Call or Shove? Playing a Big Draw Versus a Bet and a Raise
DECISION POINT: In a $2/$5 no-limit hold'em cash game, UTG+2 raises and it folds to the hijack who calls. The button and small blind both fold. You call from the big blind with , and the flop comes . You check, UTG+2 bets, then the cutoff raises. Action is on you...
PRO ANSWER: In this hand after checking the flop there is a bet and a raise to us. We are holding the nut flush draw with a gutshot straight draw and an overcard to the board. We have 9 outs to a flush, 3 additional outs to a straight, and sometimes any ace will be an out as well. Overall, this gives us 12+ outs on the flop.
We are not getting the correct pot odds to call, since there is approximately $220 in the pot and it costs us $120 to call. In addition, we are not closing the action if we call $120. The initial bettor may reraise us. Our draw is not very disguised if we call, so we shouldn't assume we have implied odds to win additional chips on future streets. Calling is not the best play.
However, one of the benefits of having big draws is that they have decent equity against most opponent hand ranges. Additionally, if you combine this with fold equity, you often have a profitable situation.
In this case, we can reraise all in, putting tremendous pressure on the initial bettor and raiser. We can win this pot on the flop, uncontested, some of the time. The times we don't win it uncontested, we will often have around 45 percent equity against our opponent's range. Overall, we can win this pot the majority of the time when we move all in.
In order to play big draws the most profitably, you must be willing to play them aggressively in situations where you can create some fold equity.
Moving all in is the best play.
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