Interesting situation that I see more and more online but have also witnessed it live more often. Where before I didn't concern myself with it because it was so infrequent it didn't matter. Well now it is starting to.
Villain is a TAG that is not creative and very predictable in his betting. They do well vs fish but not good players.
These players before would generally 3b premiums and police you with 3b's of a merged range if you played a little too aggressive. The general play I used was to 4b or fold. Why? Because the 4b would pretty much narrow their range down and allow us to play perfect. What you 4b didn't much matter because they were so predictable.
They would 5b KK and AA
They would call AK, QQ, JJ, TT, AQ depending, sometimes smaller pairs
When they called their range included more paint than pair making CBs to take it down on the flop profitable.
We could play on from here just due to the math vs range combinations and the strength of our hand.
But now I see the new dynamic where they 3b the same range but will call 4bs with AA/KK and not 5b them if they are heads up with you. They still fold their air.
So while 4b'ing trash might still be profitable depending on how much of a merged range they are raising you with. The play with them is very simple. I was wondering what we do with hands like 88-JJ that actually have real value post flop.
So now the range shifts if we just include AK and TT+. Or even AQ and TT+. Now if we have a hand like JJ we face 16-24 combos of paint + 18 combos of QQ+. Makes it tough to play.
So I have been mulling this in my head. How to play these situations?!
Should we 4b, make a larger CB, and give up if called? Usually they will still fold AK/AQ unimproved. It means we commit more money to the pot post flop than they do without accurate information.
Should I call the 3b keeping the pot smaller, and X-C their CB because they will almost certainly follow up with a CB. mostly X the turn with unimproved hands. We can make a small CB on the river for value gaining a closer 1 for 1 money earned. But this also adds the chance they might bluff a river if an Ace comes with a worse hand. Small chance but it affects the outcome. Also AK and AQ now get to see 5 cards.
They are still VERY predictable post flop with their bet sizes and post flop play.
Reason why I post this is because we never have exact information on their 3b range. It takes so many hands to get an accurate gauge on this. But I see this tricky pattern more often now.
It is a weird dynamic which I am not sure the optimal line is vs this specific action from them. If the player was tough and balanced GTO would dictate I play a certain way to get exploited to lose the least. But they are not playing this way, they are just being tricky.
I ain't no math genius, ya hear? So I ask yall.