Sunday, October 8, 2017

What Are The Best Poker HUD Stats?

What Are The Best Poker HUD Stats?
People ask me all the time what are good poker HUD stats to have. Or what are the best HUD stats for a winning poker player.

The problem with this question though is that there are many different ways to win in poker. In fact in my 2nd book, Modern Small Stakes, I actually tried to answer this question in a section entitled "Ideal Stats."

The amount of controversy, and even pure hate in some cases, that this caused especially on some online poker forums was unbelievable.

Even though all of the "ideal stats" that I listed in the book were based off of the raw data from millions and millions of hands in my Pokertracker database, people still bitterly disagreed with the numbers in some cases.

However, from many, many years of playing online poker and analyzing the data I still think there are some generalizations that can be made about what the best HUD stats to have are.

So I am going to break it down for you in this article and list good HUD stats for both 6max and full ring micro stakes cash games. They will apply to both zoom and regular tables.

And I will just state for the record that these numbers are just my opinion!

If you try and copy these HUD stats there is absolutely zero guarantee that you will become a consistent winning poker player. And it is totally possible to be a big winner with widely different stats as well.

Once again, there are many different play styles that can be successful in poker. With that disclaimer out of the way, let's get started!


Good HUD Stats for 6max Poker


VPIP - 20

PFR - 17

AF - 3

3Bet% - 7

Fold to 3Bet - 70

ATS - 35

Fold to Steal - 75

Flop CBet - 70

Turn CBet - 50

River CBet - 50

Fold to Flop CBet - 60

Fold to Turn CBet - 40

Fold to River CBet - 40


Good HUD Stats for Full Ring Poker


VPIP - 15

PFR - 12

AF - 3

3Bet% - 6

Fold to 3Bet - 70

ATS - 35

Fold to Steal - 75

Flop CBet - 70

Turn CBet - 50

River CBet - 50

Fold to Flop CBet - 60

Fold to Turn CBet - 40

Fold to River CBet - 40


What Games are These HUD Stats Good For?


The HUD stats above are best used in NL2, NL5 and NL10 cash games. These are the games online where many of your opponents will be very basic and even complete beginners in some cases.

The best strategy for success in these games is something that many people now call "exploitative" poker. This has also been the strategy that I have been advocating on this blog and in my books and videos for over 10 years now.

What playing exploitative poker really means is that you are finding and taking advantage of the major weaknesses of your opponents. For instance, they might fold too much before the flop, call too much after the flop or go to showdown too often.

Since most of your opponents at the lower stakes will have massive glaring weaknesses like this in their game, an exploitative approach is absolutely the best way to beat them for the highest winrate.

Other approaches like GTO (game theory optimal) poker for instance, which has become popular in recent years, are far less effective against players like this. Because this style of play fails to attack the actual weaknesses of micro stakes poker players.

So that is why some of the HUD stats that I advocate above will be either too weak or too strong for some people. In fact some people will complain that these stats are too "unbalanced."

But that is the entire point!

You don't crush players who have large fundamental leaks in their game by trying to balance all of your ranges in every situation and become totally unexploitable (i.e. what GTO poker tries to do).

That stuff is great to know once you get to mid stakes and it is definitely necessary for high stakes games. However, I am talking about how to beat the beginner level regs and recreational players that you will find at the micros here, NOT solid well balanced professionals.

So yes, some of your HUD stats absolutely should be unbalanced at the micros if maximizing your winnings is the goal.


Simply Play Style for the Micros


The other thing about these HUD stats is that they will have you playing a simple TAG (tight and aggressive) style of play that keeps you out of too many difficult situations at the lower stakes.

And the reason why this is a good thing is because most of the people reading this article (and my books and watching my videos) are relative beginners as well. The best thing that newer poker players can do is keep everything as simple as possible. Avoiding fancy play is also the key to success at the micros in general.

So for instance, some of these stats like Fold to 3Bet or Fold to Steal might be a little bit too high in higher stakes games against stronger thinking opponents. In fact a really solid player might even be able to find ways to exploit these a little bit.

However once again, these HUD stats are meant for playing against the robotic non-thinking nits and loose/passive recreational players that you will often encounter at the lower stakes games like NL2, NL5 and NL10.

