An easy way to calculate odds.

This is another article that was requested via the BOD Facebook Group page by one of our members.

Calculating odds is basically counting the cards left in the deck that you assume will help you make the winning hand.


Below is a list of examples so you can get a better idea:

You have 4 to a flush – Flop is AcQc5d and you hold Kc7c.  Here to make the nut flush you need 1 more club, so with 4 clubs already exposed (2 on flop, and 2 in your hand) and a total of 13 clubs in the deck, you have 9 outs (13 clubs – 4 clubs exposed = 9 outs).

You have 4 to a straight – Flop is 67A and you hold 89.  Here to make the nut straight you need either a 10 or a 5.  So, knowing that there is 4 10’s in the deck and 4 5’s we add those together to get 8 outs.

*Let’s do one that is a little less straight forward…

You have Over Cards on a flop – Flop is Qc104c and you hold AKcc.  Here let’s assume that we know our Opponent has a Q9.  You opponent has top pair and you are currently behind in the hand, BUT let’s count your outs and see what we think about proceeding in the hand.  *You have the nut flush draw, which we discussed earlier is 9 outs BUT you also can hit the Jack for the nut straight (4 jacks in the deck = 4 outs).  Also, we can hit an Ace or a King and it will give us the lead in the hand, thus we have an additional 6 outs (3 aces and 3 kings).  Let’s add up all the outs we’ve decided we have, 9 + 4 + 6 = 19 outs.  That’s a lot to say the least.


Ok, now you know how to calculate your outs but how can we make that more useful?

There is an easy way to get an idea of the percent your hand has to be the winner at showdown (or your hands equity/value)…

Let’s use that last Example with AKcc vs the Q9:

We know you are behind but after doing some calculating we see that we have 21 outs to make a better hand than our opponent.  We are going to use something called the “4/2 rule”This rule basically states that on the flop (with 2 streets to go) you can multiply your outs by 4 and get a % chance that your hand will win at showdown, and on the turn (with 1 street to go) you can multiply your outs by 2 as well to get a % figure.

*So with the AKcc vs Q9 hand if we were to get it all-in on the flop we actually have a  (19 outs x 4) = 76% chance to win.

Looks like our decision here is quite easy considering the large % chance we have to win this hand. 🙂


In summary you can see how this can help you make some tougher decisions, but you should really practice doing this while you are playing and it will become more 2nd nature for you in no time!


Also, there is a Carbon Poker $1,000 Independence Day freeroll for all U.S. Players tomorrow (July 4th, 2012).

Click the banner below to sign up!



Team BOD


  1. I just want to note that this is a rough estimation and if you plug these hands into a poker program it will give you a more exact %. If you are playing on the fly and don’t have time, this is the method that could help you estimate. 🙂

Speak Your Mind

Skip to toolbar