AA vs AK – odds and probability for the poker hands AA vs AK

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Mark | Poker Articles, Poker Rules

AA vs AK

One of the most misplayed hands in no limit Texas Hold’em is ace-king, or Big Slick as it is often affectionately referred to. Although it is ranked as the fifth strongest hand in Hold’em, when suited, it is not as strong in all-in confrontations as its ranking would suggest, especially in when it runs into aces in an AA vs AK confrontation. This article should give you some background information on odds and probability for the poker hands AA vs AK.

Odds and probability of AA vs AK happening

At a ten handed table you will be dealt suited ace-king once in every 332 hands, ace-king offsuit once in every 111 hands and ace-king of any sort once every 83 hands or so. Ace-king is a great hand to move all in with when short-stacked in a tournament or even to call a short-stacks all in move, as it is only ever really in trouble if the hand it is against is aces or kings, and even against the latter it will improve to win around 32% of the time thanks to the ace. In fact ace-king will improve to top pair or better 32.4% of the time.

Odds of winning when you have AA vs AK

However, the times you are in an AA vs KK situation you are completely crushed. Should you be unlucky enough to get Big Slick all in against aces then you will be a massive 91.84% underdog, although that improves slightly to 87.6% if the ace-king is suited and does not share suites with the other player’s aces. The reason ace-king fairs so badly in AA vs AK battles is the fact it cannot pair its ace to win, as that would give the other player a set, not can it flop a solitary king as the other player’s aces would still be leading. That means for ace-king to beat aces it has to catch at least two kings or improve to an unlikely flush or straight.

Although those over at betfairpoker.com will acknowledge that you will be in serious trouble if you do find yourself with AA vs AK if you hold the latter, you should not be too worried about finding yourself in the predicament too often. When holding ace-king your opponent will hold aces or kings around once in every 23 hands at a ten handed table and will hold precisely aces once every 46 hand or so.

Whether using the Betfair Bonus or not, the odds are absolutely tiny if there are only two of you dealt cards, the odds are around 407 to one against it happening, so feel free to shove your ace-king without fear of running into the dreaded AA vs KK.

Famous AA vs AK confrontations

One player who did run his ace-king down the throat of aces was 2004 World Series of Poker Main Event Champion Joe Hachem, and he lived to tell the tail. During Day 1 of the 2007 World Series of Poker, and with blinds of 300/600, the action folded around to Jimmy Cleveborg who looked down at AdAc and made it 1,600 to play. Two players folded and Hachem, from the big blind, re-raised to 4,600 holding AhKd, not knowing he was now an 93% under dog in the hand. Cleveborg moved all-in and Hachem called off the rest of his relatively short-stack. Despite only holding 6.5% equity, Hachem caught a miracle Td-Qh-Jh flop, giving him a Broadway straight, itself a 77 to one shot!

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