Texas Holdem Poker Terms

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Putting all of the chips you have at the table into the pot, creating a side pot for the remaining players.


Adjective to describe a player who raises and re-raises and rarely calls.


An action that isn't against the rules, but still incorporates unfair tactics.


The pot. The total amount being wagered upon.


Making a hand other than the one intended. Example: Having J/10 of Clubs with a flop of A of Clubs, 5 of Clubs. 6 of Spades. The turn and river are K & Q of Hearts. You made a straight instead of the intended (and more likely) flush.


A re-raise from a player who originally called.

Bad Beat

When a good hand is beat by a longshot draw.


The amount of money you have.

Bet Odds

The odds you get as a result of evaluating the number of callers to a raise.

Big Blind

The largest blind posted prior to the dealing of cards. This is usually the player sitting two seats to the left of the dealer.

Big Slick

The name of an Ace and King in the pocket. Suited or otherwise.


A useless card.


A mandatory bet placed before the cards are dealt to force money into the pot. You usually have to post a blind when you join a game.


Betting even though you don't have a good hand.


A full house.

Board, The

1. The communal cards dealt face up in Hold Em that all players can use.
2. The surface these cards are dealt onto. Typically a tabletop.

Bottom Dealing

A form of live cheating where the bottom card is usually preset and dealt instead of the top card.

Burn Card

In Hold 'Em, the cards before the flop, turn, and river that are discarded to prevent reading of marked cards.


A symbol to designate which player is sitting in the dealer's position.


The necessary amount of money needed to join a game.


Matching a bet amount.

Calling Station

A passive and loose player who does not raise much, but calls more than he or she should.

Cap or Capping

The idea that there can only be a raise, a re-raise, another re-raise, and one final re-raise. That's four bets total per player, per round, at most.

Cards Speak

Your hand is the most favorable possible combination of cards, no matter how you call it.

Cash Out

Taking your money and going home.


The act of calling, then re-raising a raise.

Cold Call

To call more than one bet at once as result of a re-raise.


A form of cheating where multiple parties help each other in deciding the best course of action.

Community Cards

Communal cards dealt face up in Hold 'Em that all players can use.

Computer Hand

Name of Queen and Seven in the pocket.


The man or woman who handles the cards, gives out the pots, and monitors the game.

Dealer's Position

Being the last to act in a betting round. On the button.

Dominated Hands

Hands that are okay to play, but tend to lose against similar non-straight/flush hands. Example: A2 is dominated because against other hands with an Ace, it loses or draws without improvement.

Dominating Hands

Primo hands that are not only good, solid hands, but have lots of room for improvement.


1. A drawing hand.
2. A game result where multiple players split the pot as result of having equal hands.
3. To take a card from a deck of cards.


Playing a hand to improve.

Drawing Dead

A drawing hand that will lose even if it improves.

Drawing Hand

A hand that needs improvement to win. Usually to a straight or flush.


1. n. the first three community cards dealt face up on the table.
2. v. used to describe what your hand was after the flop. "I flopped the nuts!"


Having a poker hand of five cards whose suits all match.


To give up your hand and forfeit the pot to the remaining players.


A poker hand consisting of all four cards of the same type.

Free Card

The card you get as result of semi-bluffing from late or last position so that all the players check to you.

Full House

A poker hand consisting of three-of-a-kind and a pair. Worded as the three-of-a-kind being "full" of the pair. Example: Three Aces and Two Tens is verbally declared as a "full house, Aces full of Tens".

Gutshot Draw

A straight draw where only one card will complete the hand.


1. The complete playing of all the cards given out in one deal.
2. The cards used by a player.


When only two players are involved with a hand.


One of the four playing card suits. Formerly representing the clergy.

High Limit

A game where the amounts wagered are high.

House, The

The establishment where a game is being held. It may be a casino in Las Vegas, a kitchen table, or an online casino's server in Antigua.


What kind of player others currently perceive you as.

Implied Odds

The odds you are getting after the assumed result of betting for the remainder of the hand.


A prize fund awarded to a player who meets a set of predetermined requirements. For example, some casinos will give a jackpot to someone who gets four-of-a-kind or higher and loses.


In a tie hand between one pair, two pair, or three-of-a-kind, the remaining card(s) that make up the hand. The player with the highest card(s) wins.

Kill Game

A game where certain predetermined requirements creates higher stakes and/or create a third blind.

Late Position

Being one of the last to act in a betting round. Usually an advantage.


Calling a blind pre-flop without raising.

Live Hand

An active hand. One that has not folded.

Live Game

A game where you are physically near the other players.

Long Shot

Making a hand despite having few outs and/or poor odds.


Adjective to describe a player who plays lots of hands and gets involved with a lot of pots.

Low Limit

A game where the amounts wagered are small.

Main Pot

The first established pot before a player goes all-in and creates a side pot.


The name of a Queen and Jack in the pocket. Suited or otherwise.


