A comprehensive list of poker terminology

If you want to play poker in Las Vegas, it's a good idea to become familiar with some poker terms before you hit the table. 

Here are some of the most common terms that you should learn.

·        Fold

This term is used when a player wants to give up on the hand and surrender their cards.

·        All-In  

This is the act of betting all your chips at once.

·        Call

A call is a bet equal to a player's previous bet. A player who frequently calls without folding or raising their bet is referred to as a calling station.

·        Action 

This can refer to the player's turn to play or the number of bets in the pot. The term “lot of action” refers to a pot with frequent bets.

·        Backdoor

Also known as catching a runner, this is where a poker player makes a hand on the river or turn.

·        Draw

This is playing a hand that isn't good but can improve given the board. If it's impossible for a player to hit the hand they were aiming at, it is referred to as drawing dead.

·        Overcard

This is the highest card on the board. For example, if you have 10 to 9 and the flop happens to be 6-4-2, then you have nothing yet but two overcards.

·        Rainbow

A flop with three different suits. Rainbow also shows that a flush isn’t possible yet. 

·        Kicker

These are cards that are not used within the hand. They help determine the player with a better hand, especially if the cards are identical. For example, if you might have a pair of kings with an ace kicker. 

·        Muck  

This can refer to a pile of folded and burned cards during a hand. In some cases, it can also refer to players folding.

·        Heads Up

If only two players contest a pot, it is known as head up. Showdown can be a heads up but is the remaining two players at the table.

·        Community Cards

Also known as the board, these are cards in the center of the table. They are shared by all players in community poker.

·        Bad Beat

Bad luck in poker.

·        Nuts

This refers to the strongest hand possible. The nut can change during the course of the game.

·        Flop

The first three community cards as a group are known as the flop, the fourth card is known as the turn, and the final card is known as the river.

·        Four of a Kind

Also referred to as quads, this is a hand with four of the same cards. 


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