Monday, December 1, 2008

Online Texas Hold'em Poker Bad Beats

Bad beats, as I define it, is taking a winning hand and losing with it. Bad beats are no fun, but happen a lot more than the statistics say they should. The hardest part about bad beats is recovering from them.

Good Poker players will suffer MORE than their share of bad beats because good poker players are playing hands that are in the lead more than other players. If you can, you can look at a bad beat as a good thing. It means you were playing the hand correctly and had an advantage going into the showdown. THEY had to beat YOU. If the percentages work out, you win that percentage of the time.

Unfortunately, knowing you HAD the better hand and losing anyway doesn’t do any good to your bankroll or chip count. Bad beats are just a necessary evil of Poker. Deal with it, and move on.

Yeah, I can’t do it either. Bad beats tear me up more than just about anything because I DO know all the statistics. I know the supposed “percentages” of the other player catching a card. And most of the time that percentage is very low.

Here’s some advice.

Do NOT get worked up because someone hit an outside straight or a flush against you on the river. As far as percentages go, those are “good” percentages with one card to come. Right around 17-19%. Almost one in five.

Do NOT get worked up if a guy with a pocket pair gets his trips on the flop and ends up with a full house to beat your straight or flush. All that has to happen is ANY of the other 4 cards (or 5, 4 of a kind) pairs on the board. You CAN get a bit peeved if he hits his pocket-pair trips for a boat on the river.

Do NOT think it is a “bad beat” if you are all-in against someone pre-flop and get beat. A bad beat doesn’t happen until the river card. Just because you are taking your
AA vs. his 7-2os pre-flop, don’t expect to win. Realistically, in that situation, there are only 2 cards that will help you in the entire deck. If he pairs, and catches his trips or two pair on the river, then THAT is a bad beat.

Pre-flop showdowns have WAY too many variables to try to predict what will happen. Just hope for the best, and don’t take them too seriously. Unless you are beat on the river card.

The real “Bad Beats” are the 4% draws against you on the river. These just tear me up. These bad beats have cost me a few hundred dollars, and I really don’t remember making any money getting a 4% draw to beat somebody. I’m just not in the “behind in the hand” situation very often.