Sunday, July 29, 2012

flop donk > CR ? I think it's likely.

I've got 5 reasons why I think a flop donk is better than a CR when OOP in HU LHE. Here they are, in order from my rough estimate of importance, from lesser to greatest: 5) by acting first, you force your opponent to choose the correct response 100% of the time, and since no player is perfect, you force them to make the first mistake. 4) I actually WANT the times that I check/check-call the flop/turn to be exploitable, where I'll often call the flop but then fold the turn. This will encourage my opponent to CBet-bluff the turn, which allows me to then shift otherwise VBet hands into my check-calling range to gain value (while bluffing more in my betting range), and then to shift those hands back if they catch on, allowing my weak hands to get free cards on the turn (and then VBetting more strongly when they're then calling more often vs. my donks). If I CR the flop, I don't have any options to incentivize my opponent to make these mistakes. 3) your opponent never has an option to simply check back the flop or turn to realize more equity with hands you want to VBet/protection bet against (like AH/KH hands, or QH with a GS, etc). (note: even if they raise the flop for a free turn card, then they'll run into my #1 point below). This becomes an even greater issue if they tighten up pre-flop and have a higher % of HC hands on average when there's a lower flop/turn. 2) you're getting 20% price on the flop for pure-bluffs instead of 33%, which I feel is more important than getting extra value from value CR on the flop since in the end, VBets/raises are EV neutral. 1) you force your opponent to put in extra bets for a bluff raise, giving yourself either 2:1 profit on your own Value:Bluffs if they raise the flop, or 2.5:1.5 if they raise the turn. This means you can get paid off on your value hands from their bluffs at a higher price to them, which allows you to bluff twice as often as you VBet (in the 2:1 structure). Ex: if you VBet (donk) 20% of the time on the flop, you can donk-bluff as much as 40% of the time, while if they try to bluff-raise the flop, in small bets your EV = 2(0.2) - 1(0.4) = 0. For a flop CR, you're getting 3:2 on both either the flop or turn, which if you V-CR 20% leaves you with EV = 3(.2) - 2(.3) = 0 for EV neutral, showing you can only bluff max 30% of the time. This feeds back into point #2 above, where not only can you bluff more often, but those bluffs are then more profitable.

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