The Ultimate Guide to Poker Terms

Poker

2022-02-22

Benard Maumo

Poker is one online casino game that doesn’t heavily rely on luck. To win a poker online bet, players must know when to call, double down, fold, and so on. You can even practice edge sorting at a land-based casino to gain the upper hand. 

The Ultimate Guide to Poker Terms

But to be a holistic poker player, poker terminology is a must-know. Although there are thousands of poker terms, this page will only focus on the main poker slang. Here they are:

A complete list of poker terms and phrases

Act

To make a play during your turn in online poker. This can be to fold, raise, check, call, or bet.

Aggression/aggressive

An aggressive player tends to open a bet or raise instead of calling or folding. 

All-in

As the name hints, this is when a player decides to risk all their chips on a single hand.

Ante

This is the amount of money or chips players must pay before the game starts. In other words, it’s a mandatory bet in poker.

Bad beat

To lose a poker hand that was initially the favorite to carry the day.

Bankroll

The money a player intends to use on a poker table. Just call it a budget.

Blind

It’s a forced bet for the punter who sits on the dealer button’s left. Usually, you’ll get the small blind or the big blind. 

Bluff

A raise or bet camouflaged as a strong hand when, in reality, the player has a weak hand. It’s some form of disguise in poker.

Boat

Also called the full house, as you’ll see later.

Buy-in

It’s the cost of entry in a poker tournament. This slang also refers to the amount used to purchase chips in real-money online poker.

Call

To match an initial raise or bet. 

Cap

A limit on the amount of raises players can make in a betting round. It’s typically three or four at most online casinos.

Check

To do nothing when it’s your action. 

Community cards

These are cards players share in poker variants like Omaha and Texas Hold’em. They are used to completing hands.

Dealer

The casino employee who dishes out the cards to the players.

Discard

To remove previously dealt cards out of play.

Donkey

A weak poker player.

Downcard

A poker card that is distributed face-down.

Dry board

A measure of the strength of community cards. A dry board has community cards that are unlikely to improve any hand.

Face-down

Distributed cards that are unexposed to the player. Exposed cards are called Face-up cards.

Five of a kind

A poker hand with five cards of the same rank or value.

Flop

The first three community cards distributed face-up.

Flush

A poker hand with five cards of a similar suit.

Fold

To discard a hand, hence becoming inactive in the active pot. 

Four of a kind

A poker hand with up to four hands of similar rank or value.

Full house/full boat

A hand with three cards of similar face value and two cards of equal face value. 

Grinder

A player who makes long but consistent profits over a long period.

Hit-and-run

To win a pot and leave the table immediately.

Hole card

The face-down cards distributed to each player.

In position

An “in position” player is usually the last to act during a river, turn, or flop betting round. 

In turn

An “in turn” player is the one who is next in action according to the game rules.

Joker

A wild card sometimes used in place of an ace or complete a flush or straight. 

Junk

A hand with little value.

Kicker

A dormant card in a hand only used to determine the winning hand in case of a draw. For example, a hand with 8-8-6-6-K beats a hand with 8-8-6-6-Q.

Laydown

To fold a strong poker hand in anticipation of a stronger opponent.

Limp

To enter a pot by calling instead of raising or betting.

Monster

An excellent poker hand that can’t be beaten.

Nit

A player who’s unwilling to take risks.

One pair

A poker hand with two cards of similar rank, i.e., J-J.

Open limp

This is the first person to call the big blind or pre-flop.

Overcard

A higher-ranking card. For example, J is an overcard of 10.

Poker face

Wear a face that doesn’t reveal anything about your cards.

Raise

To increase the initial bet size during the same betting round. 

River

The fifth community card on the board.

Royal flush

The highest possible hand in poker. It consists of A-K-Q-J-10 of a similar suit.

Set

It’s a three of a kind with two hidden cards or pocket pair and a matching community card.

Straight

Five sequential cards like 5-6-7-8-9.

Straight flush

Five sequential cards of the same suit.

Three of a kind

Three cards of similar face value or rank. This hand is sometimes called trips.

Two pair

A hand with two same-value pairs like J-J and 10-10.

Upcard

A card distributed face-up.

Value bet

A wager made by a player hoping to be called.

Wheel

Another poker term used to describe a straight.

Best gambling quote: “Successful gamblers always have two things on their lips: Silence and a smile”

Favorite Casino Game: Blackjack

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