EV, short for ‘expected value’ is the focus of every poker player. Our goal is to make as many +EV decisions as possible, and the more +EV the better. In short, a play that is +EV is expected to net us money over the long term while plays that are -EV are going to cost us money over the long term.
The basic formula is simple: EV = (W%*$W) – (L%*$L)
Put another way, multiply what a win is worth by how often you expect to win and the subtract the multiple of what a loss costs you and how often you expect to lose. And of course, W%+L% = 100%.
Here is a quick example of how you could use this calculator:
On the river the pot is $700. Your opponent shoves for $500 and you are deciding if you want to call. Let’s break it down:
- If you call and win, you make $1200 (the $700 pot + his $500 bet). So add 1200 to the first entry above
- If you call and lose, you are out $500. So add $500 to the second entry above
- You think villain is bluffing half the time and beats your hand half the time. So add 50 to the third entry above
Notice your call is expected to earn you $350 in the long run. Sounds like a great call to me!
You can use this calculator to solve the EV of calls, shoves, and more. We also have another tool called the Fold Equity Calculator which is useful when trying to figure out how often villain needs to fold for your shoves to be +EV.
If you find any inaccuracies or find any cool results, let me know in the comments below!