A simple tight/aggressive and positionally aware style of poker is the best way for somebody who is new to the game or currently struggling at these stakes to start having success.


Develop Your Own Style of Play


The last thing that I want to note about these HUD stats is that it is important for you to develop your own style of play. In other words you should never try to copy a bunch of statistics and try to mold your game around them.

Should you try to play roughly about 20% of your hands in 6max and 15% in full ring? Yes, but these are just general guidelines. In fact as I have talked about before I believe there is a higher win-rate ceiling at the micros with a LAG style of play, which would require you to play more hands than this.

Furthermore, some people might do better with a lower 3Bet or a higher 3Bet than suggested above. They might also do better by folding their blinds more often or less often than suggested above.

The bottom line is that you need to develop your own unique style of play and these HUD stats should only be taken as rough rules of thumb to go by. In my experience most winning players at the lower limits roughly fall somewhere within the confines of these stats.

But the key to your success as you move up the stakes will be adjusting your play to each individual opponent and creating the perfect strategy against them in particular. You don't do this by trying to copy a bunch of charts or numbers.


Final Thoughts


So there you have it. The above are what I consider to be good HUD stats in both 6max and full ring at the micro stakes. Some will agree and some will bitterly accuse me of blasphemy.

The real important point here is that there is no such thing as "the best HUD stats." It depends what game you are playing in, who your opponents are and what style of play you feel most comfortable playing as well.

You can and should also switch up your game on a regular basis especially when you start moving up and encountering stronger thinking opponents.

For example some days when I am playing higher stakes I will show up as a 13/10/3 full ring nit sitting around waiting for the nuts. And some days I will play a 25/22/4 raging 6max LAGtard bluffing up a storm.

I do this purposely so that my opponents can never get a firm grasp or read on what type of player I am. The minute they try and take a note on me, it is completely wrong the next time they play against me.

Anyways, I do hope that this article was useful for some of you out there trying to figure out what the right HUD stats to have are. By the way you can download my entire custom HUD for free and use it for yourself at the tables right here.

Lastly, if you want to know the complete strategy that I have used to crush the micros for some of the highest winrates in online poker history, grab a copy of my free ebook.

Thanks for reading guys!

Let me know in the comments what HUD stats you use. Do you agree or disagree with the stats posted in this article?

What Are The Best Poker HUD Stats?

10 comments:

  1. Hey Nathan, I recently started my trial of PT4 and downloaded your lite HUD. However, I've noticed that some players have a total AF of more than 5, or in some cases, it just displays the infinity symbol. What does it mean if a player has a total AF stat of 8, for example? Another thing I've noticed, is that some players have a higher PFR than VPIP - how is this possible?
    Thanks

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    1. Hey Zach,

      This is because you probably have a small sample size on them. Make sure that you have at least 100 hands on someone before using the AF stat. In my experience it is always 5 or less with a decent sample size like this. PFR higher than VPIP, never seen that, could be some weird sample size thing again.

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    2. Okay, so the AF should be out of 5 then, right? I've read about PFR being higher than VPIP, and while it's very atypical, it isn't a bug. Anyway, thanks Nathan.

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    3. I rarely see anyone's AF higher than 5 over a legit sample. So ya, you could just score on a 5 and below system.

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    4. Just wanted to share that I have regularly a PFR higher than VPIP.
      The reason is, that when I play Spin & Go, the sample is small and there will be a lot of all-in situations. In some cases this leads to the possibility to call an all in, while it will be impossible to raise due to stack size.
      In the stats, the VPIP will go down when you don't call, but the PFR will be unaffected (it only changes if you have the possibility to raise). In certain situations, this can lead to the VPIP dropping below the PFR and as result show you a PFR higher than VPIP.
      Hope that clarifies it.

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    5. Ah ok thanks for clearing that up!

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  2. Hi Nathan, maybe a stupid question but how can i see the HUD stats from myself? cheers

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    Replies
    1. There is an option within Pokertracker to turn on your HUD stats as well. I always have it disabled personally because I can just see my own stats any time in the program itself.

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    2. And where can you see those HUD stats in the program itself exactly?

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    3. Under the "view stats" and "statistics" tabs. You can also use the "my reports" tab for much more detailed information on you and your opponents.

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