Poker talk

You might have the moves but can you talk the talk? Take a look at the EuroPoker.com Poker Talk guide and learn what to say and when to say it. Before long, you'll be chatting like a Pro!

Poker dictionary

Action
A move by a player. Hold'em involves seven basic moves:

Bet Put money in the pot
Call To match / equal another player's bet
Fold Forfeit cards and with it your chance of winning the pot
Check Passing on making an action (if no bet is in play)
Raise To increase another player's bet
Re-Raise To increase another player's raise
All-in Betting all the chips in front of you at once!

Bad beat
A hand that is beaten by someone getting very lucky and drawing out that hand.

Bank roll
The sum of your total account stack.

Betting Rounds
Every poker hand played is divided into four betting rounds which start on the player left of the button in the first position making an action. These are as follows;

Pre-flop The betting round before the flop.
Flop round The flop has been dealt and betting starts again.
Turn round Comes after the fourth community card has been dealt.
River round This comes after the fifth and final betting round. This is followed by the showdown.


Blind
The blinds, small forced bets, are placed before any cards are dealt. One player posts a big blind and the other a small blind. The small blind is half the amount of the big. The amount of the blinds depends on the limit being played.

Bluff factor
Betting and raising with a hand that you are fairly certain is not the best hand. The idea with this is to bluff or scare your opponent into folding.

Board
The five community cards that all the players can see and use to build their hand.

Flop The first three community cards to be dealt.
Turn The fourth community card
River The fifth and final community card


Bust
You're bust when you lose your entire table stack or bank roll.

Button
Virtual dealer marker moved from player to player in a clockwise direction after each hand. The player on the button always acts last. Consequently the player left of the button, in the first position, always acts first.

Cap
There can only be a maximum of three raises in any given betting round. The last raise is called the cap.

Cracked
When the fantastic starting hand of two aces is beaten – the aces are cracked.

Community cards
The five cards on the board shared by all players.

Connectors
Starting hands that are connected through their value like J-10, A-K and 7-8.

Dominated
A hand that is subdued by another hand. For example AK would dominate AJ if an ace falls on the board. The dominated hand has a lower kicker (J) and little chance of winning.

Draw hand
A hand that needs a certain community card to come into play in order to win – most commonly with a straight or a flush. The starting hand of J10 of spades on a 8s 9s and Ah flop would be a very good drawing hand. You have 7 or a Q for the straight and any spade for the flush. If Qs or 7s hit you even have a straight flush! But if none of these cards hit, the hand is worthless.

Drawing dead
A hand that cannot win even though the entire board is not yet on the table.

Edge
In the long run, luck evens out and skill alone defines the difference required to win. Edge is the slight advantage one player has over another through better skill, a larger stack or a better position.

Grinder
A player who consistently plays for hours with the intent of slowly and carefully building a large bank roll.

Fish
A nickname for bad players who lose regularly – usually given this name by superior, winning players.

Flat call
Making a call in a situation where a raise would have been feasible.

Freeroll
A huge tournament that is free to enter.

Heads-up
A one-on-one poker game.

Hole cards
Your starting hand. These are sometimes referred to as pocket cards.

Gut shot
To draw to a very unlikely draw like an inside straight.

Inside straight
On a 5, 9, Q flop with 6, 7 hole cards, an 8 would make the inside straight!

Kicker
When two players hold equal hands such as the same pair, the highest unpaired card is called the kicker and it decides the winner. For more info, see Dominated.

Limit
The dollar value of the blind. Defines how "big" the game is. Obviously you need a much larger stack to play a $50 limit game than a $0.50 game.

Limping
Calling the big blind in pre-flop action.

Nuts
To hold the best combination of cards currently possible. Remember, although you have the nuts on the flop, you may lose after the turn and the river. Holding J10 a flop of 7, 8 and 9 would give you the nuts – the best possible straight! But if the turn or river brings another 9, a guy holding 99 would now have a four of a kind making them the nuts.

Position
A player's position in relation to the dealer's button. As the button moves so does your position. These are defined as follows;

Early The first three seats left of (after) the button. The least desirable positions as these players must make their moves first.
Middle Seats 4 to 7 after the button.
Late Positions 8 and 9. Playing out of this position gives players an edge since they have already seen the other player's moves.
On the button This seat acts last and as such, has an even bigger edge than the late position.

Open-ended straight
A straight draw that can hit both ways. With a J10 on the flop, a player holding KQ has an open-ended straight draw, hitting with an ace or a nine. See Inside straight.

Outs
The total number of possibilities a player has to win a pot based on the current situation. If he holds 99 and needs another 9 to win, then he would have a total of two outs.

Over card
Pocket cards that have a value higher than the highest card currently on the board. An ace and a king are over cards to a 57J flop.

Pocket pair
Holding two equally valued cards like AA, KK, 77 or 22.

Rag
A low value community card that will probably have no effect on the outcome of a hand.

Ring game
Single table game where all bets are made directly from a player's stack and not put into a prize pool and divided at the end as in a tournament. It's every hand for itself. Players can join and enter these games as they please. Sometimes referred to as a cash game.

A set
A pocket pair that connects with the board making a three of a kind.

Showdown
All players still left in the pot after the final betting round show their cards to reveal the winner.

Stack the pot
Winning the pot and adding it to your stack.

Starting hand
The two face-down cards dealt to each player at the start of a hand.

Steam
When a player loses their temper and start playing badly they're steaming.

Streak
To be "in the zone" and win with whatever cards you are dealt.

Suited / off suit
Starting hands with matching suits – hearts, clubs, spades or diamonds.

Tells
Behavioural patterns that provide subtle clues of a players moves and strategies.

Tilt
To completely lose it and play like a madman. This is most common after a player has taken several bad beats.

Trap
To lure other player to stay in and preferably raise a pot you are absolutely sure you are going to win.


Hand nicknames

AA Pocket Rockets, Bullets, American Airlines
KK Cowboys, King Kong
QQ Double date, Canadian Aces, Siegfried and Roy
JJ Fish hooks
99 Wayne Gretzky
88 Snowmen
77 Sunset strip
66 Route 66
55 Speed limit
44 Magnum, Sail boat
33 Crabs
22 Ducks
AK Big slick
AQ Big chick
AJ Black Jack, Jack-ass
KQ Royalty, Marriage
KJ Kojak
J5 Jackson five
Q3 Gay waiter
95 Dolly Parton
A8 Dead man's hand
Back in 1876, a player named Wild Bill Hickock was shot after winning with it!
K9 Canine
J4 Flat tyre

Poker chat abbreviations

nh Nice hand
vnh Very nice hand
gg Good going
lol Laugh out loud
tu Thank you
wtf What the f***?
str8 Straight
wp Well played
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