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StrategyPoker Basics

Stats (1) - Basics


In this article
  • How stats can help you with your game
  • Which problems you need to be aware of
  • Different levels of stats and their structure

In every hand evaluation, in every consideration and on every street, stats play a very important role. That's why you should know what stats say and what they don't say about a player in a given hand.

What are stats?

Singular: The stat (abbreviation of "the statistic")

The term stats refers to all statistical figures that you collect about your opponents in a poker database with the help of poker software. Such software may include the's Elephant, Hold'em Manager or Pokertracker.

As statistical mean values, the scope of information they provide about a specific situation is somewhat limited, but they still often determine your reaction in a specific situation.

This article kicks off an article series about stats, which will deal with exactly these aspects and their correlations. You will learn which stats build on each other and how the interpretation of stats helps you with your decisions in the game.

In this series, you will learn about the basics of the pyramid principle and how the different stats relate to each other. Later we will focus specifically on the interpretation and correlations of individual stats as well as the influence of sample size. On top of that you will see what role stats play in your meta game.

Why do you use stats?

You use stats in order to limit your opponent's range in a given situation and to figure out how the equity of your hand or of your range would hold up against it. Stats also help you get an idea of what player types you are facing and how they tend to play.

What stats can't do

Stats are statistical mean values and you need to keep this in mind. Stats therefore tell you how an opponent, on average, reacts to a certain situation, e.g. how often he raises or calls preflop.

Stats predict tendencies. However, there are other factors that influence every decision your opponent makes. Looking at stats out of their context can lead to wrong decisions if you don't see or don't consider other pieces of information.

Stats may therefore not serve as the only basis for your decisions in the game. You have to embed their interpretation in the overall context of the situation. You should by no means blindly rely on their numerical value.

What exactly stats tell you and what they don't tell you

When you look at a stat, you combine two things: You take the stat's numerical value and based on this derive a range that your opponent might have.

In general, stats initially don't tell you anything about the strength of Villain's range, even though this may sound contradictory.

If, for example, your opponent has a 3-bet stat of 5%, this only tells you that this player has 3-bet 5% of the hands he has played. Nothing else.

Such a stat on its own does not initially allow any other conclusions about your opponent's range, but only represents the frequency of a specific reaction/situation. This is a very important aspect, which you need to internalise.

Stats specifically indicate the frequency of an action or a reaction. Stats do not directly indicate the strength of a range.


That's not the entire article...

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Comments (24)

#1 wlcKeD, 06 Oct 10 10:27

Which software is best and supports playing SNG's?

#2 jekyll001, 07 Oct 10 11:48

One question regarding Fold/call to 3bet. The article mentions correlation

I OR Villain – II 3B anyone – II Fold/Call Villain

What happens in case
I OR ANYONE – II 3B anyone – II Fold/Call Villain

Does this count to his fold to 3bet or only to VPIP



#3 kidzoltan, 17 Jan 11 22:46

very useful, thanks!

#4 Angelface21, 01 Jul 11 12:01

Very nice, although I think in sng's Level 4 isn't really happening a lot inclusive level 3 except floating stats and cbet turn.

#5 Komis3, 23 Aug 11 16:42


#6 genia2q, 12 Jul 13 15:40

Good to know thanks.

#7 mamorys9, 16 Oct 13 15:27

Good to know thanks.

#8 mamorys9, 16 Oct 13 15:27

Good to know thanks.

#9 biggood, 07 Sep 14 18:57

very useful, thanks!

#10 Honda70, 04 Dec 14 07:05

learn learn

#11 toske1, 13 Mar 15 18:36


#12 mirth, 28 Mar 15 17:21

i agree. stats basically tell you what sort of player you are against, but anyone can "switch gears" during play.

#13 LyToLV, 13 Jun 15 14:53

its needed only on SNG becose in MTT playersh changing ich level and then i ned moe wraith aobut players not playing poker. if u gethering all that info u need to knowe if hi hear are singl hawe a chaild or even a dog becose lots of thing can be in his life whats chainges his mynd in minits..

#14 vinkojudi, 31 Jul 15 11:37


#15 Leonventer112, 17 Oct 15 03:34

how is this suppose to work

#16 gohomeman2690, 31 Oct 15 15:34


#17 bubamarasr, 25 Jan 16 02:59

Read it. Thank you!

#18 babysim90, 07 Feb 16 16:59


#19 Joonazz, 08 Feb 16 12:21

pretty good article

#20 ptpokermyth, 26 Feb 16 16:37

very good

#21 sedinbsng, 01 Apr 16 19:29


#22 CroZoZo, 26 Apr 16 13:21


#23 CroZoZo, 26 Apr 16 13:25


#24 MrBat, 24 Jan 18 13:18