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I Shouldn’t Have Bet

by Roy Cooke |  Published: May 30, 2012


Roy CookeMaking your wagers have positive value based on the best information currently available is a poker fundamental. Yeah, poker is a game of incomplete information and you will inevitability find yourself putting in money in bad situations. But, as long as you are gathering good information and making correct plays, your bets will have an overall blended positive expectation. Of course, collecting good information and knowing the correct play can get mighty complicated.

The positive or negative expectation of your bets, often stated as earn, is the amount of money either earned or lost on an individual wager based on the current individual situation. This includes all assumptions of risk and, how the play affects all future play as well as the actual price. It’s impossible to quantify exactly, but understanding the concept should improve your poker decisions.

Some bets will have a huge return on investment value, others will have zero, most will fall somewhere in-between. In limit hold’em, the earn on those bets won and saved adds up incrementally over time in a significant way and determines whether you are a long-term winning or losing player. To obtain the most out of your betting strategies you need to effectively read situations and your opponents well, a tough mission for even the most experienced players.

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