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Live Low-stakes NL Discussion of up to 3/5 live no-limit, pot-limit and spread-limit Texas Hold'em poker games, situations and strategies.

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Old 08-13-2017, 01:53 PM   #1
QuantumSurfer
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Big Blind defense.

So I've read a few articles about defending the BB pretty wide, specifically there's a video on it on the CLP website and I watched a Ryan Fee vid where he suggests the same. One guideline recommends calling with about 150% of the opener's range. I wanted to get your guy's take on it because even if we are getting better odds, we're still forced to play OOP where our equity will often go under-realized. How wide are you defending your BB vs 1 opener?
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Old 08-13-2017, 02:08 PM   #2
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Re: Big Blind defense.

I feel like this is a bit of a trap in LLSNL cashgames, and quickly can turn into quite a big leak.Defending the BB wide is a trend that have arised from tournament play over the last few years- as a an adjustment to extremely wide open raises (steal attempts)from late position openers.

For many quite obvious reasons my opinion is that this trend dont apply very accurately to LLSNL games the same way it does for tournaments.One example is that cashgame raises is usally bigger than the standard 2x or 2,5x wich is standard in tournaments so you get worse direct odds on the preflop call.Another one is that it is harder to play OOP with deeper stacks, compared to the standard 20-30 BB stacks in tournaments. Playing OOP with deeper stacks with a wider weaker range also is vulnerable for expensive follow up mistakes postflop due to those deeper stacks in play.

Another example i want to mention, the opening ranges in a vacuum is alot tighter in cashgames-because the blinds dont go up to increase action and reward stealing blinds. The cashgame developes itself by other factors like the spesific game that night and those spesific 9 players tendencies,actual dynamics,playing styles and so on- not shallower stacks or blind increase forcing more action.

So based on the above how wide i defend is dictated by the frequenzy of opening raises from the particular villain+ the postflop tendencies and aggression level for that exact villain.
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Old 08-13-2017, 02:23 PM   #3
BackDoorFlush
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Re: Big Blind defense.

No.

Not to mention in pot raked games you end up paying a **** ton in rake when you do this.
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Old 08-13-2017, 03:07 PM   #4
venice10
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Any time you are watching a video that isn't specifically about the game you are playing, you need to have a strong understanding of the differences between your game and the game the video is talking about. As mentioned above, LLSNL is the last bastion of high pfr, passive, calling station players and high raising standards. Keep in mind that if the villain is raising QQ+, AK only, a calling range of 150% greater is only calling JJ or TT in addition. In LLSNL, a lot of players only raise those hands or even tighter.

I wouldn't worry about defending your blinds that much in LLSNL.
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Old 08-13-2017, 03:20 PM   #5
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Nice post, Petrucci. Sums it all up, imo.

Remember that Ryan Fee is (was?) a 6-max OL specialist. Pretty surprised by CLP, but maybe they are talking about 5/10+?
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Old 08-13-2017, 03:34 PM   #6
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Garick View Post
Nice post, Petrucci. Sums it all up, imo.

Remember that Ryan Fee is (was?) a 6-max OL specialist. Pretty surprised by CLP, but maybe they are talking about 5/10+?

Thanks!

Yeah, Ryan Fee have played/plays alot online+ he plays bigger stakes live in general. Where you also see (in 6 max online games), that a bigger portion of players winrates comes from stealing blinds and raising wide in late position. So the concept applies alot more presise in online 6 max cashgame environment than for LLSNL.

So the premises either way is totally different for LLSNL games. In live 5/10 and higher the aggression factor is on a whole different level than in smaller games, lot more pros/skilled opponents with more wider balanced ranges than in smaller games and so on.

My conclusion and clear opinion is that players on this forum should be aware of all the different premises/traps regarding this concept, and to be very careful to incorporate this blindly into their game at LLSNL. At least use lot of time to analyze your own game conditions so you dont misapply things.
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Old 08-13-2017, 03:36 PM   #7
QuantumSurfer
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Re: Big Blind defense.

