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How to Respond to the Small Donk Bet After You Miss the Flop

How to Respond to the Small Donk Bet After You Miss the Flop
  • You raise preflop and miss, then your opponent donk bets into you. @LearnWPT evaluates your options.

  • You raised pre & missed the flop, now your opponent bets first. Call, raise, or fold? Ask @LearnWPT.

DECISION POINT: In a tournament, it folds to you in the cutoff with {Q-Clubs}{10-Hearts}. You raise to 2.5x the big blind and only the big blind calls. The flop comes {K-Spades}{9-Spades}{3-Diamonds}, and the big blind bets. Action is on you.

PRO ANSWER: After calling our raise preflop, our opponent led into us on the flop with bet sizing of less than one-third of the pot. If our opponent had checked, we would have made a continuation bet.

Given the relatively small size of the big blind's bet, we can create a good risk-reward ratio on a continuation raise. Continuation raising is the strategy of raising a lead bet that occurs in a situation where the preflop raiser would have continuation bet had they been checked to on the flop.

This is a reasonable situation to make a continuation raise bluff, since we can create fold equity with a raise size that is still significantly less than the pot size.

After our opponent bets 3,900 chips, there are 17,300 chips total in the pot. We can make a raise to 8,900 and often get our opponent to fold, especially given that this raise has the implied threat of playing for entire stacks on future streets.

If we make this raise, we risk 8,900 to win 17,300, which means we only need to cause our opponent to fold on the flop around a third of the time for this raise to profitable in and of itself, without regard for our hand or any equity on future streets.

Given the implied threat of future action, this raise should result in our opponent folding more than a third of the time, which makes this a profitable spot to bluff raise.

When opponents lead for very small sized bets relative to the pot, keep in mind that the small bet sizing gives you the opportunity to make moves with excellent risk-reward ratios.

Raising this bet as a bluff is the best play.

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