PokerStars Statistics

by ~ June 25th, 2009. Filed under: Basics of poker, Instructional posts.


Sometimes we forget that not everyone has similar degrees of experience or of interest or money for computer software as we do. I was reminded of this recently when trying to help someone do a bit of a review of their game. The hand sample was not big, just a few thousand hands. It’s probably enough to start looking for holes, but the statistics he had to work with looked like the default PokerStars statistics or from some software that looked at simliar information.

As a multi-table cash game player playing anywhere from 2 – 12 tables at a time I still check the statistics tab on the PokerStars table during a session. I use HoldEmManager and the HUD, but the HUD shows table by table stats for my play (so I can see how I appear to the other players) and not my overall stats for the session. I could open up the HoldEmManager session stats tab but it’s easier just to click on the PokerStars table and check my stats.

The ones that I look at are:

  • Total hands; ’cause I’m curious
  • Saw flop, total; ’cause this will be close to my VP$IP. There will be a few instances where people limp into my big blind and I see a flop for free, so this stat is usually slightly higher than my VP$IP but it’ll be close. This tells me how tight/loose I’m playing over all the tables that I have open. This usually confirms for me that I’ve been card dead, or when I’m tending to try to run over tables, or when I’ve been limping in behind more than usual
  • Pots won at showdown; this I usually also have a feel for before I look, but I like to look at it for confirmation that I’m running good or running bad. Because it only looks at showdown, the stats here actually take a while to converge but it’s an unexpectedly good predictor for me of how my session is going.
  • Pots won without showdown; no particular number that I’m looking for, except the number should be quite a bit higher than the total number of showdown hands or else I’m really not being aggressive enough.

The results that I’m looking for, other than total hands, are:

  • Saw flop, total: around 16%. This is a tight/aggressive style for 9 player tables. As mentioned, this will be slightly higher than my VP$IP given the levels that I play at. If you are intentionally playing LAG or are playing 6 handed tables, then this should be higher, but most beginners tend to play too many hands and get themselves into trouble.
  • Pots won at showdown: 50%. In the long run, if I’m winning much more than this then I’m folding some winning hands on the river. If it’s lower, then I’m calling or bluffing inappropriately too much on the river. in the short run of course, it can be almost anything.
  • Pots won without showdown: generally it’s somewhere around 2.5 – 3.5 times as much as the total hands that went to showdown, or around 5-7 times the winning hands at showdown. Most hands that I play I raise preflop. Most hands that I raise preflop I continuation bet the flop. The times that people fold when I do these things normally happens at a rate of 3 times the number of hands that I go to showdown with. Again, this is for 9 player tables.

So if you don’t have HoldEmManager or PokerTracker or some other statistical program, these stats are some things for you to consider. The other stats I don’t look at during play, but one other stat that might be interesting for people who don’t own a HUD is how often you see the flop from the small blind. I mention this because people generally complete from the small blind far, far too often. The small blind is an awful position to play from so unless

  1. you get multiple limpers,
  2. you have a hand that can flop big (small pocket pair, connectors, suited Ace),
  3. you’re sure the big blind won’t raise to try to take the dead money that’s currently in the pot, and
  4. you’re pretty sure if you raise the limpers that they are the type of player that are likely to call,

then just fold the small blind. And if it’s folded to you in the small blind you should almost exclusively raise or fold. Unless you’re Daniel Negreanu and are an expert at reading players or Gus Hansen and an expert at playing out of position it’s better to stay out of trouble and fold if you can’t bring yourself to raise when it’s folded to you in the small blind.

Keep in mind that I look at these stats during 400-1000 hand sessions, and even then I’m considering them as very short term, “curiosity” stats rather than anything that has any analytical value. If you play single tables and don’t have a poker statistics program you should look at these stats over a longer time frame. Write them down on a spreadsheet after each session before you close PokerStars (because the stats disappear when you log out) and track the results over bigger hands sample to get a more accurate understanding.

If you go to the PokerStars lobby and click on “Requests”, “Statistics”, you can have the statistics for a maximum of your last 2,000 hands. PokerStars will email these stats to you. If you want a quick review or are just starting your statistical tracking this will work fine, but you won’t know specifically which hands are included in the stats that you are being sent, meaning it will be easy to double count some hands or miss others if you just rely on this method.

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1 Response to PokerStars Statistics

  1. Agueztvierra

    hmm good question! the 2 most easy sites to win on are PKR poker and pcaiffic poker the bonus on pcaiffic poker and PKR are hard to get and not very good but the people are so bad it dont matter. Both fulltilt and Pokerstars only give you good bonus’s if you play loads every day of every month which can be unfair.But saying that Pokerstars is the best place in the world for tournaments..they do take for ever though but they have huge prizepools!!! in the recent WCOOP the main event had a 10.2 million prizepool!!! lol!!hopes this makes sense adam

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