The strat I'm talking about was aimed specifically at LLSNL. I wouldn't have posted here if they weren't talking about these games.
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Old 08-13-2017, 03:47 PM   #8
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by QuantumSurfer View Post
The strat I'm talking about was aimed specifically at LLSNL. I wouldn't have posted here if they weren't talking about these games.

Alright then. That wasnt all that easy to understand from you opening post, as you didnt link to any spesific article/video- and you wasnt clear about what type of games the strat was aimed at.
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Old 08-13-2017, 05:10 PM   #9
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Re: Big Blind defense.

There are 2 reasons to call a preflop raise. You think your hand is strong enough that it out values opponent now or you think you can flop well enough to out value opponent post flop.

In the first case you are playing straight hand strength and need a stronger hand then villains range, adjusted for direct odds you are getting. In the second you can be wider then villain if you think the implied odds are good enough. Adjusted a bit for direct and implied odds that you didn't consider the first time. Minus some range for being OOP and plus/minus some adjustment for how often you can bluff and otherwise out play opponent. And remembering that implied odds are capped by effective stacks.

Against some villains I am defending much wider then 150% of their <10% range. I often have a range with gaps against these guys. I will fold AQ because I don't want to flop one pair against their tight range, but I will call with 97s because when I do connect I can make a lot.

On the other hand, against a LAG opening a 30% range in LP, I'm not defending my blind with a 45% range. That's a huge leak even if villain is bad. You will miss too many flops and flop too many weak 1 pair hands that leave you guessing if you are ahead or not.
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Old 08-13-2017, 05:19 PM   #10
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Re: Big Blind defense.

In a vacuum the theory behind defending your bb wide really stems from the fact that you already have 1 bb in the pot. If you fold you lose 1 bb; that's a big deal. Especially vs a small raise size.

However, in LLSNL and live FR play in general, there are so many other factors to consider when choosing to defend your big blind. How big is the raise size? Is the pot multiway? Is the pot multiway with multiple weak players? Is there a high rake? (this actually has a really large impact)

Some hands realize their equity better (despite hot and cold equities vs the field) than others; K2o is a much worse defend in a lot of situations than 93s.

There's really no definitive answer other than it depends on the situation. That being said, I will say that if there's a 3-4bb open, and it goes more than heads up with players I'm very confident I have a general edge on, I'm not folding a suited combo or a connected combo. Although, I play with time rake.
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Old 08-13-2017, 07:05 PM   #11
mark "twang"
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petrucci View Post
I feel like this is a bit of a trap in LLSNL cashgames, and quickly can turn into quite a big leak.Defending the BB wide is a trend that have arised from tournament play over the last few years- as a an adjustment to extremely wide open raises (steal attempts)from late position openers.

For many quite obvious reasons my opinion is that this trend dont apply very accurately to LLSNL games the same way it does for tournaments.One example is that cashgame raises is usally bigger than the standard 2x or 2,5x wich is standard in tournaments so you get worse direct odds on the preflop call.Another one is that it is harder to play OOP with deeper stacks, compared to the standard 20-30 BB stacks in tournaments. Playing OOP with deeper stacks with a wider weaker range also is vulnerable for expensive follow up mistakes postflop due to those deeper stacks in play.

Another example i want to mention, the opening ranges in a vacuum is alot tighter in cashgames-because the blinds dont go up to increase action and reward stealing blinds. The cashgame developes itself by other factors like the spesific game that night and those spesific 9 players tendencies,actual dynamics,playing styles and so on- not shallower stacks or blind increase forcing more action.

So based on the above how wide i defend is dictated by the frequenzy of opening raises from the particular villain+ the postflop tendencies and aggression level for that exact villain.
+1 to the entire post

Was especially thinking about the bolded part today when contemplating the nuances of cash games.
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Old 08-13-2017, 07:10 PM   #12
Minatorr
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Re: Big Blind defense.

