Texas Hold'em No Limit Intermediate

Exploiting Poker Opponents Preflop Using Stats - Part 2

3,801 Views 0 Comments on 16/7/15

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Thispoker plan article will add a lot to the knowledge-base of the first article, because we only touched on a few stats and I think it’s time for a lot more. Let’s get to it!

Total 3-bet Thinking about this stat is crucial and you have to address the certain player that you’re looking at. If you’re looking at a recreational player, they  usually do a lot of wrong things like not considering position and 3-bet the same ranges from all positions vs any position, and reraise their perceived ‘value range’ as we poker players call it. 

Only what you have to understand about this is how they perceive it. We sometimes fold AQs after we 3-bet it from the blinds against a CO raiser and they 4-bet to about 3 times our raise and are the type of player to rarely do that. They don’t. The biggest mistake the recreational player makes is not folding ever when he 3-bets preflop, because he doesn’t understand that mostly he’ll get 4-bet by JJ+/AK and ends up 3-bet/stacking off with 88+/AJ+ because he saw that at the WSOP and thinks it’s okay. 

He 3-bets a wide value range, not a polarized one, and after he put in those 10 blinds (sometimes more or less), he never folds. This means that the 7% 3-bet of a recreational player is WAY different from the 3-bet of a reg. 

If a weak player has a 3-bet of 6% that means that he’s stacking off Ajo+/88+ from any position. If a reg’s 3-bet is 7% it means that if you’re a weak player he’s going to stack off against you with JJ+/AQ and if you’re a reg he’s going to polarize his range and 3-bet you with QQ+/AK and some suited aces and kings, maybe suited connectors in position and squeeze often enough to make a difference in the BB/100 profit rate.
The biggest mistake the recreational player makes is not folding ever when he 3-bets preflop, because he doesn’t understand that mostly he’ll get 4-bet by JJ+/AK and ends up 3-bet/stacking off with 88+/AJ+ because he saw that at the WSOP and thinks it’s okay.
You need at least 30-40 orbits on a player to have ACCURATE, REAL knowledge of what his real 3-bet is, so number of hands depends on the number of people on the table.

Total fold to 3-bet
This is a really important stat in a sense that if a guy is folding more than a certain amount, as he should usually, you’re going to gain profit in the long run even if you decide to play ABC poker postflop. Let’s see what the math adds up to in a few situations:

You’re 3-betting against an UTG raiser, he opens for 3x and you 3-bet to 3x so 9 blinds. You’re putting down 9 blinds to win 13.5(added BB and SB), and the blinds will rarely play back as they know that you’re re-raising against an early position raiser so you have a tight range. 

Your BE frequency (get reference from first article) is 9/13.5*100=67% roughly. This means that if EP folds two thirds of his opening range, you’re going to profit from it even iff you fold 100% of the time postflop when you’re bluffing. But you won’t be bluffing EVERY TIME, so it’s a +EV move.

Let’s see what an EP raiser’s opening range looks like in 6-max: 77+, Aqo+, Ajs+, QJs, JTs, KQs. That’s 7.2%. Or at least it should be because most regs I’ve seen at 6-max open 10%+ from EP. 

The issue here is, when you’re opening this range from EP, and get 3-bet, can you really continue with QQ against a player that 3-bets you from the button ? It’s kind of hard and usually when you 4-bet/call you get shown AA/KK and rarely AK. It’s because players are a lot tighter 3-betting against EP opens and they adjust. 

That’s where you come in. You know the EP’s raising 7.2 and if you 3-bet him he will continue with KK+/AK and in some cases only KK+, you know you’re going to bluff A LOT until he adjusts and starts stacking off lighter, and then you polarize your range. 

But KK+/AK is 2.1% so he’s folding 100*(7.2-2.1)/7.2 of his range which is 70%, so in comes the profit. I don’t expect villains at small stakes under NL200 to 4-bet bluff against a player who 3-bets their EP raise.

Also, be careful because players, lately, have gone crazy with BvB game and if their fold to 3-bet is generally 70%, you might believe that’s their fold when you 3-bet them BB vs Button open, which couldn’t be farther from the truth. Remember, their EP fold to 3-bet is rather huge, so the later positions compensate for this. I’ve seen players calling 3-bets from the button with KTo and all sorts of crap, so try to take a more wide-oriented range approach versus those guys.

4-bet Not poker planmuch to talk about this one, but basically you can find out if you have a great sample size against a player what range he 4-bets with from dividing his opening range to that percentage and you can get what hands he reacts to.

The sample size has to be of at least 80-100 orbits. Also take into consideration, if you have notes on him, what hands he likes to flat a 3-bet with, because those you should take out of his 4-bet bluff/value range.
Usually players at the smaller stakes will over-adjust, so after you 3-bet them for a little while, they will start 4-bet bluffing you like there’s no tomorrow and that’s when you have to capitalize by either shoving a wider range.
Watch out for those who 4-bet a lot, because sometimes it becomes very profitable to shove BvB or BB vs Button hands like 99+/AQ, if their 4b bluff range is out of order. 

Usually players at the smaller stakes will over-adjust, so after you 3-bet them for a little while, they will start 4-bet bluffing you like there’s no tomorrow and that’s when you have to capitalize by either shoving a wider range, which is optimal, or for those who don’t like Lady Variance that much, tightening up your 3-bet range. It’s just like a game of cat and mouse.

I hope you liked reading this article as much as I enjoyed writing it, stay tuned for the next one that will include insights on exploiting opponents in the post-flop game by reading their stats really well. I leave you with the words of wisdom from a great master:

Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves. Bruce Lee
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