Hellmuth submits that these 10 hands should be the only pocket cards played by the beginner in low limit Texas Hold 'em. This makes the game much simpler before the flop, however, as you can probably guess, the tricks of how to play these 10 hands after the flop can get complicated. As a general rule though, bet these top 10 hands. Top Starting Hands in Texas Hold’em. Listed below are the top 10 starting hands that you can explore in the game of poker. This is a classic hand and considered by enthusiasts as the strongest starting hand that you can make in the game. You can be dealt with an Ace of Hearts and Spade once every 221 hands, and if it happens, you. Texas Holdem – Top 10% Starting Hands. In Texas Hold’em, there are 169 unique combinations of preflop starting hands you can be dealt. This number is arrived at by grouping holdings into pairs, suited cards and offsuit cards, and considering that preflop specific suits (e.g. Hearts vs diamonds) don’t yet have value. (If taking into account suits, the number of hole card.


The following table ranks the top hands in a 10-player game. This table assumes that all players stay in until the end.

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Explanation of column headings:
  • Cards: Initial two-card hand.
  • Probability of win: Probability that this hand will win, or tie for the win.
  • Average win: This is how much the player will win on average, including his own bets, if the player does win. This is less than 10 because sometimes the player will have to split the pot.
  • Expected value: This is how many units the player can expected to win (positive) or lose (negative) with this hand. For example if the player had a pair of aces and contibuted $1 to the pot then the player could expect to have a net win of $2.11.
  • Probability: Probability of getting this hand to begin with.
  • Additive probability: Probability of getting this hand or any stronger hand to begin with.

