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Old 09-10-2013, 09:49 AM   #1
pitapita
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Heart COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Hello 2+2. I'm Peter, and I'm a 20 year old student who has been playing online poker for about 2 years. You can read more about me and follow my progress in my PG&C thread.

This Concept of the Week article is about adjusting to stack sizes, particularly the 40bb shortstackers who infest the games on almost every site. It is focused on helping 100bb players play against these players. The main concepts are in 2 short videos, one covering preflop play and the other postflop play. In this post I have included additional calculations, comments, and exercises/examples.

Table of Contents (Click on the time to start the video at that section)
1. Preflop
1.1. Bet Sizing 1:04
1.2. Shoving 3:37
1.3. Multiple 4Bet Sizings 9:12

2. Postflop
2.1. Frequencies 0:22
2.2. How Many Streets 1:45
2.3. Planning On The Flop 4:53





1. Preflop
1.1. Bet Sizing
1.1.1. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the CO. BTN (100bb) calls. SB (40bb) 3bets to 10bb. If we were to 4bet, what size do we make it?
Spoiler:


There are exceptions to the general rule of not putting in more than a third of effective stacks preflop. Two examples of that are when we want to give the opponent a chance to call with a weak hand or spew, or when the opponent folds too much to small reraises and a small reraise is immediately profitable.

1.1.2. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the BTN with AA. SB (40bb) 3bets to 9bb. What size does hero 4bet to?
Spoiler:


1.1.3. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the BTN with 76o. SB (40bb) 3bets to 9bb. We look at the HUD and see that SB 3bets 20% and folds to 4bets 80% over a large sample. What do we do?
Spoiler:


1.2. Shoving
1.2.1. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO and a 40bb shortstacker 3bets to 8bb in the BTN. We have a hand with 35% equity against the opponent's calling range and we shove. How often do we need the opponent to fold for our shove to be profitable?
Spoiler:


1.2.2. Shortstacker (40bb) opens to 2bb in the CO. Hero (100bb) 3bets to 6bb in the BTN. Shortstacker 4bets to 13bb. How often does shortstacker need to fold for us to shove a hand with 30% equity?
Spoiler:

From this example you can see how shortstackers must call a shove very often after putting in a large percentage of their stack.

1.2.3. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO. Shortstacker (50bb) 3bets to 8bb. How often does shortstacker need to fold for us to shove a hand with 30% equity?
Spoiler:


1.2.4. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO. Shortstacker (60bb) 3bets to 8bb. How often does shortstacker need to fold for us to shove a hand with 30% equity?
Spoiler:


From examples 1.2.3 and 1.2.4 notice how a small difference in stack size results in a significant increase in the amount of folds we need to be able to shove. Also notice that it is still reasonable to 4bet shove even as we get over 60bb deep.

1.3. Multiple 4Bet Sizings
1.3.1. Hero opens to 3bb in EP. Shortstacker (40bb) 3bets to 8bb in the BTN. What should hero do with QJs? 66? AKo? KQo?
Spoiler:


1.3.2. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO. Shortstacker (40bb) 3bets to 8bb in the BTN. What should hero do with QJs? 66? AKo? KQo?
Spoiler:



2. Postflop
2.1. Frequencies
2.1.1. 100bb deep. We open to 3bb. We bet 6bb into 7.5bb on the flop. We bet 16bb into 19.5bb on the turn. We shove 75bb into 51.5bb on the river with a polarized range. What percentage of the time does villain call? What percentage of villains range do we need to beat to be able to value bet? What percentage of the time do we bluff?
Spoiler:


2.1.2. 40bb deep. We open to 3bb. We bet 4.5bb into 7.5bb on the flop. We bet 10bb into 16.5bb on the turn. We shove 22.5bb into 36.5bb on the river with a polarized range. What percentage of the time does villain call? What percentage of villains range do we need to beat to be able to value bet? What percentage of the time do we bluff?
Spoiler:


As you can see from these two examples, when stacks are shallower, in general we will be betting smaller which means we will be value betting more hands and bluffing at a lower frequency.

