Page 12 - Jackpot Magazine Tunica ~ September, 2021
P. 12

No limit to jargon used at the poker tables
 Kenny Rogers left us with some good advice: “You gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em.” Although “The Gambler” is a catchy tune and made him a lot of money, you’ll need to know a little more than the lyrics to the song to have success in the poker room.
Now that casinos in Mississippi are off and running with cards being dealt and hands either held or folded, it’s a good time to brush up on poker terms. To better get the hang of poker playing — whether it is Omaha, Texas Hold ’em or No Limit Hold ’em — we’ve put together some of the most popular poker terms. We’ve also thrown in some quotes about poker, which can provide some insight into the game. Best of luck at the tables!
• “Aces are larger than life and greater than mountains.” — Mike Caro
Ace High: A made hand without at least a pair where the high card is an ace.
All-in: Refers to the act of putting all of one’s chips in the middle.
Ante: The bet all players are required to make before a hand is dealt. An ante is similar to a blind, but everyone has to contribute it before a hand commences. Antes give the pot a value right off the bat.
Burn: The discarding of the top card before each betting round. In the case that there is a distinguishing mark on the top card, the burn card keeps the next card to be dealt concealed before it comes out. That way no unfair information is being intentionally or unintentionally conveyed.
Button: The position of the dealer. In live poker, it’s usually denoted by placing a plastic disk in front of the dealer. It rotates clockwise each time the dealer shuffles for a new hand. The button is in an advantageous position, for he acts last in a betting round.
• “No-limit hold’em: Hours of boredom followed by moments of sheer terror.” — Tom McEvoy
Call: To contribute the minimum amount of money to the pot necessary to
continue playing a hand. Check: To pass on betting. If there’s no action (bet) to you, there’s nothing to call. If you
don’t want to bet, you can just “check.” If there’s subsequent action from your fellow players in the betting round, then the action will come back to you to either call, fold or raise.
Check-raise: A check-raise is made when a player checks on the first opportunity to bet and later raises any subsequent bet in the same betting round.
• “Fold and live to fold again.” – Stu Ungar
Fold: To give up by placing your cards face down on the table, losing whatever you have bet so far. You only fold when you think your hand is too weak to compete against the other players.
Four of a kind: A hand containing all four cards of the same rank.
• “Last night I stayed up late playing poker with Tarot cards. I got a full house and four people died.” – Steven Wright
Full house: A hand consisting of a three of a kind and a (different) pair.
• “Limit poker is a science, but no-limit is an art. In limit, you are shooting at a target. In no-limit, the target comes alive and shoots back at you.” — Jack Strauss
Limit: A structure of the game in which bets and raises are capped at a fixed amount. Nuts: The best possible hand one can
have at a given moment.
• “Omaha is a game that was invented by a sadist and is played by masochists.” — Shane Smith
Omaha: A variety of hold’em in which players receive four hole cards and must use two of them, together with three of the five board cards, to make a hand.
Pocket cards: The cards in your hand that are not part of the community cards. In hold’em, they are your two down cards. In Omaha, they are your four down cards. Also
known as hole cards.
• “If you can’t spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, then you are the sucker.” — Matt Damon’s
character in “The Rounders.”
Pot-limit: A structure of the game in which bets and raises are capped by the current size of the pot.
Set: Having a pocket pair that hits on the board, making three of a kind.
Short stack: Having fewer chips than the rest of the players at the table or in the tournament.
• “In the long run there’s no lucky in poker, but the short run is longer than most people know.” — Rick Bennet
Slow play: Playing a hand less aggressively than necessary.
Split pot: When two or more players make the same hand and the pot is divided between equivalent high hands.
• “Show me your eyes and you may as well show me your cards.” — Doyle Brunson
Tell: A telltale indication as to what type of hand a player has, usually by a different mannerism of some kind. The best players do not provide many tells themselves and have an ability to detect tells of their opponents’ in order to determine how to play a hand.
Turn: The fourth community card. Put out face-up, by itself. Also known as Fourth Street.
• Dogs are lousy poker players. When they get a good hand, they wag their tails.” — Unknown
Under the gun: Player sitting in the first- to-act position. It’s the position immediately to the left of the big blind, pre-flop, and to the left of the button for subsequent betting rounds.
Do you have a question on the best way to play to win? Something specific about your favorite game, or a game you’d like to try? Email this magazine at
 Art of Winning
By Arthur Gold
    12 JACKPOT! MAGAZINE September 2021

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