I think in deep stack cash games then very few poker players really truly understand equity and how it affects the long term profitability of certain poker hands.
Let us look at an example here to start the ball rolling. You are playing in a full ring game and it gets folded around to you in the hijack seat and you have 9c-9d playing NL100.
You make it 3.50 to go and the cut-off folds. The button who is a relatively tight solid reg three bets you to 11 and both blinds fold.
Making The Right Play
Nearly every single player that I know would call with this hand. Do not get me wrong here because calling the three bet is not a terrible play.
However against a tight reg then you are behind their three betting range. But here is where it starts to get interesting because if you said to our hero to replace his pocket nines with pocket eights and then asked him what he would do then he may just do the same thing.
Change the eights to sevens and he may say that the hand was too weak and that this was a fold. However looking at frequency distribution charts over very large sample sizes reveals something very surprising.
Hands like pocket sevens do not really earn much less than hands like pocket nines. But yet in this hand example our hero would call with the nines and dump the sevens.
Three Betting Ranges
This is despite the fact that both hands are going to be in very similar difficulty against a tight three betting regs range. Running through a one million hand sample size reveals that hand equity is very close with all hands outside of the premium ones.
Aces clearly outperform kings but the gap between kings and queens is much narrower and that gap tapers down dramatically.
I would fold the pocket nines here unless the three bettor were a LAG in which case the fold is far too tight and being exploited.
One of the classic mistakes of online no limit players are to overestimate their hand equity with hands like 9-9 and 8-8 against tight regs who three bet them.