Alexey del_boski analyzed a small blind vs big blind 3-bet pot. He decided to bet three barrels as a bluff, despite the fact that the runout did not please him. Poker coach Alexey Zavo took a look at the situation and provided comments.

There are not many hands on the opponent. Stats are 27/19, fold to 3-bet is 50. Alexey also noticed that the opponent narrowly 3-bet with BB. In one of the hands, when Alexey opened with MP, the opponent did not re-raise with JJ. In general, the opponent is rather on the passive and careful side.


To be honest, Alexey (with in this hand) doesn't use GTO Trainer or Flopzilla to analyze hands. He'll try to describe the range like this:

Top of the range:

  • AQx, AJx, ATx and suited aces. Maybe ATx will be underweight here, or they might even fold entirely preflop.

Medium-strength hands:

  • 99, TT, JJ, QQ

Other hands:

  • Kxs – KQ, KJ, KT, K9, K8
  • Qxs – QJ, QT
  • Jxs – JT, J9
  • Connectors – 98s, 87s, 76s, 65s, 54s, 43s
  • Weak pocket pairs – 22, 33. Maybe there are other pairs with some weight left.


When Alexey saw the flop, he decided that his hand was well suited for bluffing.

He does not block flush draws and backdoor flush draws. Meanwhile, he can eliminate stronger hands than his and hands that have some kind of equity against him. For example, weak Kings with hearts or diamonds.

Alexey knew that such a bet will be called by KQ, KJ, KT and other hands of this type. So he thought in advance about which turn cards he would bet and how much for. The opponent, of course, doesn't muck all their pairs either.

Turn +

The best card came, plus a backdoor flush draw.

KQ, KJ, KT, QJ are now unlikely to fold to a bet. It's possible that flush draws on connectors won't fold either, but it's hard for Alexey to say. However, the opponent may fold some higher hands – AQ, AJ, AT.

Alexey also thought that he would knock out QQ, JJ, TT. He thinks they won't feel comfortable calling this turn. Maybe they won't put all their weight into a fold, but it seems like this is enough for the bet to be positive. And, if the opponent also has offsuit AK, AQ, then Alexey also knocks them out and clears outs for himself.

Alexey blocks the top of the range (AQx, AJx) and is not too afraid of getting shoved on.

River +

The decision to bluff the river came quite quickly to Alexey. Although, even on the turn, he thought that the third Ace was almost the worst card in the deck. However, no flush draws have been hit, so he can get some of the automatic folds from the missed draws.

Also, Alexey will be honest, he thought he'd force his opponent to fold some of his full houses. 99 and 88, if the opponent still reached them. Yes, Alexey plays a little for value – only quads and maybe full houses with some frequency. That's how he would play with them.

But Alexey's thoughts turned out to be wrong.

His opponent showed him a full house with , and Alexey came to the conclusion that, most likely, a full house is not possible here. As he wrote at the beginning, his opponent seemed pretty nitty. So, Alexey thought he could knock out such a hand. He thinks at these limits, online poker players still don't understand that sometimes their strong hands aren't as strong as they think they are.

In a hand like this, Alexey would continue to bet with hands similar to his. Hands not blocking folds to flush draws, for example, but he would not bluff his own flush draws here.

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The Coach's Analysis

Alexey Zavo // play cards. U.A.

Overall the hand was played well. Alexey Zavo would like to add that it makes sense to reason and analyze based on your value range.


Overall, well played. Alexey Zavo will add that with his 3-bet, hero knocks out hands such as QTo, Q9o, JTo and J9o. That is, a lot of weaker top pair hits. Therefore, Alexey Zavo would call such a hand more often.


Hero has a trip advantage since the BB has offsuit Ax hands with low kickers in the 3-bet range. A lot of AK and AQ. More TT through KK. In addition, all Broadway cards from the SB range missed the flop. Alexey Zavo will build a continuation bet strategy by betting 1/3 with the entire range.

Turn – Block bet 1/3

The BB range still has an advantage in trips and pairs (TT to KK). All of these hands would like to play through another small bet to prevent their flush draw equity from being realized.

Alexey Zavo agrees with hero about fold equity. With this turn card it really becomes less. He thinks it makes sense not to bet with hands that block folds and don't block calls. Of the Broadway hands, Alexey Zavo would choose for bluffing only those that contain a blocker on the flush draw, as in the opponent's defense range.


Ax on the river has significantly reduced the number of hands with an Ace for both players. Now pairs (TT – KK) became value bets, since there is very little Ax hands in the opponent's range. Alexey Zavo would bet all pairs from TT+ for value.

Let's count the combos:

  • TT (6)
  • JJ (6)
  • QQ (6)
  • KK (6)
  • AK (4)
  • AQ (4)
  • Some offsuit and suited Ax with a low kicker, let there be 4-5 combinations

Total: around 35 value combinations

If we bet the pot on the river, we need half the bluff combinations of our value hands, which is about 18 combos.

When the hero shoves on the river, his opponent will have to defend almost half of his range to avoid overfolding. This is a lot of pocket pairs and hands that are hitting the board.

But, that depends on whether there are enough bluffs to the river in hero's range. If there are not enough bluffs, then any such mathematics does not make sense. You can fold everything that does not beat hero's value bets. Considering the texture, the hero can easily have a certain number of flush draws and just random hands of the format J8o, Q7o, etc. in his bluff range.

It follows that you should only choose the best bluffs that will block your opponent's defensive range. Bluffs that will not block his fold on the river. The worst bluffs are missed spade and club draws with a Broadway card. The best bluffs are blockers for top pocket pairs, e.g. 67 and 78, because they block 66, 77 and 88.

Hero's hand does not block folds, but at the same time it does not block calls. Personally, if Alexey Zavo got to the river with a hand like that, he would also be bluffing. But you should understand that if hero saw a call on threes or fives, it would definitely be a bad bluff. And so we can safely say that we hit the upper part of the enemy's range. With such a showdown, it's difficult to call our bluff negative.


On the turn we don't have the best hand for bluffing as it blocks KQ and KJ that would fold. You can choose a slightly smaller sizing on the turn and block bet much more often. Check only the worst hands that block your opponent's folds.

On the river, without knowing how often your opponent goes to showdown and wins at showdown, at this limit it is quite possible to bluff more often. It will be extremely difficult for your opponent to defend against a push with pocket pairs (33 – 88).

At NL50 there won't be many guys who can easily call the river here. So bluffing on the river is okay.