The Importance of High Cards

The figure infra shows the probability that at least one overcard—a card on the board higher than either card in your starting hand—will appear after the flop. The probabilities range from 100% (if the highest card in the starting hand is a 2) to 0% (for an Ace in the starting hand). The figure demonstrates that holding an 8 as a high card is not much different than holding a 2. Since straights and flushes are rare, pairing pocket cards with cards in the flop is much more likely than any other event. To win over the long-run, you must play high cards, because that decreases the chance that an opponent will pair with an overcard.