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Red Chip Poker:

Late Position
Written by
Doug Hull,
James Sweeney,
Christian Soto
www.RedChipPoker.com

Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Copyright 2014 by Doug Hull & James Sweeney


All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof
may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever
without the express written permission of the publisher
except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.
First Printing, 2014 v2
www.RedChipPoker.com

All rights reserved.


ISBN-13: 9781495421273

Buy the e-book direct RedChipPoker.com

Introduction

Symbol

Meaning
Difficulty 1 of 4
Too loose
Too tight
Played out of position
Bet sizing tell
Maximizing value
Making a thin value bet
Player has predictable or straightforward play
Bluffing with an empty or nearly empty range
Tilty, or lashing out
Slowplay
Changing gears
Floating, intention to bluff later
Bluff
Hand reading or bad hand reading
Fold
Limiting call (better would have raised)
Playing the odds correctly
All-in pre-flop
Aggressive

Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Hands

hand

Weak Hands That are Ahead

hand

Betting Straights on Flush Boards

hand

Facing a Turn Check-Raise in a Three-Bet Pot

hand

Inducing a Squeeze

hand

Thin Value on an Awful River

hand

Double the Floats for Double the Fun

hand

Turning a Medium Pair into a Big Bluff

2
3
4
5
6
7

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20
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24
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28
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33
page

37
Page

44
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49

Introduction

Hands

hand

Range Merging with an Overbet

hand

Limp-Shoving to Exploit the Table

hand

Fish in the Middle

hand

Taking a Passive Line Against Aggressive Players

hand

Big implied Odds with Big Stacks

hand

Failed Bluff Gets Bailed Out

8
9

10
11
12
13

Missions

page

56
page

61
page

70
page

76
page

81
page

84
page

87
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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Acknowledgements
Doug Hull
Thank you to Bill, Martin and the rest of the
WPDG regulars in Las Vegas that created a great
study group and gave a venue for James and I to
meet and eventually form this partnership. Thanks
to Laura for all the tireless editing. She is the best
poker player that has never played a hand of poker.
James SplitSuit Sweeney
I would first and foremost like to thank my
fianc Denae and son Prestyn. Without their
unwavering support I would have never finished
this book. I love you both!
I would also like to thank my parents, sister,
and friends for their lifetime of support. A special
thanks to my collaborative authors Doug Hull
and Christian Soto for creating a great atmosphere to write and share our
knowledge. And a final thank you to Chris Cwar Warren, TDK, Greg
Walker, every student, every customer, and every single person who has given
me constructive criticism throughout the years. Cheers!
Christian Soto
First and foremost, I would like to thank my
family for an astounding amount of patience
throughout the writing of this book and all their
continued support throughout my life.
My best friends, Sean Meyer and Paul Alarcon,
for their words of encouragement from day one on
this journey.
For entire the East Coast poker community, thank you, for providing a
great atmosphere to play, learn, and grow as a poker player.
Enjoy the read.

Introduction

Guide to Reading These Hands


(Adapted from Poker Plays You Can Use by Doug Hull)
This book is laid out differently than other poker books. A tabular format
is used so that all the relevant stack sizes, positions, holdings and table images
are easily seen during every street.
$2-$5
Image:
Foxwoods
UTG
LAG

Action:

Hand:

Call/Call

Starting
Stack:
$450

Cutoff

Bad regular

Call/Fold

Button

Hero

$30

Covers

In this format, the action of each player is in the action column. If a player
makes multiple actions per street, they are separated by slashes. This hand
would be written out as follows:
A Loose Aggressive player limps Under the Gun. It is folded to a bad
regular in the cutoff who also limps. Hero raises on the Button and only the
LAG calls.
This format is continued on each street in a different table. The starting
stacks for each street are updated to make the action clearer.
Pot: $72

Range:

Stack:

LAG

$50/Fold

$420

Hero

$200

Covers

(UTG)

(Button)

We can see that on the turn the LAG bet and then folded to our raise.
The other thing you will notice is that each chapter starts with a table
showing the Villains flaw, the difficulty rating of the play we made, and the
exploit that we used. The icons are there to make it very fast to flip through
the book for the situations you are looking for later.
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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

A Guide to Reading This Book.


