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Poker Hand of the Week: 6/12/14

You Decide What's The Best Play


Give us your opinion in the comments section below for your chance at winning a six-month Card Player magazine digital subscription.

Ask any group of poker players how you played your hand and they’ll come up with dozens of different opinions. That’s just the nature of the game.

Each week, Card Player will select a hand from the high-stakes, big buy-in poker world, break it down and show that there’s more than one way to get the job done.

The Scenario

There are five players remaining in a mid-stakes tournament. You’ve already outlasted a huge field and are guaranteed a big payday. With 1,220,000, you are in fourth place. There is one short stack still in the tournament.

The blinds are 20,000-40,000 with a 5,000 ante, giving you just over 30 big blinds to work with. You look down at AClub Suit ASpade Suit in the cutoff and raise to 80,000.

The big blind, an aggressive older gentlemen with a lot of experience, makes the call. He started the hand with 1,385,000, having you barely covered. The flop is KDiamond Suit 5Club Suit 3Diamond Suit and your opponent checks.

You bet 85,000 and he calls. The turn is the QClub Suit and once again, he checks. You bet 160,000 and he check-raises to 415,000. You call and the river is the 2Club Suit.

Your opponent checks. You have 635,000 remaining and your opponent has 800,000.

The Questions

Do you bet or check behind? If betting, how much? Can you get your opponent to call with a worse hand? What makes this a good opportunity to go for a value bet? Why would your opponent check-raise the turn and then shut down on the river? If checking, what kind of hands do you expect your opponent to turn over?

Dominik NitscheWhat Actually Happened

In the World Series of Poker $1,000 no-limit hold’em event, Dominik Nitsche opted to check behind holding AClub SuitASpade Suit on a board reading KDiamond Suit5Club Suit3Diamond SuitQClub Suit2Club Suit.

His opponent, Bob Bounahra, showed down KSpade SuitJClub Suit and Nitsche took the pot. Bounahara doubled up on the very next hand and went on to finish in third place, earning $145,229. Nitsche went on to defeat Dave D’Alesandro heads-up to earn his third WSOP bracelet and the $335,659 first-place prize.

What would you have done and why? Let us know in the comments section below and try not to be results oriented. The best answer will receive a six-month Card Player magazine digital subscription.



over 7 years ago

In this particular situation, I would have preferred to see another bet made by Dominik on the river. He made a nice min-raise pre-flop and continued with a good bet on the flop, which many opponents would have interpreted as a c-bet. However, getting raised on the turn is a little scary, seeing as how our opponent could easily have raised in that spot with KQ. However, when Bob checks the river to us, that is a sign of weakness and slowing down. At this point, it is fairly easy to rule out two pair, seeing as how an opponent would have bet that for value. It is very difficult to put an opponent on a flush in this spot. Most people would have check raised the turn, then continued with a bet on the river with a flush. I believe moving all-in is a positive ev play because our opponent has only represented a king up to this point and nothing else. I believe moving all in would at least make my opponent think for a while, maybe even talking himself into a call, considering the chip stacks, as well as the amount of chips already in the pot.


over 7 years ago

The problem is this: what hand that we beat is going to x/r the turn and then x/c the river? We showed our hand to basically be K8+, Maybe Q8+ since we called the turn x/r.

If we bet and he re-raises all-in, do we like our hand enough to call it all off? So we are left with pushing all-in (which we're only getting called by better probably depending on our image and villain) or raising and hoping to god he doesn't re-raise.

I think checking it down and figuring out what in the world this villain is going to x/r the turn with is the best play.


over 7 years ago

I think when he cr's the turn he is trying to rep either AK or KQ, but does KQ check the river here? Does he really give you a bd flush? I think KQ moves in on the river like 90% of the time and they other 10% he ends up calling anyway. And if he had some JTc or some weird hand like that he is betting the river too.

So i dont think there is a question you have the best hand here , I think its more of can a worse hand call me and for how much. If you bet 200 on the river would he just toss top pair?

I think the real question is what do you do if he c/r's again. I dont think anyone that could be called experienced would do that with a hand thats not a bluff at this point in the torny