Dominik Nitsche Breaks Down Epic Poker Hand Strategy


– Hey guys, I’m bringing
you this hand here between Alex Foxen and Ike Haxton. They are heads-up in the
Super High Roller Bowl which is the biggest
tournament of the year and there’s this really
exciting hand heads-up, and yep, let’s jump right into the action and see what happens. Action here, pre-flop,
Alex Foxen coming in for a raise with the queen-deuce. He goes to two and a
half times the big blind. It’s already fairly interesting here, especially because they are playing with a big blind ante. You know that dictates that
you’re going to be playing a lot of hands, which
you do heads-up anyway, but you’re going to be
playing even more hands because big blind ante, so you’re more incentivized
to play your hands. They are like sixty big blinds deep. I think that action is
completely reasonable, and yeah, Ike here comes in with a call. King-six of diamonds. Certainly you can three-bet that some percentage, that’s
a good hand to three-bet. It’s an excellent hand to call. Calling’s fine. Re-raising is fine. Yeah, let’s see how the action continues. Okay, the action here
just goes check by Ike, which is very reasonable, you know, you don’t want to be betting into the pre-flop
aggressor heads up. Alex continues with the continuation bet, around half the pot. Probably very likely because
he has the queen of diamonds. Yeah and Ike continues with a call. What you can think about this hand is you don’t always want to
be betting just because you have the queen of diamonds. If you tend to bet all your
queen of diamonds hands, you’re just simply going to
have way too many of those. So you gotta be careful, you know, you can’t simply bet every
single queen of diamonds. For Ike, check-raising is
really not that appealing here. You don’t have an over-card to the board. Calling’s gonna be the winning play, and I would, in Ike’s way,
I’d play it the same way. In Alex’s way, hmm. I mean, I’m not always betting the flop, but I can certainly see betting
the flop sometimes as well. The turn, action card,
completes the flush for Ike. Gives Foxen a flush draw, obviously with his queen of diamonds. Ike, always going to be
checking on the turn, no surprise here. Again, this is another situation
where Alex needs to decide does he want to bet, or does he want to take the
conservative route and check? Again, you don’t want
to be betting always, and neither do you want
to be checking always. So, in order to be a
strong heads-up player, you got to sometimes mix
up your game a lot and take unpredictable actions, so to speak. So you can’t always just, you know, bet the flop because you
have the queen of diamonds. And then always bet the turn, and then always follow through. So you gotta mix it up sometimes. Sometimes you check, sometimes you bet. Here Alex decides to bet. Again, reasonable. Gotta be careful though, to not overdo it. Which is very easy to do if you take too many of those hands. So yeah, Ike has a flush. He basically has no point raising here. His hand is pretty much invulnerable, So Ike just continues with a call. And let’s see what the river brings. Right, exciting stuff here at the end. Ike obviously checks again, no point in ever betting that river. Yeah, and Alex decides to follow through. And the main interesting
takeaway here is that when Alex follows through, there is around 1.8 million,
1.9 million, in the pot, I’m not exactly sure. But with only 3 million in your stack, that’s less than two
times the size of the pot. So the interesting thing here
is what are you representing when you bet the river, right? And the answer to that is, well, pretty much you’re
representing a flush, you know. If you follow through,
it’s a good play by Alex, as I’ve explained. You know, it’s very reasonable
to take that action. But the mistake is, if you do
represent very few holdings, very strong holdings, you’re
supposed to bet as many chips as you can, you know? So typically just looking at this board, if you want to make your
opponent consider folding an ace, hands as strong as an ace, it’s gonna be very hard to do
so with a bet with of around three quarters of the pot. It’s where you want to
choose an over-betting size to go for the maximum fold equity. To apply a lot of pressure. Because if you think about what you have, which is the lone queen of
diamonds, you’re either bluffing, or you have what’s close to the nuts. So, whenever you have a
hand that is, sort of, you know, a card that can
go in both of those hands, what you want to do is bet the maximum, and give your opponent a really bad price. – [Ike] All in. – [Announcer] Alex doesn’t get cute. Just pitches it. – [Announcer #2] No, just insta-mucks. And you’re going to have to bluff, if you want to play heads-up No-Limit. Foxen tried, and not this time. – [Dominik] In the end, about
this hand you can say that, Alex made a slight mistake on the end. And not putting in all his money in there. And for Ike, the hand pretty
much entirely played itself. There’s nothing we can say about him. If I were in Alex’s shoes here, again, all of his actions are
perfectly reasonable. Can’t criticize his continuation bet, certainly can’t criticize
his double-barrel. The only thing I want to
point out here is that you can’t do this all the time. And if you do it, you
gotta follow through. You can’t just make a half
attempt at taking the pot down. It is scary to put all
your money in on a bluff, but if you look at what
you represent here, which is, you’re representing
the flush, let’s face it. Yeah, you gotta put all your money in. Otherwise, it’s just not credible.

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

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