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Basic Poker Glossary

Poker can be a confusing game at the best of times, so look through our poker glossary to help you understand the terminology used at the table. Talk like a pro in no time!

Click here for Texas Holdem hand rankings and definitions.

Bet: In poker, a bet is voluntarily placing money into the pot.

Bad beat: An unlucky situation where your opponent won a hand despite the very low odds.

Bankroll: The amount of money a player puts aside which is dedicated to playing poker.

Big Blind: A forced bet which is taken before cards have been dealt. Generally double the size of the small blind.

Bluff: Making a bet or a raise with a very weak hand. This is used to represent a strong hand in an attempt to make your opponent fold.

Button: The button is given to dealer or the player in the dealer position.

Call: A call is when you match another players bet to be able to continue in the hand.

Coin flip: When two players have cards which have approximately 50% chance of winning each. This effectively represents the flip of a coin.

Deuce: Another way of saying the card, ‘two’.

Drawing dead: This is a situation where no possible card could help you win the pot.

Fixed limit: When a fixed limit is set, your bets or raises are limited to a certain amount.

Flop: In Texas Holdem, ‘the flop’ is the first 3 community cards added to the board.

Fold: Leaving the hand by throwing away your cards.

Freeroll: A tournament where none of the participants pay an entry fee.

Going south: Taking chips off the table in a cash game.

Grinder: A player who plays to win small, frequent amounts in poker games. Generally plays many hours per day.

Heads-up: A poker game with 2 players.

Hole cards: The initial cards you are personally dealt in a poker game.

HORSE: A popular mixed poker game consisting of Holdem, Omaha (hi-low), Razz, Seven Card Stud & Seven card stud hi-low split-eight or better.

Muck: Folding your cards so they are not valid in the hand any more.

No limit: A game where players can bet any amount during the game.

Position: Where a player is in relation to the dealers button.

Pot: The money gathered throughout the hand to be given to the winner.

Pot limit: A game where players can bet up to the amount currently in the pot.

Pre-flop: Before any community cards are dealt.

Raise: Extra money played into the pot after a previous player has made a bet. A raise is generally at least two times the size of the raise.

River: The last community card dealt.

Slow rolling: Where a player with the best hand pretends they haven’t won, and slowly reveal their hand. Very bad poker etiquette.

Small Blind: A forced bet made before the initial cards are dealt. Generally half the size of the big blind.

The nuts: When a player has a hand that cannot possibly be beaten.

Tilt: When a player gets angry and upset, and plays poorly. Check out some tips on managing tilt.

Turn: The 4th community card.

Under the gun: The first player to make a move after the hole cards are dealt. Generally the player to the left of the big blind.