Poker Glossary

Below you can find an alphabetical list of poker terms. Feel free to check it whenever you run into one you do not understand, while reading our poker strategy articles.

Poker glossary

 Ace High: A hand with an ace but no pair.
 Action: Frequency of betting. A game or hand with a lot of action is one where there is a lot of betting and raising.
 Acting First: The player who must check or bet before the other players is acting first.
 Acting Last: The last player to check, bet, call, or raise is acting last.
 All-in: A player who bets the last amount of chips he has or is disconnected while playing a hand.
 Arg: Internet jargon to indicate frustration.
 Backdoor: A draw that requires both the turn and river card to improve. For example, the turn and river card are both suited, giving you a backdoor flush. Same as runner-runner.
 Bad Beat: A hand that loses to an opponent who gets very lucky, especially when the opponent should not even have played his hand.
 Bankroll: The money you have available to gamble.
 Best of It: A game or bet where you have a long-term positive expectation.
 Bet: The action of committing chips to the pot first in.
 Bettor: The first person to commit chips to the pot on any given betting round.
 Big Bet: The amount of the bet on the last two rounds of betting.
 Blinds: In Texas Holdem and Omaha, the blinds are the forced bets that the first two players to the left of the button must put in the pot. The big blind posts a small bet and the small blind usually posts a half small bet.
 Bluff: A bet or raise when you have little chance of winning the pot if you are called.
 Board: The community cards on the table.
 Bottom Pair: A pair by matching one of your hole cards with the lowest card on the board or a pocket pair lower than all of the cards on the board.
 Button: Also known as the dealer. The last player to receive cards and who acts last on the flop, turn, and river. The blinds sit to the immediate left of the button.
 Call: To put money in the pot equal to an opponent's bet or raise.
 Call a Raise Cold: To call a raise without having committed money previously on the same betting round. Note how this is different than betting or calling and then calling a raise by another opponent.
 Caller: A player who puts money in the pot equal to the bet or raise.
 Cap: The act of putting in the last raise allowable on any given betting round. A capped pot is one where the maximum number of raises has been reached.
 Check: Declining to bet.
 Check-raise: The act of checking and then raising after an opponent bets.
 Close the Betting: Making the last call on any given betting round.
 Cold Call: see Call a Raise Cold.
 Counterfeited: A card that improves your hand but gives an opponent an even better hand.
 Crying Call: Calling when you feel you have a very small chance of winning.
 Cut-off: The player who acts right before the button or dealer.
 Dealer: The dealer position is the same as the button position.
 Discount: Reducing the odds for drawing to an out by the probability that the out is counterfeited or you are drawing dead.
 Disregard: You should disregard an out when you are drawing dead to it.
 Drawing Dead: Drawing with no chance of improving to the winning hand.
 Early position: In a ten-handed game, the first three seats to the left of the blinds. After the flop, early position refers to players who must act first.
 Expectation: The average result on any play in the long run.
 Favorite: The hand that has the best chance of winning. Note that some-limes you could be the favorite without currently having the best hand. For example, an open-ended straight flush draw is the favorite over a pair.
 First In: The first player who commits chips to the pot.
 Fish: A poor player who usually loses money. Generally refers to players who draw to very weak hands and often play many poor starting hands.
 Flop: The betting round where three cards have been dealt face up.
 Fold: Giving up on a hand rather than calling a bet or raise.
 Free Card: A card that you can see without having to call a bet.
 Full Table: A game with nine or ten players.
 Gut Shot: A draw to a straight where only one card can give you the straight.
 Heads up: A pot contested against a lone opponent.
 High Cards: Any card 9 or higher.
 Implied Odds: The relationship between the current pot and the bets you expect to win to the current bet.
 Induce a Bluff: Playing your hand weakly so that an opponent might try a bluff.
 Induce a Call: Playing your hand weakly so that an opponent might make a crying call.
 Kicker: The other card in your hand that has not matched the board.
 Late Position: In a ten-handed game, the last two seats at the table generally known as the cutoff position in seat nine and the button in seat ten.
