These two hands occurred in Las Vegas and Seattle and are effectively mirror images of each other. The results do not really matter as I'm seeking feedback on the right play on the flop.
Hand #1: 1/2 Golden Nugget. We are six handed. I am under the gun with an effective stack of $450. The villain is in the small blind and he covers us. The villain was a really young Indian kid who could not have been over thirty but he did not strike as a particularly strong or tough player.
I have king
: queen ♣
I raise to $12. Folded to the villain in the small blind and the villain calls. The big blind folds.
The flop is queen♥
The villain checks, I bet $15, the villain then check-raises to $35. I tank call the checkraise.
The turn is the six ♣
The villain bets $70. I tank call.
The river is the queen
: The villain checks, I bet $100 and the villain folds. The villain claimed that he had a deuce but doesn't show it.
Hand #2: 1/3 Seattle. It's a full table. I am in the lojack with $530. The villain is under the gun with $350. The villain was a younger Asian guy in his thirties and he was waiting for the 3/5 table.
The villain has put out a $13 straddle. I have king♥
The UTG plus 2 player calls the $13 straddle. I raise to $51. Folded to the villain who calls on the straddle. The UTG plus 2 player calls as well.
The flop is king
: two ♥
The villain donk leads the flop for $150. The UTG plus 2 player folds. I tank call.
The turn is the ace ♦
The villain shoves his final $150, I tank call. The river is another ace.
The villain scoops the pot with 5 ♣
What was the optimal play on both flops? The villain in hand one went for the checkraise while the villain in hand two went with the pot-sized donk lead. In hand one, I did not have any backdoor flush possibilities while I did have such a possibility in hand two.
My sense is that the right play on both flops would have been to fold to the check-raise in hand #1 while calling the flop in hand #2 with the intention of folding to an all-in from the villain on the turn if a king, queen, or heart did not come on the turn.
On both flops, I am either way ahead or way behind as there really aren't any draws available to either villain on both flops.
The villain from hand #2 confused the heck out of me with his pot sized donk lead. It was tough for me to give him credit for a deuce because his play seemed like such a game theory disaster if he had a deuce as I could comfortably ditch hands like queens, jacks, tens.
What also played a role in me calling both flops was that neither player should be calling out of position with a deuce facing a raise from early position, especially the villain on the straddle in hand #2. The villain later explained to me that he called with 5/2 offsuit because he was in the straddle, that it was "only" $38 to call the raise, and that he was going to try to gamble and hit something on me given my stack. Is the villain's reasoning sound or should I be trying to get on this guy's 3/5 table?
Looking at the numbers from a results-oriented perspective, you can see that I would have much rather won hand #2 as opposed to hand #1.