Sometimes it all works out and you have the right hand, in the right spot, at the right time. Be mindful that these situations don’t guarantee that you will win the pot you are playing, but know that as a poker player you did everything in your power to be successful and be a profitable poker player.
I’m holding As-Ks in The Cutoff (TC) with blinds at $500/$1000. I have $50,000 in chips which is a medium stack according to The Poker Model. Less than 20 big blinds would be a short stack and greater than 50 big blinds would be considered large. My stack being on the border is not terribly significant. As-Ks is a premium hand, one in which I’ll want to get all of my chips in in the pre-flop phase. Not only will I usually have good odds to win, but I won’t have to deal with a flop where my hand may get worse. Other premium hands are A-A and K-K. The action folds to me and I raise to $2,000.
The player from the button 3-bets (reraises) to $6,000 and the other two players to his left fold. The action is back on me. This is a great spot for me because my initial raise may have looked like I was trying to steal the blinds with a weak hand. It looks this way because I’m seated in The CutOff (TC) with no previous action. My opponent may have sensed weakness and made this 3-bet with a weak hand as well, trying to steal the blinds and my raise.
I make a 4-bet to $15,000 and my opponent instantly moves all-in. I raised to $15,000 to get an all-in from my opponent. My bet was sized so that I’d have enough chips left to induce this action. If I had just gone all-in instead of raising to $15,000, then I may have forced him to fold.
I call the all-in and my opponent flips over A-Q. I’m in a dominant position as the cards run out and I end up winning the hand. This hand was unlucky for my opponent because A-Q is a strong hand from his position and my A-K was slightly better. He didn’t make a bad play, but The Poker Model would have played more conservatively, only calling behind the orginal raise and folding to a flop bet. The lesson here is that when you play your hands the way you’re supposed to, you will find yourself in better spots in the long run. Your opponents will have nothing to say except, “Nice Hand.”