This is Part 2 of a 3-part series on interpreting your opponent’s 3bet range. Parts 2 and 3 shall focus on dynamic flops. Part 1 focuses on static flops.

Dynamic flops are characterized by having many possible turn-river transitions which change the current nuts. As a case in point, top set on Ad7c2h will still be the nuts (disregarding another set becoming quads) 44% of the time by the river. By contrast the made straight on 8h7s6s remains the nuts on the river only 22% of the time. On AhQsJh the prognosis for the made straight is slightly better; KT remains the nuts 29% of the time that the board runs out.

This characteristic of dynamic flops confers a huge advantage to the player in position that is less evident on static flops. Up to a point this is reduced by the lower SPR in 3bet pots, but there is still plenty of room for manoeuvre for a player equipped with the right tools.

In Part 2 we shall discuss one example and attempt to break down our opponent’s 3bet range to inform our strategy.


We open to 3.5BB from UTG with xxxx and call a 10BB 3bet from the Button, facing the flop above with a pot size of 21.5BB with 90BB behind. How does our opponent’s range intersect with this board?

An opponent 3betting {AA$nt,KK:$NR} non-trip Aces and non-trip, non-rainbow Kings will have top set/nut straight/strong flush draw 62% of the time. This would correspond to a 5% 3betting range pre-flop. Against a nitty, big-pair focused opponent it would be foolish of us to construct a leading range with any hands which we were not willing to stack off with. Since we need 45% equity to stack-off profitably here, the only hands we can stack off with by leading the flop are {set+flush draw, the nut straight}. Since our opponent has a very +EV Continuation bet in this spot, we may as well maximize our value from the little air in his range (KK that missed) by check-raising this spot with those hands. Note that our opponent’s range is heavily polarized here but weighted to nutty hands. There is relatively little purpose in our devising a bluff-catching line/range


If we widen our opponent’s range to include excellent 4-broadway hands,3-broadway double-suited hands and good rundowns (7% of hands), we get the following break down2 :

Straight: 13.5%
Set: 27%
Nut Flush Draw: 12%

This range is still not vulnerable to us bluff-leading with a high frequency but since it is nutty only 40.5% of the time we may be able to blocker-bluff some premium KK hands (especially with the Kh). However, our pre-flop equity disadvantage with AQ$ds is now only 45%-55% and so we shall have some bluff-catchers in our continuing range. It is worth noting that with a single Ace blocker our opponents nut combinations change to {15% straight, 14.5% set}. With two blockers, our bluff-catcher AQxx faces only {15% straight, 13% set}. In both cases about 40% of our opponent’s range is pocket Kings unimproved with only 11% total of those Kings also having a flush draw. Against an opponent 3-betting this range we should be able to lead as a bluff with A987ds-type hands that we called pre-flop3.

Finally, the break down for an opponent who 3bets most of the above range but tends to flat Kings to a UTG raise pre-flop will have (41% set, 12% straight) and only a small (<5%) number of nut flush draws. If we are willing to lead around 1/2 pot on the flop we will have a profitable triple barrel against many tight opponents. If they shove their sets/straights on the flop they will have nothing to call down with (only 2.5% good two pair, 10% bottom two pair!).

Come back next week for Part 3, where we examine the 8h7s6s flop.

Show 3 footnotes

  1. AQ/AJ would be a candidate but they should not be in our calling range pre-flop with much of a frequency due to our opponent’s tight 3bet range
  2. Full range ((AA,KK,$R$R$R$R)$nt,(7654-KQJT),(8764-KQJ9)):$NR,$F$F$F$nt$ds
  3. We may have trouble balancing both a bluff-catching range and a bluff-leading range ourselves. We have to put our sets/straights somewhere! Against unobservant, exploitable opponents we can get away with both