Balugawhale recommends in his 3-bet seminar (his real name is god eh I mean Andrew Seidman). The idea is to float any flop and of course to stick it in on any king or ace. I have experimented a bit with this and I'll get back to it in the next 4-bet blog. A good rule of thumb: If you have seen villain stick it in with AQ - go ahead and 4-bet get it in. If you haven't still four bet out of position but call in position (keeping all his dominated hands in).
Queens! For most players getting it in (and on) with nice ladies is standard. Again it depends on his 5-bet shoving range! Let's see: If he has his usual range of JJ+ and AK+ we have 47% equity which is fine given the dead money
in the pot. But if he never get's it in light, calling (only in position as always) might be better (again recommended by god). Still against most opponents - especially in steal positions and with dynamics - 4-betting queens and getting it in against a 5-bet is for value.
JJ and the real trouble start. When you 4-bet JJ you usually really hope he folds! Unless you are really slugging it out in a blind battle or something: calling a shove with JJ is never pleasant. Still if you have 4-bet JJ you usually have to call - do the math yourself :)
What about tens? nines? ace-queen? It is getting tougher. As we go down to the medium value range. Here there has to be specific dynamics: tilted image, extremely aggressive game, maniacplayer, wild blindbattles, cutoff-button dynamics etc. for this to be good. In other words: unless you think your opponent is out of line with his 3-bets it is probably best to just call (in position only) or fold. As always you can 4-bet bluff but it will be hard to fold when he shoves...
Another line is to 4-bet shove (huge overbet) with trouble hands like 99-JJ - this very popular in a scenario like: MP opens, you call on the button with say TT, one of the blinds squeezes, the original raiser folds and you shove!
Next up: Practical hands with 4-bets.
Happy new year everybody!