The ideal poker hand means different things to different people. Beginners think the ideal poker hand is one of the best starting hands such as a pair of aces while intermediate players extend their range of ideal poker hands to include suited connectors and other speculative hands. Professional poker players, however, consider many factors before determining what would be an ideal hand: his opponents, the table dynamics and how much money is on the table.
So what is it? An ideal poker hand is any hand that has the potential to maximize winnings while minimizing losses. An ideal hand does not necessarily mean a premium hand.
For instance, it is safe to say being dealt 10-2 is usually an automatic fold. But, for Doyle Brunson, 10-2 is an ideal hand; in 1976 (and again in 1977), Brunson won the World Series of Poker Championship with this hand. Although it’s not the first choice of starting hands, it goes to show that any hand can be an ideal hand if you know how to play it and your opponent.