Estimating Equity in No-Limit Hold’em Hands


Estimating Equity in No-Limit Hold’em Hands

Seidman’s explains how decision in such a spot is affected in part by how his opponent plays, and also by the “equity” he has with his hand that missed the flop. You can go back to that article to see how the combination of his opponent’s style and the relative equity of his hand affects his thinking, but I wanted to stop and linger a little over that term — equity — and talk about how it relates to poker, generally speaking.

What is “Equity”?

The word itself actually means “fairness” — or the quality of being fair or impartial. That idea comes to us sometimes when things don’t seem so fair at the poker table. You get your stack in with {A-Spades}{A-Hearts} versus an opponent’s {K-Clubs}{K-Diamonds} and a king spikes on the river — not fair!

Equity also refers to someone’s “share” of something, as in shares owned in a company. With your aces you might have claimed a “rightful share” to most of the pot while your opponent with kings has much less of a “right” to what’s in the middle. But after the community cards came and that king fell, you lost your equity and he got every chip. Read More