Call or Fold? Facing Turn Shove on Eight-High Board With Pocket Kings

Call or Fold? Facing Turn Shove on Eight-High Board With Pocket Kings

DECISION POINT: In a $2/$5 no-limit hold'em cash game, it folds to you in middle position with {K-Hearts}{K-Spades} and you raise. The hijack and the big blind both call, and the flop comes {8-Clubs}{7-Clubs}{2-Hearts}. The big blind checks and you bet. The hijack folds and the big blind calls. The turn is the {3-Hearts}. The big blind moves all in. Action is on you...

PRO ANSWER: Your opponent has moved all in for well over a pot-sized bet on the turn. What do you do with pocket kings?

In this hand, we raised preflop with {K-Hearts}{K-Spades} and got two callers. The flop is highly coordinated, with both straight and flush draws present. This devalues our kings; however, with only two opponents we should still make a continuation bet.

After the big blind calls our continuation bet, the player moves all in on the turn for nearly twice the size of the pot. We are getting worse pot odds to continue when players make overbets. Therefore in order to call overbets like this one, we need to believe our hand is best relatively often.

One key factor in this hand is the stack size of the big blind. Our opponent started the hand with around 60 big blinds. The hand range that an average player will get all in preflop with 60 big blinds is wider than if the player had 100 or 150 big blinds.

We can expect that this player would take this action with several one-pair hands that are worse than ours, such as {10-}{10-}, {J-}{J-}, {Q-}{Q-} and {8-}{x-}. There are two flush draws present, so our opponent could play draws in this way as well.

Overall, we will win this hand often enough to justify calling, despite our opponent's overbet.

Calling is the best play.

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