The importance of expected value is going to be discussed today. If you want to be a successful poker player, you need to understand the expected value and how to apply it. What is poker EV or the expected value?
What Is Poker EV?
What is the value in poker? You might think that the answer to this question is straightforward. EV is a calculation that takes into account both luck and strategy to measure the profitability of your decisions.
It’s important to remember that simply observing the outcome of a hand can be misleading due to variance, so it’s crucial to use EV when evaluating your play.
Why Is EV Useful in Poker?
Making the most profitable decisions at the poker table is essential for success. EV calculations allow you to identify and exploit profitable opportunities, no matter what your opponents may be doing. Remember that your overall profit in a session (and overtime) comes from making more winning decisions than losing ones.
So always fight for every chip, especially against weaker players!
How to Calculate Expected Value
When making free throw bets, you need to calculate the expected value (EV) to determine if a wager is worth taking. If you want to do this, simply add the outcomes together. You can get an estimate of how much money you can win or lose.
Keep in mind that this calculation is based on averages, so your results may vary.
Now let’s suppose that Golden State Warriors player Steph Curry offers you a bet where he will shoot two free throws and pay $5 if he makes both shots, but he’ll take $10 from you if he misses one. In this case, the EV would be -$4.01 since you can expect to lose an average of $4.01 per bet made. However, if Curry offered 20:1 odds and paid out $100 instead of just $5 when he makes both shots, then the EV would be +$5.39 since you can expect to earn an average profit of $5.39 on every such bet made
Why Expected Value is So Important
Expected value is key in poker because the game will have its ups and downs. In the short term, whether you play well or poorly, you will win and lose. However, good players make money over time by making only +EV wagers, while bad players tend to gamble recklessly.
Make sure to become a good player yourself- look for bets that have positive expectation!
If You Make +EV Decisions, You Win Long Term
If you make +EV decisions, you will win in the long run. Your goal should be to make money over the long term because poker is a game of constant decision-making. As long as your decisions are profitable over the long term, you will come out on top.
Remember that it’s important to always look at your play objectively and ask yourself whether it shows a positive expectation in the long run – regardless of the outcome of any particular hand. In this case, calling an all-in with top set on that board would show a positive expectation – so don’t let a bad beat shake your confidence in what you’re doing!
How To Use Expected Value in Poker
When calculating the expected value of a poker bet, it’s important to consider both the probability of winning and losing. The classic mathematical formula for poker EV is:
EV = [Probability of winning * What you win] + [Probability of losing * What you lose]
For example, if you have the nuts on the river and the pot size is $200, your possible outcomes are as follows:
- $200 and you get called 20% – In this case, your EV would be $40 (20% x $200).
- $80 and you get called 50% – In this case, your EV would be $40 (50% x $80).
- $20 and you get called 90% – In this case, your EV would be $18 (90% x $20).
Note that these calculations are for analysis away from the table in order to help build up intuition when a complex calculation is not practical. Keep in mind that if there’s no money at risk because we hold the nuts, our potential losses don’t come into play.
However, even in this simplified scenario it can be seen that betting big can sometimes be better than betting small – even if we only get called a small percentage of the time.
Always Look for the +EV Move!
As poker players, we should always be looking for the best move regardless of EV. Making the best possible move will give us the highest expectations in the long run, but there will inevitably be times when we lose. Bad poker games are rewarded, and this is the best part.
However, that doesn’t mean their moves are good. We need to stop thinking about short-term results and just focus on making the best decision. Good results will follow if this is done consistently.