Do not underestimate the value of the kicker in Texas Holdem Poker. It may mean the difference between winning or losing. You will be surprised to find out how many times a Texas Holdem hand comes down to a tie with the kicker as the tie breaker.
Suppose you are dealt Ad,Js. The flop comes and flips a 5d,5h,Ac. You now have two pair. You don’t see anybody wildly betting and suspect that no one has another five in the pocket. The Aces over Fives two pair look like they may be good. But being a smart poker player you bet cautiously because you know that a Three of a Kind or even a Full House could be out there. The pot is small and there is only one guy betting.
You call all the way to the river. You now have Ad,Js 5d,5h,Ac,2d,6c. The six of clubs on the River does not help anybody and by now it is only you and one other guy in the pot. You bet, he raises, you call. When he flips over his pocket cards you heart drops down into your shoes. He was playing along with Big Slick. His King beats your Jack kicker all to hell.
The Kicker Is King Even If It’s Not
Only the very inexperienced do not take the kicker into consideration when assesing the value of the hand. While you may live or die on the River you kicker can put a knife in your heart fast. The one and only time that you need not worry about your kicker is if you have flopped four of a kind. If you have four deuces and a trey kicker you are going to win the hand the greatest percentage of the time, by far.
That is why you do not waste time and money playing suited hands like 8d,2d The eight is essentially your kicker in the flush draw. Even if you ignore the odds that over 90% of the time you will not end up with a flush by the end of the hand. Some poker player luckier than you may have come in with an 9d,3d You loose.
Aces and Eights Is The Dead Man’s hand In More Than One Way
Forgetting the romance of The legendary Wild Bill Hickcock. Aces and Eights may well be your Dead Man’s Hand simple because it can be easily matched and beaten by a kicker.