How to Choose at Profitable Poker Game

We all know that poker is a predatory game.  The poker table, much like the animal kingdom, is a place where the strong feed on the weak.  You either learn to hold your own, or you lose everything.  Most of us spend countless hours studying the game and analyzing our play for potential leaks.  We want to make sure that we’re one of the strong ones.  But there’s an easier way.  You don’t necessarily have to make yourself stronger.  You can still make plenty of money if you just take some time to look for weaker players.

Players spend a lot of time trying to find the fishy poker sites, but proper table selection is the real secret to making a killing in online poker rooms and almost all online poker sites give you everything you need to find tables full of poor players.  All you have to do is learn how to read the statistics they give you.

The Percentage Of Players Who See The Flop

This percentage tells you how loose the table is.  For example, a full ring game with 15% of the players going to the flop on average is an incredibly tight game.  It’s going to be hard to make money there.  But a full ring game with 55% of the players going to the flop is a virtual ATM machine.  When you have a lot of players seeing the flop, chances are that most of them are doing so because they don’t understand proper hand selection.  And if they don’t understand one of poker’s most basic concepts, you can rest assured that they know squat about more advanced ones like pot odds.  Here’s a basic guide for this useful statistic:

Tight: <25%

Semi-Loose: Between 25% and 35%

Loose: Between 35% and 45%

A dream come true: >45%


Stick to that guideline and you’ll find the loosest games available.

The Average Pot Size

In truth, a high percentage of players seeing the flop means little without a high average pot size.  If fact, you’ll occasionally see a table with 50%+ players seeing the flop and an average pot size that’s ridiculously low.  That means that the players are seeing lots of flops, but folding if they fail to connect with anything.  Those kinds of games are tough to beat because it’s hard to put your opponent on a hand.

However, when you find a game with a high percentage of players seeing the flop and a high average pot size, you have a recipe for poker riches.  These games are usually filled with players known as “calling stations” who will call with almost anything both before and after the flop.  These players are a poker shark’s bread and butter – which brings me to my next point.

Tag The Fish

You didn’t think your buddy list was for your friends did you?  Come on!  You’re a poker player – a predatory animal.  You don’t have any friends.  All you have are people you love to play poker with because they’re so god-awfully bad at it.  Your buddy list should be a collection of your site’s worst poker players.  Trust me, there’s no shortage of them.  You could have a list several hundred strong just by playing consistently for a year.  Check your buddy list when you log on to see who’s online, then see if any of them are in a room that meets your criteria for percentage of players seeing the flop and average pot size.  If they are, you’ve hit the trifecta!

Know When To Get Out

The bad part about choosing good tables is that you’re sitting at a table that will attract other sharks.  Pay attention to the table’s dynamics as old players leave and new players take their place.  Once it becomes obvious that you’re not the only shark in the pool, it’s time to get out and hunt down a different table.


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