If you are going to improve your poker game, then you are going to have to learn how to play poker in three-bet pots. Three-betting is such an integral part of the modern aggressive game that you simply must know how to deploy and defend.
Here is some advice on how and when to call with pocket pairs in three-bet pots, when playing cash games.
Players have a magnetic attraction to pocket pairs and believe that they have to be played in all instances, and this is simply not true.
The vast majority of the time, and especially in three-bet pots, you are playing your pocket pairs with the view of hitting a set.
If you have less than 150 big blinds in a cash game, then you are not going to get the right odds to hit your set often enough to justify a call.
So, when you are out of position, and holding a pocket pair worse than nines, just fold.
If you are in position, and know that your opponent is straightforward, then you can probably allow yourself to call, as long as you are sure that your opponent will c-bet and then fold on the turn or river a high percentage of the time.
So, when it comes down to it, there are very few occasions when a call is a positive EV play in a cash game. Instead, learn to fold, call occasionally, and play for stacks against the more aggressive opponents when you are holding pocket nines and above.
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