2.2. How Many Streets
2.2.1. Assume in a heads up pot that the current pot size is P, and there are N streets of betting remaining and we want to bet an equal percentage of the pot on each street and get all in on the last street with final pot size S. What percentage of the pot do we bet?
Spoiler:


2.2.2. Hero (100bb) opens to 2bb in the BTN with 77. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is K74r. How many streets do we want to bet to get stacks in?
Spoiler:


2.2.3. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the CO with T9s. SB (40bb) 3bets to 8.5bb. Hero calls. Flop is T97 two-tone and we do not have a flush draw. How many streets do we want to bet to get stacks in?
Spoiler:


When we have a hand that is not strong enough to put all the money in with, we will usually want to bet the same size as the hands that do.
2.2.4. Hero (100bb) opens to 2bb in the BTN with TT. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is K74r. If we wish to bet for 1 street of value, what size do we bet?
Spoiler:


2.2.5. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the CO with JT. SB (40bb) 3bets to 8.5bb. Hero calls. Flop is T97. If we wish to bet for 1 street of value, what size do we bet?
Spoiler:


2.3. Planning On The Flop
When we are in position, most of the time the opponent will check to us, and if we want to go for 3 streets of value, the easiest way to do this is by betting all 3 streets.

2.3.1. Hero (100bb) opens to 3bb in the CO with JTs. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is AKQr and SB checks. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


When we have a hand which we want to bet for 2 streets of value, we need to decide which street to check. When the board is dry or our hand is not vulnerable, we should consider checking the flop to allow the opponent a chance to lead out with a bluff on the turn. When the board is wet or our hand is vulnerable to the hands that will fold to a flop bet, we should consider checking the river. There are few cases where we will plan to bet the flop, check the turn, and bet the river, but the most common situation is on a wet board against an opponent who bluffs too much. There are fewer situations where we will plan to bet the flop, check the turn, and bet the river, but the most common situation is on a wet board against an opponent who bluffs too much.

2.3.2. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO with KQo. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is Q84r. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


2.3.3. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO with KQo. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is QT7 two-tone. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


2.3.4. Hero opens to 3bb in the CO with T9s. SB (40bb) calls. Flop is 987 two-tone. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


When we are out of position, we will usually not want to bet the flop for value unless we can bet all 3 streets. This is because once we check a hand that isn't strong enough to bet 3 streets, the opponent will be able to bet into us and we will have trouble calling with our medium-strength hand. Often when we are 100bb deep, we will choose to check the flop with our very strong hands with the intention of check/raising a street because it is difficult to bet 3 streets and get stacks in. However, when we are 40bb deep, we will usually not have this problem, so we should consider donk betting since it will keep the opponent's range wider than if we check/raised.
However, before donk betting we must consider if the line makes sense. We want to donk bet on boards where we hit very hard with a considerable number of hands and can create a polarized range. Usually when we open raise, we will have most sets and overpairs in our range, but when we are the cold caller, we will often not have some of those hands in our range. This makes it difficult to create a donk betting range on some boards, and it may be better to check/call our strong hands on those boards.

2.3.5. CO (100bb) opens to 3bb. Hero (100bb) calls in SB with QJo. Flop is T98r. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


2.3.6. CO (40bb) opens to 3bb. Hero (100bb) calls in SB with QJo. Flop is T98r. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


2.3.7. CO (40bb) opens to 3bb. Hero (100bb) calls in SB with JTs. Flop is AKQr. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


When we want to go for 1 or 2 streets of value, it is very similar to being in position and we want to check the earlier streets unless the board is wet or our hand is vulnerable to the hands that fold to a bet.

2.3.8. CO (40bb) opens to 3bb. Hero (100bb) calls in SB with KQo. Flop is Q84r. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


However, if we want to bet 2 streets to go all in, we can consider betting flop and turn since we do not worry about being bluffed off our hand. This will occur most often on wet boards or with vulnerable hands since otherwise we will often still want to check to let the opponent bluff.

2.3.9. CO (40bb) opens to 2.5bb. Hero (100bb) 3bets to 7bb in SB with KQo. Flop is QT9 two-tone. What does hero do?
Spoiler:


Deep stacked play left as an exercise for the reader. I'm exhausted fromwriting so much about playing against shortstackers. Who knew short stacking could be so difficult.

