JJ in the big blind

Strategy & Advice by Krusherlaw Posted

This hand came up the other night in a $1/3 nlhe game at the horseshoe in Baltimore.

I was in a game that broke and this was literally the first hand ad the new table so no reads on anyone.

I am in the bb with $350. I have JJ. V is UTG. She has about $600.

4 players limp to me and I raise to $20. V calls as does one other.

Flop 953 rainbow.

I bet $50. V raises to $150. If I call I have a little bit less than $200 left to bet. Do I call fold or shove?


  1. Without any reads, Fold.
    Get some reads on other Villains and wait for better spots

  2. Krusherlaw -

    Thanks for the strategy posts; there are not enough of these anymore!

    Absent any reads, I too think a fold is in order here. My guess is that your opponents range here is: (1) a flopped set; (2) a hand like A-9 or any 9-X hand, or: (3) a very strangely played over-pair.

    On this flop, two pair hands make no sense and draw hands of any sort really make no sense. I would put the odds of an over-pair here as also very low, although 10-10 might make a bit more sense. But herein lies the problem for me. Very few hands that are not sets make sense. Some players might feel like A-9 is good here, but most players would not then translate this into a reason to raise (meaning you get a hand like A-K to fold but might get stacked by any overpair).

    I also stereotype women as less likely to be LAG and bluffers, although (if I am even right) I would also adjust this weaker stereotype read for age, race, appearance, whether she was drinking, etc. But you have to put this player as capable of a total bluff (since hardly any semi-bluff hands seems likely. 6-4 suited, with a backdoor flush draw, is about as close to a decent semi-bluff hand as your going to find, but would most players really call $20 with this weak of a hand? I don't think so).

    Only sets seem to make sense. I don't like seeing monsters under the bed, but I am having trouble finding hands we beat. FOLD.

  3. I agree that sometimes you'll run in to a set, but I don't normally find a fold here. If she had a set the better option would be for her to call and not push out the player behind her. Because she raised and isolated us, I'd tend to call and check call off on turn, allowing her range to stay wide and letting her bet better hands (which we would get called by if we shoved anyway), worse hands for value which might fold if we shove flop (like A-9, K-9), and bluffs which would have folded if we shoved on the flop (mostly gutshot draws like 6-7 and 7-8). I think we'll also see TT a lot here which is a great spot for us to be in.
    Cliffs- I call then check call all in on turn. That is a better line than re raising (shoving) flop over her raise because we allow her to continue betting with worse value hands than ours and bluffs that would all fold if we shoved flop. And if she has a set or a better hand than ours we lose the same either way whether we call then check call or shove flop, so calling then check calling turn > re raising all in on flop.

  4. Thanks for the replies. I was really on the fence with this one. Its really hard to put her on hand. AA-QQ would probably have re-raised and a set would have played a little bit slower, especially on such a dry board. I felt like I was ahead but a call on the flop would commit me for the rest of my chips and we were playing pretty deep. After tanking for a while I decided to fold based in part on a look she gave me while I was tanking. I am not a big believer in physical tells, especially because good players will fake them, but this was enough to break the tie.

  5. @Krusherlaw It's ok to fold if you have hat feeling and it's the path of least resistance (variance) in this spot. But keep in mind you really aren't playing deep at all with less than 120 big blinds. I'd consider 200bb where "deep" stack poker begins.