9-max "defending" your BB isnt as important for a lot of reasons than as 6-max, and you definitely dont want to be defending 150% vs say a 60% BTN opening range where you get ****ed by rake. 9-max if people are opening too loose, they get punished by the rest of the table so you're protected by that. Whereas 6-max if you fold your BB too much CO/BTN/SB are going to keep stealing relentlessly. 150% vs tight ranges with speculative hands like all PP/SCs is fine, fold suited gappers or 3b pre

Tip from playing 6-max. Against decently aggro SB openers RFI (40-60%+), 3-bet relentlessly. A2o-A5o, A2s-A6s, 74s+, KQo+, AJo+, most suited K/Q/J. Most people way overfold SB vs BB 3-bet. They open too wide and therefore can't defend profitably enough OOP, also most people dont 4b bluff enough.

Last edited by Minatorr; 08-13-2017 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 08-13-2017, 07:44 PM   #13
Avaritia
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Re: Big Blind defense.

So many words to say "dont defend your blinds in live poker...at all."
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Old 08-13-2017, 08:07 PM   #14
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Re: Big Blind defense.

+1 to everyone above. These guys have you covered.

Theories that hold merit in high stakes tournaments really have no relevance when it comes to low stakes cash games. Your blinds hold much more value in a tournament, and thus you'll often be facing raises from very wide ranges as people look to pick them up. That's just not the case in a cash game, especially a full ring low stakes cash game. Playing OOP with a range disadvantage is mostly just lighting money on fire. The best thing you can do in low stakes cash games is completely disregard your blinds as it pertains to deciding when to enter a pot.
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Old 08-13-2017, 08:40 PM   #15
johnny_on_the_spot
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Re: Big Blind defense.

I'm a CLP sub, what specifically did you watch. I'd like to watch it before I weigh in
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Old 08-13-2017, 08:45 PM   #16
johnny_on_the_spot
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minatorr View Post
Tip from playing 6-max. Against decently aggro SB openers RFI (40-60%+), 3-bet relentlessly. A2o-A5o, A2s-A6s, 74s+, KQo+, AJo+, most suited K/Q/J. Most people way overfold SB vs BB 3-bet. They open too wide and therefore can't defend profitably enough OOP, also most people dont 4b bluff enough.


You can also see the people who will call 3! way too wide, look at their fold to cbet in 3! Pots stat (or call cbet in 3! Pot, they will just be inverse of each other). Many tend to call too wide then have to fold on OTF because their range is super wide. This is actually very analogous to live poker and has helped me greatly wrt live play
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Old 08-13-2017, 10:14 PM   #17
fluxboy
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by QuantumSurfer View Post
One guideline recommends calling with about 150% of the opener's range ... How wide are you defending your BB vs 1 opener?
I ran it past the machine. She, of course, was rather dismissive of the whole matter, but threw me a banana:

~150% of the openers range vs a min raise.
~100% vs a 3x raise.
~50% vs a 4x raise.
~33% vs a 5x raise.

From late position.

This is what she would do vs herself. I don't think she understands rake, risk/reward, or play that didn't originate from an artificial neural net imprisoned deep within a mainframe. Hence, carry over might be optimistic.

Or pessimistic, depending how you swing.

Personally, I find the live environment to emphasize other skill sets. I think the only question I would ask myself if I was ever forced to defend my blind was if the raiser was being a dick.

But that's just me.
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Old 08-13-2017, 11:24 PM   #18
QuantumSurfer
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Re: Big Blind defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnny_on_the_spot View Post
I'm a CLP sub, what specifically did you watch. I'd like to watch it before I weigh in
It's a video on pf ranges, #308. BB discussion starts at about 47:53.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:45 AM   #19
cAmmAndo
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Re: Big Blind defense.

I don't sub to clp any longer but much of their content is geared towards 5/T where rake isn't a concern since it's a time charge and very small % of profits compared to say 1/2 where defending a 5x open and winning with a single bet postflop results in having 18% of profits raked.

Secondly if you calculate a minimum defense frequency you will find you need to defend significantly less vs a 5x open than a 3x open which is common at 5/T.

Lastly "blind defense" implies a situation where it folds to a player in a late "steal position" who opens. This happens much less at 1/2 or 1/3 as there is far more limping.

In the absence of specific exploits, most llsnl players will do better in blind defense by simply 3 betting more of their narrow defending range rather than widening it.


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