Sunday, August 28, 2016

I Folded Pocket Kings

This hand happened in July.  I'm in seat 5 and have worked my stack to $400.  Seat 10 is an older black guy and he has $250.  The table is playing somewhat loose.

In late position, I'm dealt K,K and make it $12.  Seat 6 calls.  Seat 10 is UTG and makes the call.  The poker room has a $500 high hand promotion going on, a mega bad beat jackpot, and a mini bad beat jackpot that is 10% of the MBBJ.

The flop comes down A,A,A!  And before I can blink, the guy in seat 10 announces all-in!  I'm stunned.  I'm thinking why would a player holding the fourth ace just shove.  I realize that he has a weak kicker and wants us to fold in order to qualify for the high hand promotion.  The high hand on the board is quad deuces with 9 minutes to go.  That's not all, the hand gets even more interesting.

It's still my turn to act.  After figuring out why he shoved, I have another dilemma on my hand.  I need to find out what constitutes a mini bad beat jackpot.  I know that to qualify for the mega bad beat jackpot a player has to lose with quad jacks.  With another player left to act behind me, I can't talk about the hand or flip my cards over before I act.

I ask the dealer what the rules are in order for a hand to qualify for the mini bad beat jackpot.  He says that aces full of tens need to be the losing hand.  But (there is always a but unfortunately) both players have to use both hole cards to qualify and each has to have an ace.

So it becomes apparent that pocket kings plus three aces on the flop are not good enough for a bad beat jackpot.  Since seat 10 shoved on the flop, there is a big chance his weak kicker would not play after the river anyway.  But, just to be sure that the bad beat jackpot rules were accurate, I ask the dealer to call the floor.  The floor manager comes over pretty quickly and repeats what the dealer had said.

I thank them for helping out and do the only thing that is acceptable...I fold.  The player in seat 6 folds as well.  Seat 10 tables A,6 for a qualifying high hand of A,A,A,A,6.  The hand was good enough to stand until the time ran out and seat 10 won $500!


  1. The "use both hole cards" requirement seems fairly standard. Before your last post, it never even occurred to me that if you shove the flop on a AAA board you could get your kicker to play. Many rooms also have a minimum pot requirement for the high hand to apply. I had not really thought about the reason for this requirement, but I assume it's to prevent some one from shoving the flop and getting both cards to play when, otherwise, if a hand went to showdown, only one would play?

    1. Not sure about other rooms but locally the minimum pot requirements are tied to when they collect the jackpot drop. No jackpot drop, no rewards for hitting the high hand or bad beat.

      On the A9 example, if a heart hits on the river, wouldn't the flush be the high hand then? I am not sure what you meant.

  2. Good read. It's usually $20 that must be in the pot.

  3. Great story. You may be the first person in the history of poker to fold Aces full of Kings! I don't usually play in rooms that have these type of promos so I would never have made the correct calculation, I wouldn't be thinking it the way you did at all.

    But...perhaps you should have called hoping for runner-runner Kings to hit that BBJ! Or would he have need a pocket pair to qualify for that?

  4. When he went all in, there was enough in the pot