Reading poker hands

In terms of poker, hand reading means identifying the strength of the hand an opponent is most likely to be holding.

All poker players do this to some form or another, even when using an online casino such as the Best NJ Online Casino, Resorts Casinos, which also offers other games such as blackjack and slots, even if they are unaware of it. In many ways, hand reading is the main objective of poker, putting it in its simplest terms.

With strong technical knowledge and logical deduction, it is possible to build the range of opponents and use that information to make more profitable plays.

Using ranges to read poker hands

A poker range refers to the number of possible hands a player might have at a given moment.

Ranges can exist pre- and post-flop andcan vary considerably given that fewer ranges will apply to tight players and more starting hands will be possible in the range of looser players.

It is possible to begin to build the range of an opponent pre-flop and redefine that range on a continual basis as they take action during the hand.

Poker range forms

There are several methods for discussing poker ranges. These methods are essentially interchangeable, and the aim is to visualize them all side by side.

The Poker Hand Matrix

The Poker Hand Matrix uses the 13 x 13 method and lists all possible starting hands – 169 in total – this being the universal way in which poker players visualize ranges.

Every pocket pair is displayed by the matrix along the diagonal, with every suited combo being above it and every unsuited combo underneath.

Any poker software that uses the matrix comes with different color-coding systems. Any selected hands are colored in such a fashion that they will stand out from unselected hands.

Percentage form

A range’s percentage form reveals the percentage of every possible starting hand that has currently been selected. No hands would equal 0%, while every hand would equal 100%.

When suits are taken into consideration, the 169 possible starting hands are turned into 1326 unique combos.There would be six combos to work out the percentage form of aces, meaning the percentage form for AA would equal .45%.

Percentage form is handy when syncing the pre-flop of frequencies of opponents with a real range of hands.

Range combos

Combos count how players can make particular hands. New players often believe there is just one ace-king combo, but there are 16, with four suited and 12 unsuited.

It is important to remember that hole cards can have an impact on combos.

Calculating ranges

The range assigned is a bi-product of the nature of your opponent, the action they take, where they take that action, and how they might craft that specific range.

The best method of calculating ranges is to work out how many hands an opponent is likely to be playing in a situation, which can be done by paying attention to their frequencies and their tightness or looseness in specific spots.