Top 10 Starting Hands For Texas Holdem
Like any other poker game, everyone must start with learning the basics of Texas Holdem. After learning the rules of how the game is played, the next thing a player needs to learn is starting hand values. Many players make a mistake of playing any two cards when they first start playing Holdem and end up being severely shocked when they walk away from the table broke frequently.
Below, let’s review the top ten starting hands in Texas Holdem.
1. Pocket Aces
The crème de la crème of starting hands in Texas Holdem is pocket aces. When you get this starting hand pre-flop, you will be playing this hand incredibly strong.
2. Pocket Kings
The second strongest hand in Holdem and only beaten by Aces preflop. Again, when you get this hand, you will play it strong.
3. Pocket Queens
The ladies will usually have you in great shape pre-flop. Only two hands are better before the flop and you will play this hand very strong.
4. Pocket Jacks
Hooks are considered one of the trickier hands to play in Holdem, but it is still in the top five as only three hands have it dominated pre-flop. Playing this hand strongly pre-flop is recommended.
5. Ace-King Suited
A-K suited is only heavily behind pre-flop to pocket aces and kings. Otherwise, you have two over cards to any other pair and you have nut flush and straight capabilities.
6. Pocket Tens
This is the lowest of the big pairs. Obviously this hand dominates all smaller pairs and is favored slightly against A-K, A-Q, and A-J.
7. Ace-Queen Suited
This hand is only heavily dominated by three hands. Otherwise, it is over cards to any pair under queens and gives nut flush possibilities.
8. Ace-Jack Suited
Again, this hand has nut flush chances as well as straight possibilities. The hand is dominated by any over pair and a stronger ace.
9. Ace-King Offsuit
This hand has potential to outdraw any pair other than aces pre-flop. It has nut straight capabilities. The main strength is that when flopping a pair of aces or kings, you have the
best kicker possible.
10. Pocket Nines
There is a lot of disagreement about which should be in the #10 spot. When it boils down to it, nines are a favorite over smaller pairs and even a slight favorite against A-K, A-K, and A-J.
The above list is a guideline. As you will learn, poker is not a solid static set of rules. Poker is situational. What might work for your home game with your buddies may not work at a game in the casino.
I should point out that after the top five hands, a lot of players will start to disagree over which hands should go into the top ten. Some will argue hands such as K-Q suited or even A-Q offsuit should go into the top ten. Also, these are just the top ten hands. There are other playable hands, but these are the best.