Call or Fold With Top Pair Versus an All-In and a Call?
DECISION POINT: In a $1/$2 no-limit hold'em cash game, you complete with from the small blind and see the flop with six opponents. You lead out on the flop and get two callers from UTG and the button. On the turn you check, UTG goes all in, and the button calls the shove with chips behind. Action is back on you...
PRO ANSWER: Our decision to complete from the small blind with A-T-suited against so many limpers is a very reasonable one. Our hand plays well multi-way and isn't quite strong enough to get it in happily preflop if UTG were to limp-reraise all in after we raise.
However, with this many opponents on the flop, we should check our top pair and attempt to put in as little money as possible postflop in the hopes of getting to a cheap showdown.
As played after we bet the flop, there are now two preflop limpers going to the turn with us in what was originally a seven-way limped pot. Both opponents have many wheel cards in their limping ranges and this particular board has so many combos of sets, two-pair hands, and straights possible after the hits.
The button has so many 3-x combinations in his range (e.g., A-3, 5-3, 4-3, 3-2) that check-folding the turn should be our default play with top pair. We should be putting UTG on a range of sets, straights, and possibly two pair. The button's range is likely a straight and very occasionally a set. We are drawing essentially dead the vast majority of the time.
It's true that many opponents at low stakes will call with somewhat thin draws, but when nearly three times the pot goes in and gets called, their hands are relatively face-up.
Folding is the best play.
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