Attacking your opponents range

Most recreational players don't bet trips strongly on a non-draw heavy paired board. 

If you are looking to pick up som...

Posted Jun 01, 2015


Bart Hanson

Bart Hanson

Owner and Lead Pro

Most recreational players don't bet trips strongly on a non-draw heavy paired board. 

If you are looking to pick up some extra money at the poker table pay attention to non-draw heavy, paired boards—especially in limped pots. The simple fact of the matter is that most recreational players will not bet their trips hard when they feel like they have nothing to protect against. This creates a very profitable situation if you notice when someone bets trips on a paired board that does not contain draws. In this case there is a high probability that they do not have a strong hand and you can easily take the pot away from them on a later street.

Let us take a look at a hand that I observed one of my students play in a $5-$5 $500 capped game at the Commerce Casino. Two people, including the under the gun player limped in, and my student over limped with J T on the button. Both blinds checked their option and they saw a flop of 7 7 2. The blinds checked again, the under the gun checked and the mid position over limper bet out $20 into the $25 pot. My student called and everyone behind him folded. The turn brought the Q and the upfront villain checked. My student bet $45 and quickly got a fold. 

This may seem like a trivial hand but my student was doing exactly what it takes to be a very good player in no limit--he was playing off the range of his opponent, not his own cards. He knew that most villains in this spot would check a seven on a disconnected board like this in order to "trap". He told me afterwards that he considered raising the flop but felt that because the trips were the top cards that he did not need to worry about someone over calling with a deuce. This was pretty sound thinking on his part. 

You see, if the board was something like 229r we could sometimes be concerned with a player over calling with a nine to a single bet or the betting villain not check folding top pair on the turn. In that case you could make the case for raising because it makes it very difficult for top pair in the blinds to call two cold or for the bettor to continue to a lot of heat. But on this type of board we can risk the same on our bluff through floating as opposed to bluff raising. 

Be hyperaware however, of players leading out for large amounts on these types of boards from UTG or UTG +1. A lot of times that indicates a big pocket pair that was trying to go for a limp reraise preflop like aces or kings---and good like trying to bluff them off of those hands even on a paired board.

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