Coin-Flips: A flip or not a flip

This thread is directly for BakeyBake.

I did not need to put this out there, so dude give me credit for not staying silent. You and I argued over what constitutes a coin-flip. You basically resorted to personal insults. We agreed to go play for 50k HU, wouldn’t ya know it as soon as I register, my browser locks up. You did as most would scarfed my blinds untill I returned, then reluctantly lost 1 hand to even things back up so we could play fairly. I commend you for that action. ( replay: that hand was not collusion )

We then played a few hands untill you called my all in, being behind in the hand and fewer chips, you sucked out on the river… It happens, but to me that tells me that you also take unecessary risks… While I can fart 50k in my sleep you cannot, enjoy your xtra 50k… that was 1/2 of your bankroll… Please refrain from personal insults in the future, and I am not making a formal complaint.

The crux of this is… the fact that BakeyBake said 100%, no pro “ever” has said such hands as AA vs KK, AK vs AQ, or J2 vs K2… are coinflips. I am gonna put good cash on the table to say, that yes somewhere, at sometime, a pro has referred to these hands as basically coinflips. Anyone that says “never” or “always” usually is (boolian - false) wrong…

In any coinflip, it only takes 1 card to chg who is ahead, so I want to hear from everyone else thier views… I personally don’t see a big difference between Q8 vs J10… and KQ vs KJ… both cases 1 person is ahead and it takes but 1 card to flip that. ( discuss, plz )

BakeyBake beat me 1 time HU for 50k, congrats… ( 1 time )… call me when you get 4million.

Sarah -

I think you may have a misunderstanding on what a “coin-flip” hand is here. A coin flip hand is one that closely approximates the 50/50 outcome of a coin flip, not any hand where the next card can “flip” who is leading. While you don’t get exact 50/50 hands in poker, generally a range of no wider than 45/55 will be referred to as a coin flip.

Perhaps you went to extremes to make a point here but I would retract the bet offer that no pro ever said AA vs KK was a coin flip because I doubt any pro has ever confused an 82/17 hand with a 50/50 hand. Nearly the same odds for all over vs under pairs. As a less extreme case, the AK vs AQ hand is in the 72/23 range and absolutely not a coin flip. Similar odds for any hand with matching high cards and dominated 2nd card.

No 2 hole cards are a lock to win every time but neither are they all coin flips. I think its just a case of semantics here.

BTW - I am sure you know better than to put much weight into the results of any 1 meeting. Ask him to play 100 times at any stakes and the better player should win that contest almost all of the time. 1 event is nearly meaningless - get a large sample to smooth out the variance and the results will reflect more of the skill levels of each player.

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Yes it is semantics, its also math… I admitted to being “technically” wrong, I also admitted to losing a HU match ( wonder if BakeyBake wouldda started this thread if he had lost ). Sometimes the “spirit of the rules” and the “rules” are 2 different things… just as “basically a coinflip” and “a coinflip” can be differentiated. Sometimes tho they are not…

Its kinda like the debate over what a “bingo” really is, without letting this thread diverge… I love math, and yes 83/17 =/= 50/50.

I won’t worry about 50k, I’m up 3-400k in the last week or so. But I still stick with my story that more than 1 pro, on more than 1 occasions, in an interview or hand discussion… said “… its basically a coin-flip …”. I guess see a difference between AK vs A2 and AK vs AQ (preflop).

If you could fart cold beers, you would indeed be the perfect woman! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

AK v AQ or KQ v KJ or AA v KK are examples of dominated hands, not coinflips.

When people talk about coinflips, it’s usually a pair v 2 overs, like JJ v AK or the like.

Unless you think I’m wrong, in which case I am wrong and will say, “yes dear” and just shut up.

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lets look @ that … JJ vs AK … player 2 has 6 outs (raw), and if player 2 hits, player 1 has 2 outs (usually) … lets also assume that this is pre-flop. Compare this ( still preflop ) to AK vs AJ … player 2 has 3 outs, yet player 1 had 3 outs also to re-take the lead if player 2 hits a card.

Fine I give up, “yes, Dear”.

Most of the times you hear the term, they are allin preflop, usually with a pair vs 2 overcards, but there are times when it’s not a cointoss preflop, but becomes one on the flop.

An example would be 2 red aces vs something like 9-10 of hearts. Not that close preflop, but it could be a cointoss on a flop like QJ4 with 2 hearts. The 9-10 is statistically ahead with 15 outs twice plus a small chance for runner runner trips or 2 pair, but the backdoor flush, broadway, and full house outs help the aces close the gap a little, so it ends up about 51-49 in favor of the 9-10s… a cointoss.

I don’t think it’s possible to have a cointoss at the turn, because the underdog hand would need something like 23 outs to make it close enough to call it a cointoss.

Heads-up has so much variance, you would need to play at least 10 times to see who the better player is, although you can usually tell quickly just from how someone plays (in this case you are 100% certainly better than whoever that person is).

But yeah, a coinflip is a hand that is close to 50/50. How close is debatable because people always call QQ/JJ vs AK a coinflip, but the pocket pair actually wins 56+% of the time, whereas A2 will beat JTs ~52% of the time, but that is not usually called a coinflip. AKs vs a pocket pair under TT is about as close to 50/50 as it gets (which says something about the value of AK preflop).

It’s really interesting and helpful to use a poker equity calculator to learn about how cards perform against each other or to examine old hands. Here are a couple of good free ones.

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Here is one more:



While we are at it, might as well name a few good GTO solvers…

GTO Range Builder - Web app. They limit what you can do with the free version though.

PioSOLVER - Lots of pros use this one.

SimplePostflop - Lets you start the analysis preflop.

Eh, might as well throw in my fave preflop Nash equlibrium solver…

Simple Nash - It’s free. Designed for SnGs, but also works for MTTs.


Well Sassy; you are wrong…end of discussion.