Texas Hold'em Starting Hands Cheat Sheet
Hands such as ten-jack unsuited lose money played from early position, but are sometimes acceptable on the button. If you are looking for help on the different poker hand rankings, such as if a flush beats a straight, or two pair beats three of a kind, then visit our Poker Hand Rankings page instead. The decision of how to play your first two cards is something you face every hand, and the value of your first two cards is highly correlated to your probability of winning. I think their schedule is based on playing at the real money tables not a Tourney , in a Tourney there are other rules because your dealing with a time schedule and increasing blinds , but their tip above is not a bad one except when you follow blind , when you don't get much good hands then you have to do something somewhere. On top of the "one pair" concept, you also need to be on the lookout for an ace on the flop.
Hands such as ten-jack unsuited lose money played from early position, but are sometimes acceptable on the button. Since the value or playability of a hand changes with position, a static chart like this is no where near the complete story.
But the chart is still useful for getting a general sense of the relative merit of hands. The hand 72o ranks below 53o, but if you plug them into the Holdem Odds Calculator , in a faceoff, 72o wins more often. Again, this anomaly is due to the no-fold'em nature of the chart calculations. When paired against just each other, 72o is superior to 53o, due to the high card 7. But when they go up against other better hands at a full table, the 53o is more likely to win because of its potential to make straights.
Besides creating a feel for the game, the chart can also help fight impulses to play junk. For example, Eight-seven offsuit is a hand people know they should not play, but it is a connector, and on the button in an unraised pot we feel we can get away with it. For an education, look hands up as you play online. It is useful to note the half-way point, that is, where half the hands are worse, half are better.
If you are playing one-on-one, then far more hands are playable, and the half-way point provides a guide to roughly which hands have value. This occurs in the vicinity of hand number So for suited connectors, the average strength hand is 74s. Suited disconnectors, it's J4s, and unsuited connectors it's Q9o. All pairs are well above the median. Because of limitations noted above, there cannot be a clear cutoff point where hands stop being profitable.
Although K9o has a feeble rank of 81, good players can eke out a profit with it from last position in an unraised, family pot. Below that, hands are almost certainly never worth playing at a full table.
Although you can write volumes about detailed lines and theories on maximizing profit with this hand, other than folding there is rarely a scenario in which you can ever make a mistake with this hand pre-flop that is. Even though this is the best starting hand, if the board doesn't improve your hand you only have one pair. Keep this in mind to avoid stacking off to random two pairs and sets. Pocket kings are almost identical to pocket aces pre-flop.
Although players have folded KK pre-flop, it's rarely the correct thing to do. If someone else is dealt AA when you have KK, chances are you're going to get it all in. Don't worry about this, just write it off as a cooler and move on. The same ideas about post-flop play with AA are applicable to KK.
On top of the "one pair" concept, you also need to be on the lookout for an ace on the flop. Queens and jacks are right in the middle - below the big pairs and above the marginal pairs. These hands can be some of the trickiest to play. Unlike AA and KK, these hands are very foldable pre-flop in certain situations. If you're playing at a tight table, where people are only raising with legitimate hands, many players would say that calling after one player raises and another re-raises pre-flop can be a mistake.
If there is heavy action pre-flop, you have to assume you're either beat, or at best up against AK. You only want to continue with these hands if the board improves your hand, or your opponents back off, showing signs of weakness. No set, no bet. The only goal with these hands is to flop a set and double up through the pre-flop raiser holding pocket aces.
One Thing to Keep in Mind: The lower your pair, the greater the chance that you will find yourself in a set-over-set situation. Anytime you flop the under set in a set-over-set situation, you will be lucky if you don't lose your entire stack. For this reason, many players will refuse to play pocket pairs below fives. At a loose table, these hands are great for raising when you have position and no one has raised ahead of you.
The way to make money with these hands is to trap a loose opponent with the same top pair, weak kicker. The most important thing to keep in mind with hands such as K-Q or A-J is you almost never want to call a raise with these hands. These hands are the most commonly dominated hands when faced with a raise, and as such will lose you significant money if you get into the habit of calling raises with them. Much like AA and KK, you need to remember that one pair is a hand easily beaten.
If your opponent is a very tight player there is little chance he will be putting in large bets against you if he can't beat top pair. Suited connectors can be some of the most valuable hands in No Limit Hold 'em cash games. That being said, they aren't sure things and will miss everything far more often than they will hit it big. In middle to late position you want to play these hands with due diligence. You don't want to be calling large raises to play these hands heads up. Your goal with these hands is to play the largest pots possible for the least amount of investment possible.
You need great odds to make money on these. Similar to suited connectors, these hands are played only to take down very large pots for a very small investment. You are not playing these hands to hit an ace and get into a betting war. As explained in this article, you don't want to play against an ace, even if you have a small ace yourself.
If you don't hit a draw on the flop or better yet the nuts , you should be done with these hands. It's almost never profitable to be paying for backdoor draws. Simply put, every other hand you can be dealt is going to lose you money.
As a beginner or even intermediate player, hands that may look great - such as an off-suit Q-J or J - are simply going to lose you money in the long run. The goal as a beginner poker player is to make as few mistakes as possible.
And the best way to limit the number of mistakes you make is to reduce the number of difficult decisions you have to make.
Stick to only playing the hands in this list. Throw away the weaker of these hands when out of position, and only play against a raise if you have a very strong hand or the odds with a strong drawing hand. You'll not hit the hand much more than you'll hit it.
Play strong hands that lose less. Use the odds in your favor and ignore could have been. I think their schedule is based on playing at the real money tables not a Tourney , in a Tourney there are other rules because your dealing with a time schedule and increasing blinds , but their tip above is not a bad one except when you follow blind , when you don't get much good hands then you have to do something somewhere.
And trying to make advantage of the situation is very important in a tourney according to my opnion. Also according to the hight of your stack and the position your in your able to play more tight or loose , loose make it able to play les good hands and see if it falls for you on the table.
The Best hands you play agressive especially when some before you raised a high amount otherwise you give it a small raise hoping your going to be reraised or at least a call.
It's good to play tight when: It's never black and white in poker, usually the best strategy depends on many factors.