 Limp: The act of calling first in before the flop.
 Lol: Internet jargon for "laugh out loud".
 Lone Opponent: When only one opponent is contesting the pot.
 Loose: A player who plays many hands. After the flop, a loose player will often play to the river and will try bluffs a lot. A game is loose when there are a lot of players who see the flop.
 Maniac: A super aggressive player who is constantly raising the pot and plays most of his hands.
 Middle Pair: A pair below the highest card on the table.
 Middle Position: In a ten-handed game, seats six, seven, and eight.
 Nuts: Holding the best possible hand on any given betting round.
 Odds: The chance against an event happening.
 Open: The first player to commit chips to the pot other than the blind money.
 Open-ended Straight: A straight that can be made by two different cards.
 Outs: A card that will improve your hand, preferably to the winning hand.
 Overcard: A card higher than the highest card on the board.
 Overpair: A pocket pair higher than the highest card on the board.
 Pocket Pair: Holding a pair with the two cards dealt to you.
 Position: The order in which you have to act. You are in early position if acting first and late position if acting last.
 Pot Odds: The relationship between the total amounts in the pot to the amount of the current bet.
 Preflop: The first betting round when the players receive their two hole cards.
 Probability: The chance that an event will occur, generally expressed in percentage terms.
 Protect: Betting or raising so that your opponents must pay a price to try and draw to beat you.
 Rag: A board card lower than a 9.
 Rainbow: A flop with three different suits.
 Raise: To increase the bet an additional amount.
 Read: Determining the possible hands of your opponent.
 Rebuy: The act of purchasing additional chips.
 Reraise: To increase an opponent's raise an additional amount.
 Ring Game: A full table cash game with nine to ten players.
 River: The fifth board card.
 Rock: A player who is very tight and rarely bluffs.
 Running Pair: When the turn and river card are a pair.
 Runner-runner: A draw that requires both the turn and river card to improve. For example, the turn and river card are both suited giving you a backdoor flush.
 Scare Card: A card that is potentially dangerous either to you or your opponent.
 Semi-bluff: A bet or raise, in which if called, you probably do not have the best hand, but you could improve to the best hand on the next card.
 Set: Three of a kind when holding a pocket pair that matches one of the board cards.
 Shark: A very good player.
 Short-handed: Refers to games when only several players are playing. Some sites specifically offer short-handed games that only allow up to 5 or 6 players at the table.
 Short-stacked: A player who does not have very many chips left to bet.
 Slowplay: Checking or just calling a very strong hand on one round of betting to win more bets on later rounds of betting.
 Small Bet: The amount of the bet on the first two rounds of betting.
 Split the Pot: Dividing the pot equally between two or more opponents who have the same hand.
 Steal: Raising to win the blinds preflop. Stealing the pot on later betting rounds is the same as a bluff.
 Street: A betting round such as the flop, turn, or river.
 Strong: Term to describe good poker players.
 Table Image: How a player is perceived to play, generally relates to how tight or loose a player is.
 Tell: An act or gesture that might indicate how strong or weak your opponent's hand might be.
 Tight: A player who doesn't play very many hands. After the flop, tight players rarely bluff and generally only continue to play with strong hands or strong draws. A game is tight when there are not very many players who see the flop.
 Tilt: A player who starts playing recklessly and wild because he is upset and angry.
 Top Pair: A pair using one of your hole cards to match the highest card on the board.
 Trap Hands: Hands that typically are dominated by other hands, such as KJ, Kx and Q10. These hands rarely win large pots, unless you hit a straight, and can lose a lot of money to hands with better kickers.
 Trips: Three of a kind when one of your pocket cards matches a pair on the board.
 Turn: The fourth board card.
 Under the Gun: The first player to act preflop in early position.
 Weak: Term to describe poor poker players. They generally play too many hands preflop and will call too often after the flop.

More articles on general poker:

 Quick start
 Poker bankroll management
 Poker position
 Poker playing styles
 Poker software
 Optimal poker session length
 Poker history
 Poker tips

Go back to the Online Poker Strategy.