Thanks for reading


Spoiler:

Last edited by mpethybridge; 09-10-2013 at 03:47 PM. Reason: 2.3.7 CO stack changed to 40 as per OP
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:54 AM   #2
MrSawyer
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

First!
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:55 AM   #3
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

When I first heard they were updating the COTW's for todays poker climate I was really excited.

Seeing this topic AND seeing your involvement, that has not changed.

Anxious to read this but just wanted to say Thank You for taking the time to do this for all of us at 2p2.
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Old 09-10-2013, 10:15 AM   #4
Dovidiu
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Well written and helpful.

Lots of thanks Mr. Pita.
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Old 09-10-2013, 10:15 AM   #5
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Thanks. The work you and the others have put in to these COTW's is appreciated
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:03 AM   #6
Mzbourg
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Maybe better to edit this part, cba getting banned for a joke.

Nice work Pete.

Last edited by Mzbourg; 09-10-2013 at 11:23 AM.
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:12 AM   #7
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

ban^

nice post, gnna take some time to get through this
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:15 AM   #8
pitapita
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Thanks everyone, and please don't get banned Mzbourg.
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:36 PM   #9
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Hey Pita, love the format for your COTW, well done. Really looking forward to going through in detail these next couple of days.
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:49 PM   #10
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

I also forgot to mention how much I liked that you included some videos to go along with the COTW.

This is a trend I would like to see repeated from others with their presentation of the topics at hand.

Of course, each person who submits their analysis still gets two thumbs up, video or no video :P
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Old 09-10-2013, 01:47 PM   #11
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Nice work Peter! that's awesome that you would take the time to put all this together.

.. obv this will catch the eye of the ev gods and they will bless you with some run hotter than the sun imo

C.
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Old 09-10-2013, 03:14 PM   #12
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Good work Pita Bread
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:14 PM   #13
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Beauty Pita!!! perfect timing for myself. Thanks a lot for this!
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Old 09-10-2013, 08:36 PM   #14
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

nice post,lets kill shorts...
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Old 09-11-2013, 07:28 AM   #15
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Nice work Peter, appreciate the effort. I like the video format.
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Old 09-12-2013, 01:59 PM   #16
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

If I may ask a question. You said about calling 3bet with suited connectors. Should we be doing with short stackers, we have very little odds when we hit or hit a draw. Or is it about looking for villain's who will fold when we reriase his cbet.

Thanks
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Old 09-14-2013, 06:13 AM   #17
pitapita
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaypatel33 View Post
If I may ask a question. You said about calling 3bet with suited connectors. Should we be doing with short stackers, we have very little odds when we hit or hit a draw. Or is it about looking for villain's who will fold when we reriase his cbet.

Thanks
When you open BTN and get 3bet you probably need to something other than fold with your bigger suited connectors or you'll be folding too much. You're probably going to be profitable calling 3 or 4bb more in position closing the action with a lot of hands.

In other positions you should probably be folding suited connectors to a 3bet most of the time.
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Old 09-16-2013, 08:44 AM   #18
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

ty awesome thread
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:56 AM   #19
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Great work! Thanks a lot!
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:59 PM   #20
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Great post!
Thanks
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Old 09-25-2013, 05:37 PM   #21
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

when i play against short stack i always want to get in knowing that they want to push so i only play good hands where i know i can call
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Old 10-02-2013, 09:25 PM   #22
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Thank you for your work with this, looking forward to going through it in a little more depth in the coming days.
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:53 AM   #23
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mzbourg View Post
Maybe better to edit this part, cba getting banned for a joke.

Nice work Pete.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pitapita View Post
Thanks everyone, and please don't get banned Mzbourg.

File that under 'That went well'.
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Old 10-19-2013, 03:54 PM   #24
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

Hey Pita, how do you play QQ agianst short stackers, not sure if we should put in under premiums (KK/AA) and minbet it, or is it a bit more vunerable and should be 4bet jammed.
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Old 10-20-2013, 02:33 AM   #25
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Re: COTW - Playing Against Shortstackers

If it's close think about stack sizes, opponent tendencies (will he flat, does he bluff too much)
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