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Table Selection in Poker

Dollar Sign PokerGame selection is one of the easiest ways to increase your hourly win rate at the poker tables. You don't have to be the best poker player in the world to make a profit; you only have to be better than the people at your table. With that in mind, we'd like to cover some of the things you can look at when picking a table to play at.

Table Statistics

You can use the lobby at every poker site to view the statistics of every open cash game table currently running. There are a variety of statistics available at every site but the three most important ones include:

1. Percent of Players Seeing the Flop

This statistic tells you how fishy the table is as a whole. Players who play too many hands give up a lot of value that you can easily extract by playing a tight, aggressive game. Look for the tables that have the highest percentage of players seeing the flop.

2. Average Pot Size

Every site calculates this statistic a little differently but the basic idea is that you can see how big the average pot has been over the course of X number of recent hands. Big average pot sizes mean there's a lot of money moving around the table that you can get your hands on. If there's been a big pot at the table recently, it can skew the average pot size upwards so don't base your entire table analysis on this one statistic.

3. Hands Per Hour

This statistic doesn't necessarily mean the table is any softer than any other table but it does tell you how many hands you can expect to see per hour. If you're a winning poker player, more hands per hour equals more profit per hour. If you have two tables to choose from and they both have similar statistics, use the hands per hour number as the tie-breaker.

Player Notes

It's easier to manipulate players that you have notes on so look for tables that have players you've already made notes on. The lobby at most poker sites will inform you if you already have notes on players at the table before you even sit at the table. Just look for the list of players sitting at the table and there will usually be some indication (like an icon of a notepad) that lets you know you've taken notes on the player in the past.


The longer you play at a poker site, the more familiar you'll become with the screen names of regulars and multi-tablers. Although some people claim multi-tablers are easy to beat, the truth is the fish are the easiest.

Look for the multi-tablers and avoid their tables if you can. Multi-tablers usually play tight, smart poker and there's no point in trying to extract money from them when you can find more clueless opponents. Multi-tablers tend to play tighter than average which makes them somewhat predictable but still, it's harder to extract money from a rock than it is a fish.

Seat Selection

When you find a good table, do your best to get the best seat at the table. If you can get the maniacs and fish to your right and the tightwads to your left, you'll have a great seat. Having the unpredictable opponents on your left makes it easier to avoid them and take advantage of them because you'll have position on them most of the time.

Having the tightwads on your left makes your life easier because you don't have to worry about them making crazy plays behind you. Tight players are much more predictable and therefore it's much better for you to have them on your left than it is to have someone crazy on your left.

Poker Concepts Worth Knowing