Poker Coverage:

Contracts and Poker: Solver Charts and Apps

by Scott J. Burnham |  Published: Mar 13, 2019


A faithful reader called my attention to an episode of Card Player’s Poker Stories podcast in which Dominik Nitsche complained about tournament players looking at solver apps on their phones before acting on a hand. As most players are aware, a solver app, or shove chart, indicates the game theory optimal (GTO) hands to shove with when your stack is low. Nitsche wondered what the rules have to say about this. It is a good question, and one that illustrates the problem of the rules trying to keep up with technology. Let’s begin with the use of charts. This exact situation came up during the 2016 World Series of Poker main event when a player took a paper shove chart out of his pocket to assist him in making a decision. Ultimately, Tournament Director Jack Effel prohibited the use of the chart, stating that during the play of the hand ...

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