Initial Hold'em Hands in Rank Order for 10-Player Game

Top 10 hold

Top 10 Hold'em Hands

CardsProbability of WinAverage WinExpected ValueProbabilityAdditive Probability
Pair of A's31.36%9.912.10710.45%0.45%
Pair of K's26.43%9.871.60790.45%0.9%
Pair of Q's22.66%9.811.22240.45%1.36%
A/K suited21.73%9.521.06880.3%1.66%
Pair of J's19.84%9.740.93180.45%2.11%
A/Q suited20.44%9.410.92390.3%2.41%
K/Q suited19.8%9.410.86390.3%2.71%
A/J suited19.51%9.310.81590.3%3.02%
K/J suited18.94%9.310.76360.3%3.32%
A/T suited18.87%9.20.73530.3%3.62%
Q/J suited18.55%9.280.72170.3%3.92%
A/K unsuited18.29%9.410.72090.9%4.83%
Pair of T's17.76%9.650.71450.45%5.28%
K/T suited18.34%9.210.6890.3%5.58%
Q/T suited18.04%9.190.65770.3%5.88%
J/T suited18.07%9.160.65520.3%6.18%
Pair of 9's16.05%9.690.55590.45%6.64%
A/Q unsuited16.78%9.260.55390.9%7.54%
A/9 suited16.87%9.120.53770.3%7.84%
K/Q unsuited16.3%9.260.50980.9%8.75%
K/9 suited16.22%9.160.48540.3%9.05%
T/9 suited16.33%9.090.4850.3%9.35%
A/8 suited16.34%9.030.47560.3%9.65%
J/9 suited15.96%9.120.45610.3%9.95%
Q/9 suited15.89%9.140.45270.3%10.26%
Pair of 8's14.96%9.670.44710.45%10.71%
A/5 suited16.23%8.90.44470.3%11.01%
A/J unsuited15.7%9.10.42910.9%11.92%
A/7 suited15.93%8.960.42720.3%12.22%
A/4 suited15.88%8.940.42050.3%12.52%
A/3 suited15.51%90.39570.3%12.82%
K/J unsuited15.3%9.110.39440.9%13.73%
A/6 suited15.62%8.910.39160.3%14.03%
Q/J unsuited15.07%9.080.36870.9%14.93%
Pair of 7's14.14%9.650.36470.45%15.38%
A/2 suited15.02%9.040.35790.3%15.69%
K/8 suited15.03%9.030.35680.3%15.99%
T/8 suited15.05%90.35560.3%16.29%
9/8 suited14.69%9.110.33880.3%16.59%
A/T unsuited14.93%8.940.33530.9%17.5%
J/8 suited14.66%9.030.32310.3%17.8%
Q/8 suited14.61%9.040.32040.3%18.1%
K/7 suited14.64%8.960.3120.3%18.4%
K/T unsuited14.6%8.960.30860.9%19.31%
J/T unsuited14.64%8.920.30660.9%20.21%
Pair of 6's13.51%9.640.30170.45%20.66%
Q/T unsuited14.45%8.940.29180.9%21.57%
K/6 suited14.35%8.910.27870.3%21.87%
8/7 suited14.03%9.080.27360.3%22.17%
K/5 suited14.09%8.870.24940.3%22.47%
9/7 suited13.81%9.040.24880.3%22.78%
Pair of 5's12.88%9.610.23790.45%23.23%
T/7 suited13.82%8.910.23150.3%23.53%
K/4 suited13.78%8.920.22940.3%23.83%
7/6 suited13.54%9.060.22620.3%24.13%
Pair of 4's12.56%9.680.21550.45%24.59%
K/3 suited13.49%8.990.2120.3%24.89%
Q/7 suited13.57%8.910.20910.3%25.19%
J/7 suited13.49%8.920.20260.3%25.49%
Pair of 3's12.31%9.750.20020.45%25.94%
K/2 suited13.21%9.050.19550.3%26.24%
Pair of 2's12.15%9.820.19330.45%26.7%
8/6 suited13.2%9.010.19010.3%27%
6/5 suited13.14%9.040.18870.3%27.3%
Q/6 suited13.28%8.850.17540.3%27.6%
5/4 suited12.88%9.040.1650.3%27.9%
Q/5 suited13.05%8.820.15090.3%28.21%
7/5 suited12.73%8.990.14490.3%28.51%
9/6 suited12.74%8.950.14090.3%28.81%
T/9 unsuited12.87%8.80.13270.9%29.71%
Q/4 suited12.73%8.880.13010.3%30.02%
T/6 suited12.72%8.790.11890.3%30.32%
A/9 unsuited12.74%8.770.1180.9%31.22%
Q/3 suited12.44%8.950.11310.3%31.52%
6/4 suited12.22%9.060.10770.3%31.83%
J/6 suited12.56%8.780.10260.3%32.13%
Q/2 suited12.17%9.020.09780.3%32.43%
J/9 unsuited12.36%8.810.08910.9%33.33%
8/5 suited12.16%8.930.08560.3%33.63%
5/3 suited11.97%9.060.08490.3%33.94%
K/9 unsuited12.27%8.830.08360.9%34.84%
J/5 suited12.32%8.740.07630.3%35.14%
Q/9 unsuited12.11%8.820.06790.9%36.05%
J/4 suited12.01%8.80.0570.3%36.35%
A/8 unsuited12.16%8.630.04940.9%37.25%
7/4 suited11.59%8.990.04210.3%37.56%
J/3 suited11.74%8.880.0420.3%37.86%
4/3 suited11.36%9.130.03690.3%38.16%
9/5 suited11.7%8.850.03510.3%38.46%
J/2 suited11.47%8.950.02660.3%38.76%
T/5 suited11.84%8.650.02430.3%39.06%
A/5 unsuited12%8.450.01330.9%39.97%
6/3 suited11.09%9.070.00560.3%40.27%
T/4 suited11.53%8.710.00420.3%40.57%
A/7 unsuited11.71%8.51-0.00330.9%41.48%
T/8 unsuited11.48%8.63-0.00870.9%42.38%
