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How to play Pocket Jacks (and how not to)

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  • How to play Pocket Jacks (and how not to)

    I had these two hands yesterday, with very different results. The first is from the PS Womens league $1.10, blinds were 60/120 after an hour and a quarter of play. The table had been fairly loose, with a wide range of hands at showdown. The second is from a $2.20 MTT, blinds were 200/400 with a 50 ante after 2 and a quarter hours of play. With barely 10 BB it was fold or shove time, so this hand played itself.
    Bracelet Winner

  • #2
    on the first hand smooth calling preflop is an interesting play that worked well, I like the call on the flop but when you hit quads on the turn and she bets in to you again, i don't like the call here, She obviously knows she is beat from here and gives up her hand on the river. personally I would have either min raised her turn bet for value or called like you did but value bet the river, you know you have the absolute nuts on this board (and so does she probably) so putting her allin seems strange. She invested alot of chips in this pot so a bet of around 500 would of likely payed off

    as for the second hand I would have deffinately raised preflop maybe even shoved depending on your reads of the big stacks in the blinds.
    Last edited by Triggz88; Tue Mar 22, 2011, 02:41 PM.


    • #3
      as for the first play . i think your should raise preflop. jj in a multiway pot is rarely good and you only hit a set like 1 in 8 times. if the person to your right is on QQ KK or AA they are calling you anyway and you will get their chipstack post flop. the difficulty is if you get 3 bet preflop you have to have the discipline to just call and/or laydown to an all in pre or a big raise post if you havent hit your set. nice hand though ... it does pay from time to time to vary your play and because you decided to play the hand that way i think a min reraise post flop is a good play. if they are on AA KK they are likely going get it all in there and your are huge. BTW if the table is loose and you raise pre with jj you are likely getting called too and when you hit your set betting will get worse hands to call.

      Originally posted by Triggz88 View Post

      as for the second hand I would have deffinately raised preflop maybe even shoved depending on your reads of the big stacks in the blinds.
      definitely raise preflop. your chipstack relative to the blinds is at 10x ... and your not folding after committing a 3rd of your chipstack in that situation. if your unlucky and an A hits board given the same hole cards then the bigstack can steal if you check down the flop. i think your only play there at 10x bb is shove ... are the fives calling there from the big stack if you shove ... possibly (depends on whats happened recently) because he may put you on a week A or even K x and if he calls 55 vs jj your a huge favourite to dbl e up. if he's tight he doesn't want to dble you up there's a good chance hes folding too. the board is unlucky for you but you gave him the correct odds to set mine there. either way you ended up with all your chips in the middle. if you ship preflop you have some fold equity there. if someone has QQ or better there calling you anyway. if the deep stacks are on AK AQ then you are forcing them to a decision preflop and you are a slight favourite against those hands. and they may likely call but ... then they have to hit.

      lets look at the same situation if the bigstacks has AA and he raises ... are you going to fold your jj ?

      he may do the same with A 10 depending on how aggressive he is ... now its the same situaition for you?

      remember short stack play is easy, fold or ship with a premium hand. force your opponents to a decision. if you are unlucky and he/she's on a premium hand AA KK QQ your dead anyway.

      if he doesn't hit a five and you ship post flop your not getting any more of his chips. he folds. the only cards that call you there are the ones that beat you. if hes on an overpair and he limps to slowplay then its the same for u.

      i understand your pain jj is a tough hand ... feast or famine.



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