Pot Odds

  • Pot Odds are the odds given to a player by the size of a pot relative to the size of a bet or raise facing that player.
    Pot Odds are used to calculate how often a player must win a hand in order to justify a call.
    Pot Odds are calculated by taking the size of a bet or raise, and then dividing by the size of the pot before the call, plus the size of the call.

    For example, if there are 3 BB in a pot, and an opponent bets 1 BB, the pot odds offered to the player facing that bet are
    1/(4+1) = 1/5 or 20%.

    At the end of a hand (as the last action before showdown), these odds can be interpreted as the percentage of the time the player
    facing the bet needs to win in order to break even.

    In the above example, if the player wins 20% of the time, their expected value is (.20)x(4) - (.8)x(1) = 0 , so this is a play with zero expected value.
    (explanation, the first multiplication comes from the .2 chance of winning, multiplied by the +4 BB won, the second comes from the .8 chance of losing, and the one blind lost).

    Example: I was getting the correct pot odds, so I decided to call.

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