T/3 suited11.24%8.78-0.01250.3%42.68%
A/4 unsuited11.63%8.49-0.01260.9%43.59%
9/8 unsuited11.2%8.79-0.01580.9%44.49%
8/4 suited11.04%8.9-0.01680.3%44.8%
5/2 suited10.83%9.07-0.01760.3%45.1%
T/2 suited10.98%8.86-0.02740.3%45.4%
A/3 unsuited11.22%8.55-0.04020.9%46.3%
4/2 suited10.47%9.16-0.0410.3%46.61%
A/6 unsuited11.35%8.43-0.0440.9%47.51%
9/4 suited10.73%8.8-0.05670.3%47.81%
J/8 unsuited10.94%8.63-0.05670.9%48.72%
K/8 unsuited10.97%8.6-0.05690.9%49.62%
7/3 suited10.46%8.98-0.06030.3%49.92%
9/3 suited10.42%8.87-0.07560.3%50.23%
8/7 unsuited10.57%8.72-0.07770.9%51.13%
Q/8 unsuited10.7%8.62-0.07790.9%52.04%
A/2 unsuited10.7%8.6-0.07970.9%52.94%
3/2 suited9.9%9.24-0.08480.3%53.24%
9/2 suited10.15%8.95-0.09110.3%53.54%
6/2 suited9.96%9.06-0.09760.3%53.85%
K/7 unsuited10.54%8.48-0.10620.9%54.75%
8/3 suited10.07%8.86-0.10760.3%55.05%
9/7 unsuited10.24%8.65-0.11470.9%55.96%
7/6 unsuited10.1%8.68-0.12340.9%56.86%
8/2 suited9.78%8.94-0.12540.3%57.16%
T/7 unsuited10.17%8.43-0.14240.9%58.07%
K/6 unsuited10.19%8.38-0.14560.9%58.97%
7/2 suited9.53%8.93-0.14840.3%59.28%
6/5 unsuited9.73%8.65-0.15770.9%60.18%
8/6 unsuited9.67%8.59-0.16930.9%61.09%
K/5 unsuited9.93%8.31-0.17490.9%61.99%
5/4 unsuited9.49%8.64-0.17950.9%62.9%
J/7 unsuited9.66%8.4-0.18790.9%63.8%
K/4 unsuited9.58%8.37-0.19840.9%64.71%
Q/7 unsuited9.57%8.36-0.19970.9%65.61%
7/5 unsuited9.26%8.55-0.20860.9%66.52%
K/3 unsuited9.26%8.45-0.2170.9%67.42%
9/6 unsuited9.09%8.46-0.23080.9%68.33%
K/2 unsuited8.97%8.54-0.23430.9%69.23%
Q/6 unsuited9.25%8.26-0.2360.9%70.14%
6/4 unsuited8.75%8.63-0.24460.9%71.04%
Q/5 unsuited9%8.19-0.26310.9%71.95%
T/6 unsuited8.98%8.19-0.26450.9%72.85%
5/3 unsuited8.52%8.62-0.26510.9%73.76%
8/5 unsuited8.6%8.4-0.27840.9%74.66%
Q/4 unsuited8.67%8.26-0.28440.9%75.57%
J/6 unsuited8.65%8.13-0.29730.9%76.47%
Q/3 unsuited8.35%8.35-0.30280.9%77.38%
4/3 unsuited7.9%8.69-0.31330.9%78.28%
7/4 unsuited8.05%8.47-0.31770.9%79.19%
Q/2 unsuited8.06%8.45-0.31910.9%80.09%
J/5 unsuited8.41%8.04-0.32410.9%81%
9/5 unsuited7.99%8.21-0.34350.9%81.9%
J/4 unsuited8.07%8.11-0.34530.9%82.81%
6/3 unsuited7.56%8.57-0.3520.9%83.71%
J/3 unsuited7.75%8.2-0.36380.9%84.62%
T/5 unsuited8.06%7.89-0.36410.9%85.52%
5/2 unsuited7.34%8.56-0.37140.9%86.43%
J/2 unsuited7.48%8.31-0.37910.9%87.33%
T/4 unsuited7.71%7.95-0.38770.9%88.24%
8/4 unsuited7.38%8.27-0.38980.9%89.14%
4/2 unsuited6.96%8.68-0.39630.9%90.05%
T/3 unsuited7.4%8.04-0.40540.9%90.95%
T/2 unsuited7.11%8.14-0.42110.9%91.86%
7/3 unsuited6.85%8.36-0.42730.9%92.76%
9/4 unsuited6.96%8.03-0.44080.9%93.67%
3/2 unsuited6.35%8.77-0.44270.9%94.57%
6/2 unsuited6.38%8.46-0.46010.9%95.48%
9/3 unsuited6.63%8.12-0.46150.9%96.38%
9/2 unsuited6.35%8.23-0.47720.9%97.29%
8/3 unsuited6.36%8.09-0.48520.9%98.19%
8/2 unsuited6.06%8.19-0.50390.9%99.1%
7/2 unsuited5.86%8.17-0.52110.9%100%



Top 10 Hold'em Starting Hands

This table is the result of a random simulation of 20,583,763,200 games and assumes all players stay in until the end of the hand.

The following table shows my power rating for each initial 2-card hand in a 10-player game. The numbers are on a 0 to 40 scale. Basically, you should only play hands that are dark green, blue, or purple. Of course you should be more be more liberal in late position and picky in early position. If forced I would say you should need 10 points in late position and 19 points in early position to call the big blind. If your table is loose, as if often the case online, you can play a bit looser yourself.

Use the top table if you have a pair, the middle table if your cards are suited, and the bottom table if your cards are unsuited. Except for a pair,look up your high card along the left and your low card along the top.

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