Hello, Kruzer20 here, and this is the first episode of the Regwars series I'll be recording for Carrot Corner. All hands in the selection are 3-bet pots played at NL200 against other regulars.

1. KK Out of Position – and an Unpleasant Turn

The first hand we have here are pocket Kings. Button opens, we 3-bet, he calls.

We get this board, pretty low and dry board. My strategy here would be a polarized approach. I'm going to be using a big bet or check.

My hand will probably bet most of the time. How I would choose what overpair to bet and what to mix check with would probably depend on my suits. When I have a spade, I'm more likely to bet because I unblock some of his King X of clubs and hearts. If I had a heart and diamond, I would be willing to check more. Anyways, I went for a bet and villain calls.

We get an Ace on the turn.

Usually when you get an Ace after you continuation bet the flop, you want to do a lot of small betting, because on most of the boards, the Ace will hit you most of the time because of your Ace-Queens, Ace-Kings, Ace-Jacks, whatever.

Our range in this spot is all the overpairs, 9x, and a lot of our Ax that we see bet the flop with.

So against the stab, I think we need to call once with our overpairs. Some of them are better than others – let's say if I had Queens here, that would be a better call, even though Kings is a better hand in showdown strength, right?

We go with a call and we get a pretty brick on the river.

Villain is not really going to be having a 10 in this line because a 10 is too strong in this configuration to start bluffing the turn already. He might have some Ace-10, but that's like one combo of Ace-10 of diamonds.

Now his range is going to be Ace Queen, Ace Jack suited, pocket Aces... good candidates. And then we have a lot of those Ace highs – Ace King, Ace Queen – that we need to defend in order to not overfold, because as I said, we still have a lot of showdown value. We beat so many of his backdoors from the flop and worse Ax.

On this river, as I said, most of my range will be those Ace Kings and Ace Queens, while most of his range will be low pocket pairs that are trying to deny equity on the turn, that they're pushing equity against my overcards and then 10x and stuff. This river improves me more and I have to develop a donking range for my Ace King, specifically Ace Queen as well.

And also one of the reasons I called is because of my King of spades. If he is going to bluff those backdoor stuff, it's way better to have King of spades, because I unblock the bluffs like hearts and clubs. So I go for a call. It is an overall from my perspective, but I thought he would also overbluff. So that's why I did it in the end, and he made a pretty good play with pocket 6s, which is a standard bluff, I believe, in these spots.

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2. Squeezeing with KTs

Next hand, I have King-10 of spades in the small blind. We decided to squeeze. Both regs called.

This is one of the best boards for us in this spot. So I go for a range continuation bet, small. Reg 1 calls and Reg 2 calls.

I don't expect them to have any raises. They have to have, again, it depends how wide they go. It all comes down to every decision postflop on the flop, turn, or river. It all comes down to how tight the guy is preflop, like how many of the combos he's going to have in his range.

So I expect them here to have a decent bunch of King Jack, Ace-10, Queen Jack. Not so many low pocket pairs, because after all, this is not a normal 3-bet pot, it's a squeeze spot.

We get this turn, which is a pretty equity-shifting card, I believe.

Because like if we had Aces here, Ace King, our hand becomes pretty bad at this point, because we lose to a lot of straights and two pair. So in game, I simplified to a range check, because of that region that we're going to have a lot of one pair hands here. Even though it's probably solver, probably has a betting range here, I simplify these three straight turns into a range check in a 3-bet pot once I continuation bet the flop.
So I go for a range check and he decides to stab half pot.

Our hand is an easy continue here, because we have a redraw. We have a backdoor flush draw. We have some equity against his range.

At this point, he's repping those straights, two pair, and some of the sets that he didn't 4-bet preflop. Maybe Queens, Queens is a high frequency call from these positions. Maybe against the squeeze it will be more of a 4-bet, but still, I expect him to have it some of the time. Ace-Ten as well, Ten-Nine as well some of the time.

We get four-to-a-straight on the river, so again, an equity shifting card.

We're going to have a bunch of Ten-X in this line – all our Jack-Ten, Queen-Ten, King-Ten are going to arrive on the river here. So we have to have a donk in range, in my eyes, and that's what I go for with my hand. I go for a donk.

I see something really unexpected – he decides to jam versus my donk. I just call, easy call for me, and I see a really aggressively played Seven-Six of clubs.

