Jonathan Little Hand of the Week: Garrett Adelstein Cutting Ethan Some Slack?
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The hand I’ll be looking into today comes from the Hustler Casino Live stream and it once again involves Garrett Adelstein.
This time around, Garrett takes on a villain who is playing well above his standard stakes, which may be why he decides to do something he’s never done before.
The hand in question begins with Ethan raising to $1,200 with A♦Q♦ from UTG.
The player in the cutoff calls and then Garrett looks down at J♠J♦ on the button and 3-bets to $5,500.
The action gets back to Ethan, and folding is out of the question. The only decision is between calling and 4-betting, and out of position, you should be more inclined to 4-bet and decrease the stack sizes going to the flop to minimize the positional disadvantage.
That said, Garrett may well 5-bet jam every now and again in this spot, which is why I like Ethan’s decision to just call here. The cutoff player gets out of the way, so the hand continues heads up.
The dealer puts out A♠7♦5♥. Ethan plays the hand in the flow and checks over to Garrett who continues for $4,000, and Ethan calls.
When you flop a top pair with good kicker against a competent, aggressive opponent, your main goal should be to keep them in with all of their bluffs.
So, in my mind, Ethan has a very easy check-call on all betting rounds. He’ll lose to a few big hands some of the time, but most of the time, he’ll win a big pot.
On the turn, Garrett finds one of the two outs he needs to jump ahead as the dealer puts out the J♣. And, to be honest, if I’m in Ethan’s shoes, this probably means I’m about to lose a fairly big pot.
This isn’t the great card for Ethan, as pocket jacks and ace-jack do get there, but I see no other option for him than to check-call once again.
This is exactly what happens, as Garrett bets out for $17,000 and Ethan makes the call, bringing the pot to $55,000.
The final card is the 10♠, which improves a few more hands that Garrett may have been betting with, and after Ethan checks, Adelstein moves in for $66,500 effective.
Ethan has a tough decision to make and he takes his time to think the hand through. It boils down to what Garrett’s 3-betting range looks like in this spot.
Does he have a lot of K-X suited type of hands that could be bluffing here, or is his range more linear and value-heavy?
As Ethan is trying to make up his mind, you can hear Garrett saying “I’ve got it,” and the commentators think that he did this to show mercy.
I think Adelstein realized Ethan was about to make a big fold and decided to say something to throw him off. I don’t think he was trying to be a nice guy and save his opponent over $60,000.
Whatever Garrett’s motivation might be, the important thing is, what does Ethan do?
Does this help him reach the correct decision and fold his hand or does he make the call? Check out the video above to find out!
Jonathan Little is a two-time WPT champion with more than $7 million in live tournament winnings and best-selling author of multiple poker strategy books. If you want to learn from the best and increase your edge at the tables, make sure to get your FREE 3-day pass and check his training site at pokercoaching.com