Could You Fold the Second Nuts? A Tricky River Decision
In today's tournament hand I take a fairly standard line after defending my big blind, making top pair and check-calling both the flop and turn before rivering the second-best possible hand. But then I face a big, worrisome bet from my opponent — what would you do?
The blinds were at 2,000/4,000 with a 500 ante, and a loose-aggressive player opened for 8,000 from the hijack seat. This was a younger player with a big stack of about 500,000 who had earlier opened with -suited from early position.
It folded around to me in the big blind where had about 180,000 to start the hand and I'd been dealt . I called, and the flop came , giving me top pair. I checked, my opponent bet 9,500 into the 22,500 pot, and I called.
The turn was the and I checked again, and my opponent fired again, this time with an almost half-pot bet of 20,000. I called once more, bringing the pot up to 82,500. With each of these calls, I discuss in the video below my thinking as well as the merits of other options.
The river was the , making me a heart flush (and the second nuts). I checked one more time, giving my opponent the opportunity to bluff and/or perhaps try to value bet with lesser flushes. But he bet quite big — 68,500 (nearly half what I had left behind) — putting me to a relatively tough decision.
Take a look to see what I did and what happened, and hear further discussion of my decisions in the hand:
Have you ever made a hero fold on the river with the second nuts? How would you have played this hand?
Jonathan Little is a professional poker player and author with over $6,300,000 in live tournament earnings. He writes a weekly educational blog and hosts a podcast at JonathanLittlePoker.com. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanLittle.
Be sure to complete your PokerNews experience by checking out an overview of our mobile and tablet apps here. Stay on top of the poker world from your phone with our mobile iOS and Android app, or fire up our iPad app on your tablet. You can also update your own chip counts from poker tournaments around the world with MyStack on both Android and iOS.