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Discounted / modified outs?

    • Avatars91
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      After re-studying the concept of playing draws profitably by reading the article called "Mathematics of poker: Odds and Outs" I have some specific questions concerning the topic of discounted/modified odds.
      I understand everything perfectly until the "case studies" section, namely the examples 1, 2 and 5.

      Example 1 - "However you cannot give yourself 12 outs anymore, as the pair in the community cards doesn’t make a full house probable, but possible. You still got 8 outs left, you’d need pot odds 5:1. Your decision is made. You fold. "

      First of all, If my opponent had a fullhouse, I'd be drawing dead, and I can't seem to get why the probability alone of him getting a fullhouse in this example forces me to discount exactly 4 outs. Perhaps I should discount the ace of spades, because that would really be annoying, but otherwise I can't seem to get how one comes to the number of 4 discounted odds.

      Example 2 - "You do have a flush draw, but since it is weak, you can only count on 6-7 outs."

      How can the strength of my flushdraw affect the number of outs I have? And if it does, once again, how do we come to the 6-7 calculation? (moreover - when is it 6 and when 7?)

      Example 5 - "You bet on the flop with an OESD; your opponent raises. You have 8 outs and two over cards, which allow you to add another 2-3 outs."

      Why don't the overcards allow me to add 6 outs? I mean, if hitting one of them doesn't make my hand ahead of everyone else's, why count them at all? How do we come to 2-3 outs?

      Another small one not related to this topic, but still a little bit confusing for a new bigstacker in Example 4 - since when is it ok to call from the small blind with 89o?

      I realize there must be a reason for discounting a specific number of outs in certain situations, I just have trouble understanding the basis of some of these calculations. I mean, add or subtract one out and you have the wrong odds which leads to long term losses, so I thought it'd be useful for me to understand these situations correctly, and the article itself doesn't explain it too well. Can you help me figure this out?
  • 2 replies
    • thazar
      Joined: 14.09.2009 Posts: 6,561
      if you are in a big pot with a draw your draw should to the nut or near it.

      lets say you have 8 :spade: 9 :heart:

      and the flop is 6 :diamond: 7 :club: A :diamond:

      you have 8 outs ofr your nut straight

      if you suspect your opponent to have a flush draw you can not count the 5 :diamond: and T :diamond: as outs as they are giving your opponent a better hand.

      so you would have 6 outs

      if you place your opponent on Ax then you have the full 8 outs.
    • tokyoaces
      Joined: 01.04.2009 Posts: 1,883
      To add to thazar's comment you are never putting your opponent on a single hand. You are putting him on a range of hands that changes as you observe his actions.

      For example if you believe that your opponent is on a flush draw you would discount 2 outs for a total of 6 outs. However, if his range includes Ax hands then you wouldn't discount 2 outs. You'd discount 1 or less depending on what percentage of his range is Ax and what percentage is a flush draw.

      So if you think 50% of his range is Ax and 50% is some random flush draw then you'd hit 7 outs exactly.

      Mostly what you want to remember is that you have somewhere between 6-8 outs depending on what you think your opponents range is. The best way to get a feel for people's ranges is to plug their VP$IP and their PFR into Equilator and see what your equity is against their range.

      I dare say in the no limit world straight up "counting outs" is an outdated concept from limit poker. Pot equity is much easier concept to apply.