jesse may   Poker Glossary  
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  all in--Situation when all of your chips are in the current pot.
backer--Someone who puts up all the money for someone else to play. The player gets a piece of the winnings but suffers none of the losses.
bad beat--A hand where the over riding favorite hand loses the pot because of a very unlucky card. The pre-last card favorite hand gets a bad beat put on him by an inferior hand.
bet--to pay an amount of money into the pot that remaining players must match if they want to continue playing the hand.
big dime--Ten thousand dollars. A dime is a thousand dollars.
big score--An enormous win all at one time. Enough to get you out of debt and have a big bankroll to boot.
black bird--A one hundred dollar chip.
blank--A card that doesn't very likely affect or change the present situation of the hand. An example would be the two of clubs when the board is three high diamonds.
blind--Money players put up before seeing their cards as an ante. This responsibility rotates every hand, and in a Hold'em game two players put up a blind every hand, the small blind and the big blind.
board--Cards that are face up on the table.
box--Safety deposit box. Some casinos let players have personal boxes inside of the casino so they don't have to carry money outside.
box--Space where the dealer sits.
breaks--verb referring to the ending of a poker game, when the remaining players quit and find a new table or go home.
broke--Out of money.
busted--Out of chips on the table. Out of money.
buy-in--Amount of money a player puts on the table to play with. The minimum buy-in is the minimum amount of money that a player must put on the table to start in a game.
call-- Pay the money that someone else has bet, either to get another card or to see a showdown.
check--To pass the action to the next player without betting, an option only available when no one else has bet during that round.
check raise--When a player first checks in a round, and then raises after another player has bet and the action comes back around to him.
cold deck--A hand that there is no escaping from losing money in because of the cruel way the cards come out.
deep pockets--Lots of money to back up what's on the table. Access to sums of money.
dime--A thousand dollars.
draw--When a player still needs a card to make his hand complete. One more heart for a flush or a six for a straight or something like that.
drawing dead--When a player has no cards left in the deck with which to win the hand.
flop--In Hold'em or Omaha, the three community cards that are put on the table all at once after the first round of betting.
flush--Five card poker hand where all cards are of the same suit, no special order.
fold--When you turn your cards in and concede rights to winning the pot. You don't have to pay any more during the hand, and come back into the action the next hand, without penalty.
go partners--When two people share in putting up the money for one or both of them to play. They share equally in the win or loss, according to how much they've each put up. If two people are going partners while they are both playing in the same game, then all that matters is their net win or net loss.
go south--Take money off the table while you are still playing in a game. This is illegal and unfair to other players because it doesn't allow them a shot to win their money back if you are ahead.
hand--Unit of time in a poker game. During each hand, one pot is built and awarded. Players can drop out of the hand, or fold, whenever they want and stop paying money into the pot. They are automatically back in the game at the beginning of the next hand. A hand normally takes from thirty seconds to three minutes.
head up--One-on-one poker.
hit and run--Winning money quick and leaving the game. Quitting as soon as you are ahead.
hit with the deck--When all the cards that you are dealt end up winning every hand that you are in. Cards just come right to you.
Hold'em--A poker game. Also called Texas Hold'em. Every player receives two cards of his own. There's a round of betting. Players may fold any time and stop paying. Three community cards come up in the center, the flop. There's another round of betting. A fourth community card is turned face up in the center, the turn card. There's another round of betting. The last community card is turned face up in the center, the river card. There's another round of betting and then it's showdown time. From their two hole cards plus the five community cards in the center of the table, remaining players make the best five card poker hand. The best hand wins the whole pot.
hole cards--The cards that a player has in his hand face down, known only to himself.
hooked--Losing in a game. People usually don't like to quit playing when they are hooked.
in the middle--When two players are going partners in the same game and they are raising each other in order to trap a third or more persons into putting more money in the pot.
live one--Bad player. Someone bound to lose their chips.
muck--Part of the table where the discards are kept. Once cards have touched the muck they are dead and ineligible to win the pot.