A player who has the ability to illegally manipulate cards for favorable results.

Middle Position

Being in between early and late position.


1. v. To discard your hand, especially after an opponent reveals a better hand.
2. n. The discard pile.

No Limit

Considered one of the last true forms of poker, where the amount you can bet is limited by the number of chips in front of you.

Nuts, The

The best possible hand.


1. The proportion by which one bet differs from that of another.
2. The ratio between the probability for and against something happening.

On the Button

Being the last player to act in a betting round. Dealer's Position.


The number of cards left in the deck that will improve your hand.


A pocket pair higher than any of the cards on the board.


A poker hand comprised of two cards of the same type and three others.


Adjective to describe a player who frequently calls and rarely bets.

Pocket Cards

The two cards dealt to you at the beginning of a Hold 'Em hand that no one else is entitled to see.


In a turn-based game like Hold 'Em, your rank in the order of turns. This is typically categorized into early, middle, and late position.

Pot, The

The amount of money and sum of the bets being wagered on in a game.

Pot Odds

The odds you get when analyzing the current size of the pot vs. your next call.


The space of time after you've been dealt your pocket cards and before the flop is dealt.


1. What you need to call your friend to pick you up after you lose all your money playing Hold'em before reading up on strategy.
2. What your opponent will need to call his or her friend after playing you after you read up on strategy.


Putting in the first bet in a round.


Money taken by the house to compensate for expenses.

Rank of Suits

An uncommon ranking system to determine who wins in a game with no draws. The cards in your final five-card hand are evaluated. The winner is decided by the highest pocket card involved with that hand. The player with the better rank wins. In order the ranks are Spades, Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs. If the players still have the same hand, the highest pocket card is the winner, if it is still a tie then the highest ranked pocket card wins.


The illegal action of taking money off the table and putting it somewhere else.


Putting in another bet on top of a previous raise or raises.


Analysis of a player based on how they play, mannerisms, and tells.

Ring game

A normal game, as opposed to a tournament game or a non-money game with your uncles.


The fifth and last community card dealt face up in a Hold 'Em game.


A passive, tight player.

Royal Flush

The highest ranking hand. Having a straight 10 to Ace of all the same suit.

Run, Going on a

The act of playing with more money than is typical or reasonable for you to play.


A winning streak


Holding back and calling despite the fact that you have a very good hand, usually to disguise strength, provoke bluffs, and to check-raise.


Betting with a mediocre or drawing hand


Having a pocket pair that matches one of the cards on the board.

Short Buying

Purchasing chips after your initial purchase. Usually the minimum for a short buy-in is less than the initial buy-in.


An adjective used to describe a game with few players.


The final phase after all betting has ended and players reveal their cards.

Side Pot

Bets made into a new pot after a player has gone all-in.


A system used by colluding players to let each other know what they hold.

Slow Playing

Playing deceptively with a strong hand by checking and calling with the intention of raising once the pot is larger.

Small Blind

The smaller or the two blinds posted prior to the dealing of cards. This is usually by the player sitting directly to the left of the dealer.

Soft Seat

A seat or game which is favorable because of the lack of skill at the table.


One of the four playing card suits. Formerly representing nobility.

Splashing the Pot

An illegal move where chips are placed in a haphazard way. Such as being tossed directly into the pot before being counted.

Spread Limit

A betting structure where you can bet any amount within a certain range.


A poker player's "gamblin' money".

Steal Raise

A raise by someone in late position in an attempt to reduce the number of players and/or steal the pot.


Re-raising to make a player(s) call two bets instead of one.


Posting an extra blind when one sits to the left of the big blind.


A poker hand with five sequential cards. In Hold'Em, Aces can be high or low.

Straight Flush

A poker hand comprised of five sequential cards all of the same suit.

String Bets

Saying "I'll call your bet....and I'll re-raise!", instead of just "Raise" or "Re-raise". Generally not allowed because of ethics involving angle shooting.

String Calls

An illegal call like saying "I've got a pair of Jacks.", then after your opponents have revealed their hands or just simply reacted to that, saying "Oh, and I've also got a pair of sevens, too" or a similar situation.


A characteristic of a playing card. The card being either of Clubs, Diamonds, Hearts, or Spades.


Usually used in reference to your pocket cards when they are of the same suit.

Table, The

1. The surface on which poker is played.
2. A term used in reference to the players at a table. "A tight table."

Table Stakes

The rule that you can only play a hand with the money you have at the table.


An action that gives clues about the cards someone is holding.


A poker hand consisting of three cards of the same type.


Adjective to describe a player who selects hands very carefully and folds easily.

Tilt, On

Behavior as a result of losing, usually negative.

Top Pair

Having a pair with the highest card on the board and one in the pocket.

Top Two Pair

Having both your pocket cards match the highest two cards on the board.


The fourth community card dealt face up in a Hold 'Em game.


A pocket pair of lower value than the lowest card on the board.


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