Pot odds is one of the most neglected aspects of Texas Holdem poker, especially by the beginner and intermediate player. Some poker beginners have heard the term and a few even have a basic concept of what pot odds are, but very few of these players know how to put them to good use in a poker game. 918kiss
However knowing how to calculate and use pot odds is one of the crucial weapons that serious poker players have in their armory, one that most definitely separates them from the amateur.
Poker pot odds are often associated with complex mathematical calculations and the less serious player can feel overwhelmed at the prospect of tackling such a subject, but don’t fret, do you really think that to be a serious poker player you need to be a genius at mathematics? Do you think all the poker pros are?
Well of course the answer is that they are most definitely not all geniuses, but what they do have is a method of calculating the odds quickly and easily to see if they are in their favor in any given situation.
So let’s look at a simple, basic way of calculating the odds, remember it needs to be quick and easy so that it can be worked out quickly and accurately in the heat and pressure of a poker game.
Poker pot odds can be broken down to this simple one liner:
“If the odds of you getting the card you need to make your hand are less than the pot odds, you should bet.”
There are two sides to this equation which I will try and explain, “odds of you getting the card you need” and “pot odds.” Firstly “odds of you getting the card you need”, this one is fairly easy to understand. It’s best explained using the example of a flush or straight draw, so we’ll use a straight draw to illustrate it.
You’re in a Texas Holdem game and your pocket cards are Q T, the flop is J 4 9. In order to make a straight you need to get either a King or 8 on the turn or river so you have eight possible cards that can make your hand, four Kings and four 8s. These are known as your “out” cards.
You’ve seen five cards out of the deck, your own two pocket cards and the three flop cards. That means there’s 47 cards you haven’t seen. So the odds of you getting the card you need are: