Poker Math

I have long felt intimidated by poker math–well, most any math. (Bad education: my school aimed at preparing girls for homemaking and thought math unnecessary.) This web page has beckoned to me: a free poker math tutorial. I think I’ll enroll. I really need to step up my game to keep it interesting, for me and others. Advice, anyone?

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My advice is to not get bogged down by precision. For example, if there’s 620 in the pot and it will cost 180 to call, just think 600 in the pot and 200 to call for 3-1 pot odds. This will make the math easier, and if the few % error makes a difference, you should probably look for a better spot.

So if you are getting 3-1 on a draw you will hit 1 in 3, you would be risking your chips on a spot that’s break-even in the long term. Why risk chips in the hopes of breaking even?

There are exceptions, of course. Tournament poker has a lot of situations where you just have to get it in, even when you know you are behind.

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Why risk chips in the hopes of breaking even?

Here’s the deal: It’s more fun to break even than to sit idly by. Hence the numerous admonitions to be patient. :slight_smile:

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Patience is a virtue ! Especially in poker. Eventually those cards will come.

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Haha, the example I gave of getting 3-1 on a 1 in 3 draw isn’t break even.

Let’s see if you can work out why. :slight_smile:

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Evil Sun!

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If it was done to trick you, I might be evil, but since it was a mistake, I’m just stupid.

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Stupid would be way more fun for me than evil! Hahaha

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If there’s 3k in the pot, and it costs 1k to call, you risk 1k to win 3k, which is 3-1.

If you will win 1 in 3 times, you would lose a total of 2k when you miss your draw 2 times, and win 3k the one time you hit. This puts you 1k ahead every three tries, for an average profit of 333 per try.

It would be break-even if you hit your hand 1 time in 4.

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Craig is right. Most of my winnings come from watching other players making bad plays.

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Oh, you made explaining this so easy for me! (How will I learn?!)

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I have said that in the middle of a game, when I’m playing cautiously and tight: “I need one of you to make a very bad mistake.” :slight_smile:

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