It sounds counter-intuitive but it truly doesn’t matter who wins the money in any particular hand of poker.

The real winner is the player who made the choice that would win if repeated over and over again.

Positive Expected Value Wins Over Time

You are playing at your regular Friday night game with your friends. You get dealt AA and go all-in pre flop against pocket nines.

They hit a nine on the flop for a set and you lose all your money. Did you really lose?

In truth, your bet was +EV or had a positive expectation. You might have lost one time but if you repeat this same bet 100 times, you will win most of the money in the end.

In fact, the more times you repeat it, the closer it will come to winning the 81% that the odds say should win.

I used PokerStove to simulate 100 million hands of AA vs. 99. After just a few hundred hands, the win rate with AA stablilizes around 81% and after 100 million it is 80.861%.

The point it, you should always try to get your money in when you have the best odds. You are bound to lose sometimes and that can be frustrating. But keep making those +EV choices and you will win in the long run.

It’s Not Just The Cards, Every Choice Has Expected Value

Poker is not simply just about the odds of the cards.

If I notice that the player to my left folds his blind 90% of the time, then it is +EV for me to raise to steal his blind with any two cards. As long as he doesn’t adjust, the more I make this choice the more I profit. The 1 in 10 times he calls or raises my steal, I can fold and still profit because I have stolen his blinds the other 9 times.

However, if I try to steal the blinds with any two cards from a player who defends his blind 90% of the time, I am making a -EV choice and should probably tighten up so the hand I’m playing post flop are stronger on average like they should be.

Every choice you make has an expected value. Learning what choices are +EV and which are -EV is an important skill for every poker player.

Understand The Concept Not The Calculation

If you hate math or aren’t good at it, you should really focus on understanding the concept of positive and negetive expectation.

You don’t need to be able to make the calculations exactly to be good at poker. You just have to be able to apply the concept at the critical times and have a good feel for the approximate odds.

Why Do Casinos Always Make Money?

Have you ever noticed that casino’s make a lot of money?

They make enough to pay for all of the lights, slot machines, free drinks and comps, prizes and events, etc.

If it depended on luck, how could casinos stay in business?

The truth is some people get lucky and others don’t, but in the end, the slot machines are programmed to payout something like 95% of the money they take in.

When you play a slot machine you have a negetive expectation and the casino has a positve expectation. You might be lucky and win in a few hundred or even thousand of plays, but eventually you will lose and the casino will win.

Play Poker Like You Are A Casino

When you are playing poker, your only main goal is always to make choices with positive expectation and avoid choices with negetive expectation.

When you make mostly +EV choices, you are the house or casino, guaranteed to make a profit if you continue to make those choices.

When you make -EV choices, you are the sucker pumping money into the slot machines. You are going to get lucky sometimes, and unlucky other times, but in the long run you will lose money because you keep making choices with negetive expectation. So, for preparing yourself you should always check onto some Internet Casino.


Every game required skill and knowledge to know about it. If you don’t know the game and don’t have a practice on it, you won’t be able to play it perfectly. But in case of poker, you need to know the skills, besides this luck also plays a role here. Addition will be the experience you have in poker and gambling industry.


Claire Bennett is a self-taught poker player and is looking for different ways through which she can share her experience and poker tips with other enthusiasts.