Which SNG Variant is the Most Profitable?

Which SNG Variant is the Most Profitable?

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Sit and Go’s are available in many varieties. The most frequently played variants of SNG’s are:

  • Heads Up
  • Shorthanded
  • Shorthanded Turbo
  • Full Ring
  • Full Ring Turbo
  • 2table Turbo SNG
  • 45er Turbo SNG
  • 180er Turbo SNG
  • Double or Nothing

With which of these variants of Sit and Go’s can you earn the most? Which is thus the best SNG poker game? We have made an attempt to estimate the potential profit per variant. Significant to this is the hourly generated by the best players in the corresponding variant. The ROI or the profit per game are not decisive. It is important that the hourly rate is as high as possible. This hourly rate is composed of the profit per game, the duration of the tournament and the number of tables that can be played simultaneously.

Earnings per SNG

We have taken into account in each case the best three players of the current year according to the Sharkscope leaderboards, playing at PokerStars with buy-ins between $ 5.01 and $ 15.00. We have assumed that a player who is on top of the global rankings in a SNG variant is only playing this version of Texas Hold’em tournaments. Based on the data from Sharkscope, we have collected the number games and the sum of the profits of the top three players for each variant. We have then used these figures to calculate the average profit per SNG. Of course, earnings per SNG is just one of three decisive factors of the hourly wage of a tournament player. We also considered the duration of a SNG tournament and the capacity to play each kind of tournament on multiple tables (multitabling capacity).

Duration of a SNG

The second factor is the duration of a Sit and Go tournament. Turbo SNG’s take significantly less time to finish per tournament than regular SNG’s with normal blind levels. Thus, if the profits per SNG both in turbo and in regular Sit’n Go’s were the same, the turbos would be considerably more profitable, because you can play more of them per hour.

Multitabling Capacity: Number of Tables

The third key factor which determines the hourly wage of a SNG player is the multitabling capability. The fewer opponents are at the table, the fewer tables can be played simultaneously. In a heads-up SNG you play only against one opponent, you must therefore perform actions much more often than in a 180-man SNG where you sit for long stretches of the tournament at a full table.
For these two points we had to make assumptions. In particular the question of how many tables a regular poker player can play simultaneously can be only estimated.
The assumptions for the duration of the each tournament variant and the capability to multitable are:

SNG Variant Time/SNG (Min) # Tables Multitabling
Heads Up 13 3
Shorthanded 33 7
Shorthanded Turbo 20 7
Full Ring 39 14
Full Ring Turbo 26 14
2table Turbo SNG 33 16
45er Turbo SNG 46 18
180er Turbo SNG 72 20
Double or Nothing 20 20

Earnings per SNG Poker Game

For our analysis we have used the Sharkscope stats of the following PokerStars SNG players holding top positions in the leaderboards for the various tournament variants:

  • Heads-Up: cowboymarco, lilachaa, R.Graholsky
  • Shorthanded: Epimp101, Truck T, TrueGrinder
  • Shorthanded Turbo: cmonk33, zaharka, premo321
  • Full Ring: riverkila, eb581, schex.on
  • Full Ring Turbo: abarone68, Envision9, sippin_criss
  • 2table Turbo SNG: jcar9271, sevenyrold, roachclips
  • 45er Turbo SNG: Dawgs678, Reb3186, SanJoShark
  • 180er Turbo SNG: ihaterivers, PortlyPig, pokerguru69
  • Double or Nothing: Shortyx, Dewster11, kikoz1

As the following graphic shows, the earnings per SNG in Heads-Up and in the 180-man SNG’s are the highest:

Taking into account that the tournament variations have different game lengths and that a very good player can play different numbers of tables simultaneously, we estimate the following hourly rate for for these SNG variations with an average buy-in of $ 10:

As you can see, with the exception of the short-handed tables these top regular players earn hourly rates in the $ 5-15 buy-in Sit and Go’s between $ 40 and $ 50. There are for sure SNG grinders with even higher hourly rates, but they are not included in this analysis because they did not play that many tournaments in this year. We estimate that in the long term an hourly wage of $ 75 at these limits is achievable for very good players. In addition, there are certainly players who play poker at higher levels and achieve an even higher hourly wage.

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