The â€œfirst betâ€ of a hand (for this example we will go with preflop action) is the big blind.Â The â€œsecond betâ€ is the first
raiser.Â The â€œthree betâ€ is the person that makes a re-raise.
1.Â Â Â Â Â Â Big blind posts their $1 big blind.
2.Â Â Â Â Â Â Everyone folds to the Button (aka dealer) who raises to $4.
3.Â Â Â Â Â Â The Small Blind re-raises to $15.Â (this is your 3bet)
Iâ€™ve done some examining of small stakes players playing limits from 10nl to 50nl and some of the more novice type players never 3bet unless they have AA or KK, and sometimes not
even then.Â Why?Â They are scared, afraid, cowards â€¦ or they feel a hand like AK is just a speculative hand and you have to flop something for it to be of any
value.Â Although in *some* games that might be the case, you are almost always be better off 3betting (with monsters in bad position, and decent hands in late
position).Â Itâ€™s a move that shows tremendous strength and at the nitty lower levels (50nl and below) at cash tables gets way too much respect â€“
something that you can exploit.
Letâ€™s take a look at the classic 3bet preflop example that wins it right there preflop.Â This is just one way of winning a hand with a 3bet.
The plan works to perfection and I take a very sizable pot down for this level.Â
Hereâ€™s another example of preflop 3betting action with KK.Â Letâ€™s take a look at the hand and then analyzed what happened.
The villain in this hand, using Holdem Manager which keeps stats at the table for you, is a 50/14/3 (translates to a loose maniac player).Â Our
villain here gets cheeky and raises it up to $14 preflop which is way too much obviously. Our hero has two choices (obviously not folding) here â€“ either call, and hope to avoid
the board spiking an A on the flop so heâ€™s pretty sure heâ€™s in the clear, or 3bet it and probably end up heads up or take it down now.Â He 3bets the
right amount he should have (probably should have been to $35 to $40) but the effect is the same â€“ the villain decides that the range is too strong and the pot too expensive for
him to continue with his hand (again probably something like JJ, QQ, AQ, AK, etc).
So what type of hands and situations are you looking for to 3bet?Â Basically it boils down to needing (most times) a good hand (JJ-AA, AQ, AK) with decent position (Button, Cutoff, and
Hijack seats) â€“ and keep to that at first as you try this if you are just exploring 3bets in your game.Â Otherwise you might need to incorporate it into your stealing
metagame like in the hand below â€¦
A9 is actually a great hand in HU play which is basically the situation in this hand.Â The hero has been stealing and our big blind decided to grow a pair and start
defending.Â Unfortunately for him our hero is stubborn, mean, and aggressive and recognize this is probably just someone with a marginal hand trying to defend.Â So our hero
3bets and our big blind is faced with a huge pot holding a marginal hand â€“ and he folds.Â This play right here is *very* specialized against opponents and situations,
but hopefully you get the idea of the overall holistic strategy.
Remember the goal with a 3bet without AA or KK is to win the hand without a showdown.Â If you get a caller for your 3bet and that person checks the turn, thatâ€™s your
queue to pounce on the pot.Â You canâ€™t 3bet only when you have AA or KK, otherwise nobody will ever give you value for those hands because itâ€™s the
only time when you 3bet and plainly obvious you are holding those cards.Â By opening up your 3bet range you keep your opponents guessing, take control of the pot, and extend value to big
In this article we'll look at some hands from my hand histories at low stakes, specifically $0.50-$1 No Limit Hold'em (both 6max and Full Ring) and also give HUD stats of the villains and see
how that might affect our thinking in terms of making a decision.