# icm push ranges

• Bronze
Joined: 27.01.2012
I hope this not to be a too fishy question

I have noticed that many icm push ranges are like this: (22.5%, 22+ A2s+ A9o+ K8s+ KTo+ Q8s+ QTo+ J9s+ T8s+)

A lot of suited cards like K8s are included and cards like A8o are not in the push range although when these two hole cards are compared with equilab give a result 70-30 against K8s. Why is that?
• 7 replies
• Bronze
Joined: 08.10.2009
Because the ICM is a mathematics model that allowed us to be very accurate on the positive expected value in the time (it is not exactly like that but I try to get simple) so, you need understand that when u are called with A8o u may be eventually be dominated as players are inclined to calling with Aces so, you have very high chances to be beat while K9s even if in the Equilab has less equity is in reality an hand that can be easily hit a flush or even TP when the King is free; so usually they saying you got live cards (because as explained for the A8 u r more unlikely to be dominated)

Hope that has helped (and sorry for the bad English as when Im tired or upset it go even worst )
• Bronze
Joined: 27.01.2012
Thank you kiro, i hope your tireness comes from a good grind I think i get it...but is there a rule that tells us what hands we should include to our push range? For example: the value of hand when we push is like: ATo>K9s+Q9s+J9+>A9o,A8o>K8s+Q8s+J8s...etc

hope that is not very confusing, my English are a little rusty too
• Bronze
Joined: 17.06.2010
If you put the correct range for your opponent into Equilab, the PokerStrategy Equilator, or PokerStove, then the hands in the pushing range typically should have more equity against the calling range than the hands which are not in the pushing range.

Sometimes hands which are worse against a random hand, or worse in two card poker, have more equity against a tight calling range. The value of suitedness and connectedness increase slightly when you will be called by a tight range.

There is a subtle issue that when you have high cards and particularly an ace in your hand, it is less likely that you will get called. As an extreme example, if your opponent would only call with AA, then pushing A2o would be more profitable than pushing 22 even though A2o has lower equity against AA. Having an ace in your hand blocks half of the combinations of AA. In real situations this blocking effect can make it right to push some weak aces which don't have as much equity when called as the weakest Kx hands you would push. So, you can't simply say that you should be pushing every hand which has at least 35% equity when called. In normal situations this blocking effect can be worth a couple percent.
• Bronze
Joined: 27.01.2012
So is it right to say that the tighter the opponents range the more A or K high cards we should push?
or that the tighter the opponents range, lesser the value of suited and connected cards?
• Bronze
Joined: 12.10.2010
Hi, lycoreuys, I am not a math expert, but if our opponents tend to call very tight(really depends on how many people are left, eff. stack sizes, previous history, ICM tax), I would say that suited connectors don't lose their value at all, as usually when called- they are gonna have good equity vs that tightish range. Same with any pair(even 22 as there are much less pair combos compared to high card combos) therefore we will be usually facing 2 high cards to our low pair, so we are doing fine equity wise- usually a bit over 50%.

If our opponents tend to call tight, than we can also add a lot of Ax and Kx type of hands as that will block a bit part of their calling range. However, I won't go to far shoving simple any high card value- just go for any suited Aces and a lot suited kings. Low offsuited aces have the extra amount of equity thanks to flush/wheel straight possibilities. I much rather shove A5s f.e. than A6s or A7s. A8s-A9s starts to gain 2 high card value strength as well, as we will be flipping vs some our opponents calling range (some 55-77 combos f.e.).
• Bronze
Joined: 17.06.2010
I said that suitedness and connectedness tend to be more important when your opponent has a tight range.

Against a random hand, A7o (59%) is better than T8s (52%). However, against one top 12% calling range, A7o has 34% equity while T8s has 36% equity, although that ignores the blocking effect.

A common mistake is to go too far and to value low suited connectors over suited aces. People are too worried about getting dominated by AK. Usually suited aces are significantly stronger than suited connectors sharing the kicker. Even though it's easy to imagine A7s getting called by a dominating ace, domination is not the end of the world, and A7s does much better against TT or KQs than 76s does. I think I included a more careful calculation in The Math of Hold'em.
• Bronze
Joined: 27.01.2012
thank u both for your answers, they are illuminating. I see now that some suited cards are better against some ranges but i still dont understand the reason that some push ranges are a lot in favor of suitedness ( like 22, A2s, ATo, K7s, KJo, Q8s etc) and others are more "symmetrical" ( like 44, A2s, A5o, K7s, K9o, Q9s, QTo etc) In other words, when should we avoid pushing first in unsuited aces, and when to prefer them even above low pairs? I have noticed that when our stack is far bigger or far smaller that opponents then the more symmetrical pattern appears, is that because opponents range is wider in both cases so aces play better?

ps. hope i dont tire u with silly questions plus i hopefuly plan to become silver or gold if possible this month to check these more advanced articles