In poker, when someone goes all-in, and another player calls, they both reveal their cards, and on TV or internet poker websites, they show the percentage each player has of winning.

For example:

Player 1 has 2 Aces and goes all-in.
Player 2 has 2 Kings and calls.
Player 3 has 2 Aces but folds.

A 5, 6 and 9 come out on the flop. Then a King comes out.

Assuming there is no chance of a flush, does the computer show Player 1 having 0% chance of winning (by reading every single card that is dealt), or does it calculate it based on the known cards, and assume there's still 2 Aces in the remaining deck (because player 3's cards haven't been shown)?

Do the players in a tournament (in real life) know their win percentage, or do we just see it on TV?

  • Why did player 3 folds aces?
    – paparazzo
    Commented Aug 8, 2017 at 14:44

3 Answers 3


You have to realize that the majority of the taped TV shows DO NOT calculate those items in real-time. They are done days, even weeks, after the actual event in a voiceover studio, far removed from the actual games. So they have the time to calculate out those percentages and display them.

But to answer your question, yes, those percentages do take the discarded hands into account and it is reflected in the numbers you see on the screen. If you are familiar with programs like Flopzilla or Poker Cruncher, the TV people use something similar. With those programs you can put in hole cards, discarded cards and things like that and they can get accurate pot equity percentage numbers (which is what you see on the screen).

  • Many years ago, before I realized there was this delay, I actually remember watching a particular WPT episode and thinking, "Hey Mike Sexton, quit talking so loud, the players at the table will overhear you talking about the hole cards!" And then right after that somebody (at the table I think) made a joke about doing exactly this and it was clarified that the hole card commentary wasn't happening live with the game.
    – user1934
    Commented Mar 20, 2016 at 5:12
  • This isn’t true (at least not since 2019, 4 years after this answer got posted). PokerGFX – the software that runs during televised tournaments and is able to capture cards (by either RFID or video) – is able to show the odds in near-real time. You can choose, in the settings, whether you want the theoretical odds, or the true odds (taking mucked cards & cards held by other players into account).
    – Diti
    Commented May 17 at 12:14

In many TV Tournaments, cameras are placed to see all hole cards and calculate those into winning percentage, but not all. WSOP Main Event final table does not, for example. Further, some players will not show the cameras their cards, and usually the displayed percentages will reflect that by not displaying a number, or displaying the percentage based upon only the known hole cards.

Internet and App odds calculators that Jim Beam described calculate the information you supply, so if you reveal all hole cards, then yes, they also display total exact winning percentage. Internet play sites vary. Some will show all hole cards once action is complete, most do not. Those that do would calculate odds at 0% after the turn, those that do not would calculate at 4.55%.

Players in real life tournaments would also not know hole cards. They only know their win percentage based on the cards in front of them. Discarded hole cards aren't known and as such don't factor Odds of winning would be just under 5% after the turn. Similarly, at a WSOP final table on TV, the screen would show AA at still having a 4.55% chance of drawing one of two remaining aces and winning the hand since the hole cards are not recorded and assumed to be still in the deck.

  • Players in real life tournaments would also not know hole cards ... Discarded hole cards aren't known although sometimes they do have a good idea because players not involved will sometimes say things like, "I mucked an Ace" or something to that effect.
    – user1934
    Commented Mar 20, 2016 at 5:14

The players don't get to see the odds, and they are calculated for the audience, who know that the 2A's have gone. Trying to convince an ungullible audience that the 2A's are still really in play just doesn't seem worth it I guess.

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