Making Pot Odds Simple and Easy

Mathematics: Flushes & Straights : Simple Pot Odds : Implied Odds : Reverse Implied Odds

Making Pot Odds Simple

If you are reading this article, I assuming that you have read through the earlier article on playing flush and straight draws. If not, stop jumping the gun sunshine - you've got to learn to walk before you can run.

Read over the previous article to get a basic understanding before you start using tips and tricks, you will thank me for it at a later date.

Why make pot odds easier to work with?

Stupid question I know, but aside from the fact that not many people are too bothered to run through calculations when on a draw (when it is going to be easier and more fun to just lump it all in), using tips and tricks for pot odds will help you to make faster decisions.

Even if you hate maths, pot odds can be really straightforward. It's just about taking that first step.

The article that went over the essentials of pot odds was quite full-on, and probably left a number of you a little angry at me. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, as this article should go a long way to numbing the pain that the first article delivered by highlighting how pot odds can be used a lot more easily than you might think.

Making pot odds easier to work with.

Thankfully, you do not need to work out the likelihood of your draw being completed on every hand. Instead of figuring out that there are 9 spades left in the deck, 38 cards won't help you... and so on, you can just take note of the odds for the most common situations and go from there. The most common drawing hands that you are going to come across will be flush draws and straight draws, so just remember those. No need for any messing around.

Draw Odds Keep It Simple
Flush 4.2:1 4:1
Straight 4.9:1 5:1

Try this simple and free pot odds calculator program to help you get grips with using pot odds.

The exact odds for the flush and straight draws have been given in the middle, with the simplified odds on the right.

These simple odds make it a lot easier for you to work out whether or not to make the call for your draw, so you can make a much quicker decision than if you tried working with decimals. I personally do not work with decimals, but I can tell you for free that the slight lack of accuracy is not going to make much (if any) impact on the amount of money that you win.

If you just remember these key ratios, then you will dramatically reduce the time it takes for you to figure out your pot odds. You can skip the first step and just work out the ratio of the bet in relation to the size of the pot. So figure out the pot odds, compare them with the odds of hitting your flush or straight and see which ratio is bigger. Remember...

If your pot odds are bigger than your chances of hitting - CALL
If your pot odds are smaller than your chances of hitting - FOLD

It may be a good idea to just note these odds down next to your computer for the next few times you play until you can remember them off by heart without having to refer to your note.

Pot odds tips.

As far as tips for working out pot odds goes, there are not too many trade secrets hanging around. You already have a shortcut to working out the odds of completing a draw (just remember the essential ones), and after that the rest of the work is pretty simple.

Try not to let the whole idea of working stuff out at the table make the game any less fun, because it isn't difficult when you know how, and I can assure you that the extra winnings will help to put a smile back on your face.

A good point to remember is that practice really does make perfect when it comes to calculating pot odds when you are on a draw. You do not need to be a super mathematician (although a good understanding of numbers will help) to work out your odds, it just requires a little effort.

If you feel that you are comfortable with your pot odds right now, you will want to start taking a look at the idea of implied odds. Fortunately there are no calculations for implied odds, but they will help you to look at your pot odds in a different light.

Go back to the sublime Texas Hold'em guide.

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