The idea for his river shove, it's a really, really, really advanced play. It requires both regs to know the spot pretty well. So I think his play is a punt in practice, but let's find the reasons why it would be a good play against a good player.

You need to be focused to be playing like a game theory optimal tier game for this spot. It's really, really deep in the game tree and it requires both regs to be on the same level, you know. So that's why I think his raise is a punt in this spot, but yeah, it's interesting.

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3. Calldown with AK

Next hand, Ace-King in the big blind. We 3-bet the cutoff open, we get a nice board, go for a continuation bet.

We're going to have a decent continuation betting frequency on this Ten-high low board, even from the big blind, and it's going to be like around 50-70%, somewhere around that.

My heuristic for this spot is I always go for 50/50 on pair boards, because it's harder to defend against, and our hand can check and bet.

The opponent paid and came out on the turn .

We get a call, and a Nine on the turn, and again with a heart, maybe we could develop some betting frequency, but our hand will mostly be a check, because we dominate a lot of worse Ace-Six and a lot of backdoor stuff that calls us on the flop.

So it's mostly going to be a check for me, and we face a small stab on the turn.

So what's our range at this spot? All the overpairs and strong Ten-X will go into a shove most of the time, if not always. So we need to develop some weaker hands to defend.

So we go for a call, and we get that interesting river.

On this river, as I said, most of my range will be those Ace-Kings, Ace-Queens, while most of his range will be low pocket pairs that are trying to deny equity on the turn, that they're pushing equity against my overcards, and then Ten-X and stuff. So this river improves me more.

So in game, I thought this combo will be pretty decent as a bluff catcher, because I also block some of the flushes he might have. So I didn't want to donk this hand specifically, but if I had other Ace-X, I would probably donk them high frequency, if not pure.

This hand is this spot will be so, so, so, underbluffed for the in-position player to call versus our river donk.

People would mostly fold all of their bluff catchers when the Ace comes, as I said, if they're not playing a GTO game, if they're not really dialed in, if they're not thinking about my range.

But anyway, with my specific hand, I went for a check and we face a shove.

Let's say someone else is in my shoes, and then most of my range will be Ace-Kings and Ace-Queens, and then he has to bluff into that range that has Ace-King a lot. And then he has to expect me to fold my Ace-Kings for his bluff to be profitable. This is all exploitative talk in practice, which I don't think is logical to be honest, and that's also one of the reasons why donking is also better.

It's really easy for villain to see an Ace and think, "Oh, he has Ace-King, he has Ace-Queen, he will have a hard time folding versus my bluffs." And then he checks back, even as the most aggressive guy. That's from my experience. So I would think this spot is really, really, really underbluffed.

But as I said, I had a plan in-game with my specific hand. If I had suited combos, I would probably have other combos as skins, because I would be donking them. But with my specific hand, against this specific guy, I was hoping he might find some bluffs.
If I had, as I said, suited combos of weak Kings, I would be folding exploitatively, because it's a really underbluffed spot in my eyes. But yeah, I go for a call, and you see he has a strong range.

4. A5s vs Old School Reg

So this is one of the cool hands against a really old school regular, I'd say. It's really, really tough to play against these players.

So we have Ace-Five, he flatted preflop, and we went for a squeeze, and he called the squeeze.

We get an Ace-Deuce-Three, which is going to be better for us, because we're going to have Aces, Ace-King, Ace-Queen, all the high Aces, while he will 3-bet those hands most of the time preflop. So we go for a high-frequency continuation bet, and he raises us already on the flop.

So what's his range at this point?

Again, against someone that's not playing proper preflop ranges, it's really hard to range them, as I already said. But it's probably something like good Aces, Ace-Queen plus, and then a really, really small portion of his range – low pocket pairs, right?

So he isn't really representing much on this board. He needs to be flatting those Deuces and Threes preflop versus a 2.5x open, which is really, really unlikely, even against an old-school guy. I wouldn't expect him to have those hands in his range, maybe at super low frequency. But anyway, our hand is a pure call, we have a redraw, nothing to talk about here.

Diamond completes on the turn, so he does improve to flushes, but most of the flushes will also 3-bet preflop. So he's representing a really, really, really narrow range.

He needs to have like King-Jack here, King-Queen, that flat preflop and then see my squeeze, which doesn't really happen often in practice.

So we get a brick on the river, and he decides to follow through, he decides to jam.

At this point, he's representing Deuces, Threes, he's not representing Ace-Queen anymore. So he's representing Deuces, Threes and flushes. And no matter how wide he is preflop, I still think that's such a small portion of his range, that it's really easy to overbluff.

So he does go for the jam, and I have a decision. Now I do have Ace-X of Diamonds, flushes that are way better. I do have sets. It doesn't matter if I have Ace-Ten here or Ace-King, because he's representing either flushes or sets. And with Ace-Five, there's a really small chance that I even block some value. He might have Five-Four as well, that's also a hand that he would always raise on the flop, because it unblocks my calls, it doesn't block the Ace-X calls, right? You want to build a pot with that.

So I go with my gut, I go with my feeling about the spot, and I don't even mix these types of hands against such a small portion of his value range, that it's easy to overbluff, in my eyes. We go for a call, and this time we do beat an occasional bluff, pocket Fours.

Even though this is a really good bluff in theory, if it was played properly, you know, if it was played as a 3-bet pot – as if he 3-bet and I called. But he called preflop, and then he called a squeeze. So I didn't really expect him to have these low pocket pairs. But if he has Fours, he also has Fives, he also has Sixes, he also has Sevens. And all of those hands might raise the flop and follow through once they get the diamond on the turn.

5. Last Hand: Bluff-Catching with 77

Next hand, we have pocket Sevens. We go for a 3-bet, we get called.

Ten-ten board is usually going to be pretty good for the small blind, because we're going to have a Ten-X advantage.

We're going to have Ace-Ten offsuit, King-Ten offsuit at a frequency that the preflop caller will never have. If he has a Ten offsuit, he will 4-bet it or fold most of the time.

So we go for a continuation bet.

Five on the turn, we decide to check. We have to check a lot here, because we're going to be continuation betting a lot as well ourselves.

So naturally, we want to check a lot of turns. And like so, his flushes improve, his pocket Sixes, pocket Sevens, pocket Nines with a heart, you know, they all get equity. So we can't really mindlessly blast our overpairs on this turn. So we go for a check this time with pocket Sevens with a heart.

We face a small stab.

I think the only decision here is just call. If we had an overpair with a heart, if we had Ten-X, those are the hands that want to build a pot and want to play for stacks. But this one is always going to be just a call. And we get a brick on the river.

We check, he jams, and we have a decision here.

Now we have to think, does our hand block the bluffs, or does it block value?

Our hand is pretty neutral at this point. It blocks some of the value, Seven-X of hearts. But the key part is, it doesn't block any single bluff. So all the overcards with a heart, it doesn't block that. It doesn't block Jack-Nine suited, it doesn't block Queen-Jack suited. Based on that, it's going to be a decent bluff catcher in-game. So I decided to call this time.

And he had Ten-X, and we lost a stack.

But let's check this hand in the solver to see what's his river range, what is he supposed to give up, what is he supposed to follow through, to make our Sevens a good call, to make our Sevens a bad call. Let's see what would happen, what I think would happen in practice.

So he's going to have quads, full house, flush, straight, okay, trips. A lot, a lot of his range, you see here, is going to be value.

Ace-Queen, Ace-Jack with a heart, you can see they're giving up most of the time. Our hand is already zero expected value, it's indifferent. Let's say I had pocket Sevens without a heart, that was a fold, right?

Ace-Queen, Ace-Jack with a heart, you can see they're giving up most of the time. Our hand is already zero expected value, it's indifferent. Let's say I had pocket Sevens without a heart, that was a fold, right? So let's imagine I have that hand. And we can see here that Ace-Queen with a heart, Ace-Jack with a heart are mostly giving up. They have to give up. Queen-Queen of Diamonds has to give up. Ace-Seven of Diamonds, Ace-Nine of Diamonds have to give up.

So again, it's not a full optimistic approach. So we don't want to be biased when we're looking at the response. You see all the Queen-Nines that I haven't mentioned preflop, also bluffing, Jack-Nines, I mentioned that, Queen-Jacks, I mentioned that, right? So let's put Queen-Jack as well, pure.

King-Queen, we can see here already some of the King-Queens giving up. So let's see our response versus this. Villain jams, and now even the Sevens, as I said, without a heart, became from zero EV to nine big blinds EV call.

Hope you enjoyed it!