(Adapted from Poker Plays You Can Use by Doug Hull)
This book is has two types of content. The first and lengthier type looks
at different hands that illustrate a pattern in your opponents strategy. These
patterns are identified and then exploited. The second type of content is a set
of missions for you to accomplish at the poker table. Each of these missions
is designed to give you concrete actions you can take to either eliminate a
weakness in your own game or to exploit a weakness in your opponents.
Most opponents at the poker table have a fairly static way that they think
about poker. I like to classify players roughly as those that make calling errors
(too loose), versus folding errors (too tight), versus betting errors (too
aggressive), versus checking errors (too passive).
This makes them fall into predictable errors. When someone is
predictable, they are exploitable. This book is all about identifying typical
patterns and how to exploit them. For example, players are often announcing
how they feel about their hands with bet sizing tells. This book shows you
what to do when they fail at information hiding in this way.
When you have embraced the lessons of this book, you will find it much
easier to fire in big bluffs. You will no longer be thinking about your own
weak hand but instead will be thinking about the Villains weak range. You
can fearlessly fire when your focus is on the opponents cards rather than
your own.
The hand reviews allow you to hear my inner dialog as a hand unfolds.
The authors are all aggressive players, but it is not wild flinging of chips. It is
a cold, calculated brand of aggression that is designed to get better hands to
fold and worse hands to call. This book will teach you to deviate from the
typical strategies that most people use. You will then be able to adopt this
much more exploitive and aggressive style. It will take a lot of work to get
from here to there, but it will be worth it. The missions in the later part of the
book will give you the roadmap to get there. They are not there to be simply
read. They are there as milestones for you to reach for on your path to better
poker.

Introduction

Introductory Tools
This should not be your first poker book and probably not your second or
third either. There is an expectation that the reader has a baseline
understanding of the game. We use some tools in this book to help with the
math away from the table. Using these tools after a session will help tune
your intuition for when you are playing in real-time. Here are some
recommended concepts and tools that will help in understanding this book
and poker in general.
All links below are on RedChipPoker.com.
http://redchippoker.com/important-poker-tools-concepts/

Combos
Combos, Combinations, Combinatorics...they all mean the same thing.
They mean we are looking at hands from a mathematical point of view and
counting the ways our opponent can make certain hands. If you are totally
new to the concept you should start with this short and sweet video from
ThePokerBank.com:

Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Starting from preflop, we know that a player can have:


Six combos of any pocket pair

Four combos of any suited hand

Twelve combos of any unsuited hand

Sixteen combos of any unpaired hand (which includes both the suited
and unsuited combos)
This is very simple and a basic building block of understanding preflop
combinations. Next we can look at blockers and how those influence the
equation. Say for instance we have Ad7d and we are trying to figure out
how many combinations of AK our opponent can have. Well because we
have the Ad it's impossible for our opponent to have AdKd since there is
only one Ad in the entire deck. Similarly, our opponent cannot have AdKs,
AdKh, AdKc either. Due to our Ad blocker we know our opponent's
possible AK combos have been reduced from 16 down to 12.
We can also use the concept of combos postflop. For instance,
assume the flop is As Qs 8h. We know that there are:

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6 combos of an non-set pocket pair like 22


3 combos of any set like 88 (8c8s, 8c8d, 8s8d)
12 combos of any AK (3 unseen Aces * 4 unseen Kings)
9 combos of top two pair (3 unseen Aces * 3 unseen Queens)

Introduction

We can also use the concept of blockers postflop. For instance, because
the As is on the board it is impossible for someone to have AsKs. If
someone would only have AQ suited in their preflop range then they can
only have 3 combos of top two pair (AdQd, AcQc, AhQh). If you need
some extra material on this concept check out this video:

In this book we discuss combos and blockers to hand read and


calculate the EV of various lines. These concepts may seem a little technical
at first, but with some practice they will become second nature and help
you become a great hand reader.
Expected Value (EV)
EV, short for expected value, is the mathematical way of saying this
play is expected to net me $X in the longrun. If you are not comfortable
with EV formulas yet watch this video so that the formula EV =
(%W*$W)-(%L*$L) is no longer petrifying.

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Equity Calculators
We use equity calculations quite often when analyzing hands away from
the table. This allows us to more accurately gauge the correctness of our
lines, as well as develop intuition when estimating equities in real-time. If
you do not already have an equity calculator we suggest this free calculator
from PokerStrategy.com. You can learn how to use this software with
this free video from ThePokerBank.com

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Introduction

We always start by entering either hands or ranges and then simply


evaluating their equities. You can enter a single hand by going here:

Or you can enter a range by going here:

If there are multiple players involved you can always enter their hole
cards or ranges as well by repeating this process. Once you have all the
hands/ranges input, just click Evaluate to see their respective equities.