no brainer--Cards and hands that require no thinking at all, just bet and win.
nuts--The best possible cards that you can have at a given time in a hand.
Omaha--A poker game. Every player gets four cards of his own. The board is dealt like Hold'em, the twist being that at the end every player must use exactly two cards from their hand and three cards from the board to make their five card poker hand.
outs--A number of cards. A player has to be dealt one of these cards from the deck in order to win. If you have a two-outer, than you need to be dealt one of two cards in the entire deck to make a winning hand.
piece--Percentage of financial liability. See take a piece.
pit--That part of the casino where all the house games are located. Blackjack, craps, roulette, slots. All the games where you play directly against the house and their advantage is built into the game.
pocket--Face-down cards, hole cards.
pot--Money in the center of the table that builds up during each hand, and then starts anew for the next one.
pot limit--Type of poker where a player can bet or raise the size of the pot any time it is his turn to act. This compares to limit poker, where a player can only bet a fixed limit at one time.
pumped--Holding a lot of money because you've been on a good winning streak lately.
rack--Plastic chip holders in the poker room, a full rack holds one hundred chips in five stacks of twenty.
rags--Low cards, cards with value less than ten.
rail--Place to stand when you're watching a poker game. Place you stand when you have no money.
railbird--Person watching a poker game from behind the table or the rail.
raise--Increase the bet during a betting round. In a 10-20 game, if someone bets $20, you can then call the $20 and raise $20 to a total of $40.
red bird--Five dollar chip.
ring game--A full poker game, either eight or ten players.
river--The last card in a poker hand and the betting round that follows it.
running (bad, good)--How your luck is going, how events have been treating you.
save--Insurance in a poker hand, money that it is agreed the winner shall pay to the loser.
shooting angles--Getting the advantage. Doing things that might not be a part of the play of the game itself in order to gain an advantage in the game.
short-handed--A poker game with not that many people playing. Three, four, or five.
short stacked--Not having too many chips on the table in front of you. Low in money or chips.
slowroll--Not turning your cards over in the proper order or at a reasonable time in order to make someone else think that they've won the pot and thereby increase their agony over losing.
south--In your pocket, off the table.
stack--Amount of chips that you have in front of you on the table.
street (fifth, sixth, seventh)--Betting rounds of a poker hand. Fifth street refers to that time and betting round when all players have exactly five cards. Sixth street is when players receive and bet on their sixth card, and so on like that.
stuck--Losing in a poker game, behind money.
Stud--A poker game, also called Seven Card Stud. In Seven Card Stud, each player gets dealt two cards down and one card up. Then there's a betting round, third street. Players are each dealt another card face up and there is another betting round, fourth street. Another card is dealt face up and another betting round. A sixth card face up and a fourth betting round, sixth street. Players remaining in the hand get a final card dealt face down. The final betting round, seventh street or the river. Showdown time. Players use five out of their seven cards to make the best poker hand. Best hand wins the whole pot.
swap action--When players trade similar percentages of their play in the same game. If they swap 25%, then they either give up 25% of their win or get paid 25% of their loss by their partner, depending on how they do.
take a piece--To put up a percentage of money of someone's buy-in, big or small, in exchange for the same percentage of their win or loss. No service is given to the player.
Texas Hold'em--see Hold'em.
tight--Conservative. Playing very few hands, only the strong hands.
tilt--Loss of control.
turn--The fourth community card that is put face up in Hold'em and Omaha. The betting round that follows is sixth street.
10-20--Betting structure of limit poker. During the first two betting rounds all bets and raises are exactly ten dollars, and during the last two or three betting rounds all bets and raises are exactly twenty dollars.
100-200--Betting structure of limit poker. During the first two betting rounds all bets and raises are exactly one hundred dollars, and during the last two or three betting rounds all bets and raises are exactly two hundred dollars.

Rank of Five Card Poker Hands

High Card --e.g. Ad, Qs,Td, 8c, 5h
One Pair --e.g. Jd, Js, 4c, 5c, 5h
Two Pair --e.g. Jd, Js, Th, Td, 4c
Three of a Kind --e.g. Jd, Js, Jh, Tc, 4c
Straight --e.g. 9d, Tc, Jh, Qc, Kd
Flush --e.g. 4d, 8d, Td, Jd, Kd
Full House --e.g. Jd, Js, Jc, Th, Td
Four of a Kind --e.g. Jd, Js, Jc, Jh, Tc
Straight Flush --e.g. 9d, Td, Jd, Qd, Kd

2-9, T-A : card number, ten, jack, queen, king, ace
c, d, h, s : clubs, diamonds, hearts, spades

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Copyright © 1998 Jesse May.