When the stakes required to play a game of Texas Hold’em
increase, there is not a proportional increase in the average
winnings or money flow because most players, especially at the
start of play, play tighter at higher stakes.
Here’s how that works.
Higher stakes cause players to be more cautious. Pots do not grow
proportionately as the stakes and blinds increase. Your return on
investment will therefore decrease as the minimum blind goes up.
Insiders Secrets To Texas Hold’em Poker Online by Theo Cage 60
Max Bet Pot Size
$ 2 Max 28 – 37
$ 4 Max 25 – 35
$ 6 Max 20 – 22
$ 10 Max 10 – 28
$ 20 Max 6 – 7
$ 50 Max 12
$ 60 Max 7.6
$ 100 Max 6.11
$ 200 Max 5.5
Most major online casinos release data on hands played (for a
price) on a regular basis. A recent study (June 2004) from one of
the largest online casinos, based on several million actual hands of
Poker played, revealed that the return on investment varies quite a
bit based on the maximum bet.
In the $2 games, the value of the winning pot varied from 28 to 37
times the Big Blind (BB) – the most you would have to invest to see
the flop (short of raises). The average pots were in the $60 range.
With the right cards, you could expect a return of 3000% on a
As you can see in the chart above, this ratio falls as the Blinds go
up. In the $200 game, with pots averaging $600-1200, the ratio
averages 5.5:1. Sure, greater overall winnings – but much greater
risk based on the investment you have to make to see the flop.
Also notice the volatility or variance of this ratio. On the high
stakes tables, play is very tight and often passive, so the ratio
remains very narrow – pots are predictably 5-6 times the Big Blind.
At the smaller stakes tables, there is considerably more volatility,
indicative of a lot of looser players and more aggressive playing
Insiders Secrets To Texas Hold’em Poker Online by Theo Cage 61
The $1/$2 tables are the loosest with pots ranging from 28-37 times
the Big Blind.