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

You can also enter Flop, Turn, and River cards if the hand went
postflop. To do this just go here:

Then make sure to click Evaluate again to update the equities with the
new information.

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Introduction

There are lots of equity calculations in the book that we use to find the
best lines. Estimating your opponent's range of hands to input into an
equity calculator can be tricky, but with practice and experience you will get
better at hand reading. The only bad news is that you will not have time to
use an equity calculator at the table, but enough off-table practice will allow
you to more accurately guess your hand's equity and thus take better
mathematical lines.
Fold Equity Calculators
There are many times in this book when we use a Fold Equity
Calculator to estimate how many folds we need to make a +EV shove. The
exact tool that we use is the FE Calculator from FPPPro.com. Here is a
quick video showing you how to use it:

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

To use this tool we just need four pieces of information:

The effective stack size


The estimated equity of our hand
The current pot size
The size of any bet or raise we are facing

The effective stack size is how much we are risking when shoving. We
can figure out estimated equity using an equity calculator. The current pot
size is how much money is in the middle before we shove. And we also fill
in the size of any bet or raise, if applicable.
So if we take an example where the pot is $80 and we are planning to
open-shove a pure bluff with zero equity for $50, we can fill everything in
like this:

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Introduction

This tells us that villain needs to fold at least 38% of the time for this to
be 0EV, or breakeven. So if our opponent would fold more than 38% of
the time it would be a +EV shove, and if he would fold less than 38% of
the time it would be a -EV shove.

Just like equity calculations, we do not have the time to use them at the
table, but enough practice with them off the table will help us understand
inflection points more easily.
Flopzilla
Flopzilla is an excellent tool that is used for understanding how ranges
hit boards. You can also explore combinations, range strengths, and how
certain hole cards hit flops. This video from ThePokerBank.com gives
you a free in-depth introduction to this powerful piece of software.

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Hand Reading
Everything we do in poker is based upon our opponent's range. Good
hand reading skills will allow you to pick off bluffs, properly estimate your
equities, and play better both preflop and postflop. This video shows you
the 3 L's Of Hand Reading to give you a framework for putting players
on a better range of hands.

Fold Equity charts


Fold equity calculators find out how often the Villain must fold in a
situation to make a shove correct. The calculators take in the size of pot
and bets. They also take the equity of your hand when you are called. All
of these calculators that we found take in a specific number for your equity
when called and also take a specific percentage that the villain will fold to
your shove. These two things are hard to estimate. We created new
visualization that allows for a full range of values for these two inputs:

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Introduction

EV of shove of $90 into a pot of $23 over a bet of $10


100

25

25

90
80

50

60

-2
5

50

25
0
-5

30

0
0

25

5
-7

10

-25

20

75

40

50

Fold percent

70

20

40
60
Win percent when called

80

100

In this chart, the contour lines represent locations of equal Expected


Value. We of course want high expected value. The highest point is in the
lower right where we win 100% of the time when called and they fold 0%
of the time, i.e. they always call us when we have the nuts. The lowest
point is on the lower right where we always lose when called and they
always call.
We can see that on the top of the chart the expected value is the same
regardless of the equity when called. This makes sense because the top of
the chart means they always fold.
These charts show us that the more likely the Villain is to fold, the
more often we should bet. See the line labelled 0. On the extreme left if
they fold 80% of the time, it does not matter what our cards are, we break
even on the shove. Since our hand almost always has some equity when
called we actually move horizontally to the right from that point and are
moving into +EV spaces.

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Weak Hands That are Ahead

(Villains flaw)

(Difficulty rating)

(Heros exploit)

With good post-flop skills, you can make the best of a bad situation. I
entered this hand light, simply as a button isolation. Just picking up loose
cash from limpers can be a profitable hobby while you are waiting for true
value hands. I got caught doing this with a dreadful piece of suited garbage,
yet won a nice pot in an interesting way.
$2-$5
Image:
Mohegan
Sun
MP2
Unknown

Action:

Hand:

Starting
Stack:

Call/Call

$535

Hijack

Unknown

Call/Call

Covers

Button

Hero

$35

$485

This is a pure button isolation. There is a big difference between


limping behind with garbage on the button and raising with it. By raising,
these Villains are put to the test immediately. Whenever we raise, we want
to have fold equity. If the Villains are going to call without thinking, then
we are just bloating the pot. That is rarely our goal with hands. Our call
puts $22 in the pot, so a raise to $27 would be a pot sized raise. However,
in this game we are always getting one or two callers with that raise, so we
are better off making it $35 or $40 here. We arrive at the figure by taking a
standard open raise size and adding one big blind per limper. We do this
because all bets should be thought of as a percentage of the pot. Each
limper makes the pot bigger so our raise should be bigger also. We are
making this size of raise with a variety of hands, such as AA, KQ, and T9s.
Because of this, it is really hard to put us on a range. This makes it a tough
decision for our opponents. We do not want them to have easy decisions.

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Hands

Getting called by both limpers was not the outcome we were looking
for, but we still have cards, position, and initiative. On most flops we will
consider a one barrel bluff, but rarely more than that. We hit this particular
flop well, so we have more options.
Pot: $112
Unknown

$40

Starting
Stack:
$500

Unknown

Call

Covers

Hero

???

$450

(MP2)

(Hijack)

(Button)

Range:

Let us try and think like the first Villain. What does this small donk bet
mean? He has a reason for this bet. What is it?
He is betting for value against the flush draw. He believes he is ahead,
so he should bet to charge the draws. He does not love his hand, so he does
not want to build a huge pot. We think the bet means he has a King, but
not one with a strong kicker. If he was going to lead into a draw, he likely
would have bet heavier.
What about the second Villain who just calls? Because of the small bet,
a wide range of weak hands and draws would be invited to come in. His
range has lots of weak hands like Kx, pocket pairs, 9x, flush draws and
inside straight draws. If he had a stronger hand like a set or two pair he
would have raised for value on such a draw heavy board. This $40 call
reduces the likelihood that his range includes sets and two pair
combinations.
Given the ranges, the best play is to semi-bluff raise in effort to fold
out better pairs. Specifically, this should fold out the weak top pair that we
expect MP2 to have.
Pot: $112
Unknown

$40/???

Starting
Stack:
$500

Unknown

Call

Covers

Hero

$180

$450

(MP2)

(Hijack)

(Button)

Range:

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Red Chip Poker: Late Position

Are we crazy? Do we hate our chips? No. The donk bettor does not
have a strong enough hand to call. We can deduce this because of the size
of his donk bet. With that assumption, he is likely to fold when faced with
aggression.
If either player has a better flush draw, we hold two of their outs and
have a pair, putting us in a good spot.

Hand

vs.
Equity on flop
Us vs. Them
52% vs. 48%

Equity on
non-flush turn
Us vs. Them
70% vs. 30%

60% vs. 40%

77% vs. 23%

97% vs. 3%

100% vs. ~0%

It is unclear which flush scenario is most likely, but we can accomplish


two goals with one raise. We can semi-bluff hands that beat us, such as Kx
and 9x, while getting value for our middle pair versus the draws.
What about the bet sizing? It is an awkward stack size for this. There is
$192 in the pot and we have $450 behind. Any raise we make commits us
to the pot if either player decides to shove. That being said, this raise risks
$180 to win $192. Even if we had no equity, this raise only needs to
generate folds about half the time to be a good bet. Because this is just
under a pot sized bet, if he folds half the time, that pays for the other half
where he calls. We then sometimes go on to win also.
Think about that, if both players fold here just 50% of the time, we
could profitably raise like this with blank cards. We do not have blank
cards. The best possible hand here is KK, and we can draw out against that
set with a flush about 30% of the time. Similarly, the best possible flush
draw is not ahead of us because we hold a pair and they cannot hold a pair
plus flush right now.
We have at least 50% equity against all reasonable flush draws and are
behind any Kx or Nine with a better kicker hands. Against a full range of
reasonable flush draws and Kx hands we have 53% equity. A raise here is
profitable.

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Hands

Pot: $192
Unknown

$40/Fold

Starting
Stack:
$500

Unknown

Call/Call

Covers

Hero

$180

$450

(MP2)

(Hijack)

(Button)

Range:

Once Hijack calls, we put him on a range including KJ+ and reasonable
flush draws. With a flush draw we would expect better hands to bet and
raise. While most turns will not be a Nine, Five, or Diamond, our plan is to
shove any turn that he checks given our fold equity. When we get to the
turn there will be $512 in the pot, and we will have $270 left. If we assume
he calls our turn shove with KJ+, then we would have 31% equity even
with a turn card that does not improve our hand. With an EV calculator we
see this is profitable to the tune of $56.
Pot: $512
Unknown

Check/Fold

Starting
Stack:
Covers

Hero

Shove

$300

(Hijack)

(Button)

Range:

The Villain is getting about 3:1 here, and he would be right to call even
with AT of Diamonds versus our specific hand. However, he has no way to
know his pair outs are good and he folds.

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