Dictionary of poker terms and poker phrases used in online poker and in live poker games. Look up those poker phrases or slag you don’t understand. Definitions and explanations of the most important poker terms and some lesser known poker lingo you hear at the poker table.
Ace-High … A hand having an ace but no pair.
Aces Up … Two pair, the highest pair being aces.
Action … Putting chips in the pot, gambling of any sort.
Action Player … A player who gives a lot of action, also called a loose player.
Act out of turn … A player attempting to bet or raise before his turn to act.
Advertise … To bluff and then show the hand to other players in the hope that they will later call when they have a decent hand.
American Airlines … Two Aces – AA.
All-in … Chucking all you chips into the pot.
Ante … The small compulsory bet that all must pay to play each round.
Babies … Small cards – 2,3,4 or 5.
Back Door … To make a flush or a straight with the last two cards even when this wasn’t the hand the player was originally drawing to.
Bad Beat … When a great hand is beaten by a lucky draw (ie. AA bet all-in & called by someone with 72 before the flop who then goes on to win).
Bankroll … A players total stake money.
Belly Buster … A draw and/or catch to an inside straight.
Best Hand … The hand that takes the pot.
Bet … To put chips into the pot.
Bet half the pot … To bet half the amount of the pot.
Bet into To … make a bet looking at what seems to be a superior hand.
Bet the Pot … When a player bets the amount of the pot.
Bicycle … A straight – A,2,3,4,5.
Big Blind … The bigger of the two compulsory bets in Texas Hold-em.
Big Slick … Ace King (AK) maybe AK suited or off.
Blank … A card that doesn’t look like it’s improved anyone’s hand.
Blinds … The compulsory bets made before the deal in games like Texas Hold-Em.
Bluff … When you bet more than the value of your hand would suggest, in the hope that others would fold better hands. Making players believe you have a better hand than you actually have.
Board … The community cards dealt out on the table shared by all players.
Bottom Pair … When a player pairs the lowest card on the board.
Broadway … An Ace high straight A,K,Q,J,10.
Broomcorn’s Uncle … Someone who antes or blinds themselves away.
Bullets … A pair of Aces.
Bump … To Raise.
Burn … To take a card from the top of the deck before dealing out the cards (in an attempt to stop cheating) which is placed in the discards.
Button … The dealer button, round disk moved around clockwise to denote which player is dealer.
Buy-in … The minimum amount needed to sit down in a particular poker game.
Buy the button … A bet or raise which makes or is made to make the players behind you fold, thus making you the last to act in future betting rounds.
Call … Matching the previous bet to stay the hand without raising it.
Calling Station … A derogatory term for a player who consistently calls and cannot be bluffed.
Card Speak … When the cards are laid face up on the table the correct reading of the hand will win the pot – Even if the player miss calls his hand.
Cash out / in … To leave the game and convert your chips to cash – A good thing.
Check … To offer a free card to the rest of the table in the hope that everyone checks and you all get to see the next card for free / without a bet.
Check-Raise … When a player first checks then raises after someone bets in the same betting round.
Chemmy Shuffle … To scramble the cards face down on the table.
Chinch Hand … A hand that will win easily.
Chop … Same as to split the pot.
Clinic … A game where there are lots of post-mortems about previous hands.
Coffee Housing … Talking in an attempt to mislead other players about the strength of your hand (considered bad etiquette in the UK but fine in the US).
Community Cards … Cards on the table used by all players to make their hand.
Connectors … Consecutive cards which could help make a straight.
Cowboys … Two Kings.
Cripple the Deck … To have all the cards that make up a good hand with a particular board, making everyone else’s hands unplayable, if you bet no-one would call.
Dead man’s hand … Two pair, Aces and Eights – The hand Wild Bill Hickock was shot in the back while playing this hand in 1876.
Dealers Choice … A game where each dealer, in turn, chooses the type of poker game to be played.
Deuces … A pair of Twos.
Dog … The worst or underdog hand.
Down Cards … The cards dealt to a player that only they can use.
Doyle Brunson … 10-2 the hand Doyle Brunson won the World Championship with 2 years in a row.
Drawing dead … Drawing to a hand that can’t possibly win.
Drawing hand … A potentially strong hand which needs a particular card(s) to make it.
Driving Seat … A player holding the best hand and making the betting.
Ducks … Pair of Twos.
Early Position … In a position at the table where the player must act before most of the other players (usually the two seats to the left of the binds).
Expectation … The average amount you make in a specific period or event.
Family Pot … A pot in which most if not all of the players are involved.
Fast game … A game with lots of action and frequently heavy betting.
Fast Player … A heavy and frequent raiser.
Feeler Bet … A minimum bet made to test the strength of other players hands.
Fifth Street … The 5th community card dealt, also known as the 5th or the “River”.
Fill up … To hit your draws and make your hand.
Fish … A weak player, also known as the “sucker”.
Flat Call … Calling a bet without raising.
Flop … The first 3 community cards dealt.
Flush … Any five cards of the same suit.
Flush Draw … When a player has 4 cards to the flush and is hoping to draw a fifth to make his flush.
Fold … To lay down your hand, thus giving up any claim to the pot for that hand.
Fold out of turn … To fold early, not good manners.
Four of a kind … Four cards of the same value or number also known as Quads.
Fourth Street … The forth community card dealt, also know as the 4th or the turn card.
Free Card … When all players check, the next card is seen for free.
Freeroll … Online tournament which can be entered for free, generally providing they have cashed into a money account.
Freezeout … A game or tournament where all players start with the same amount and play until one player has won all the chips.
Friendly Game … A rare and as unseen as rocking horse sh*t.
Full House … Any three cards of the same value, plus any other two cards of the same value – ie. trips and a pair.
Gutshot … To draw to and/or hit an inside straight draw (2,3,5,6 hits 4).
Hand … A players best five cards.
Heads Up … When your playing head to head with one other player.
High Roller … A heavy high stakes player.
Hold ‘em … Also known as Texas Hold ‘em
Hole Cards … The cards your dealt also known as down cards.
Ignorant End … The low end of a straight.
Inside Straight … Four cards which require another between the top and the bottom card to complete a straight. If you catch it you make an inside straight.
Jacks or Better … A form of poker in which a player needs to have at least a pair of jacks or better to open the betting.
Kansas City Lowball … Type of lowball poker in which the worst hand (2,3,4,5,7 off suit) is the best hand. Also known as Deuce to Seven.
Keep them Honest … To call at the end of a hand to prevent someone from bluffing.
Key Card … A card that gives you a big draw or makes your hand.
Kibitzer … An unappreciated spectator at a card game.
Kicker … The highest unpaired side card in a players hand – the deciding card between two similar hands.
Kick it … To raise.
Kicker Trouble … When you have a low second card which will cause problems if another player turns over the same hand but with a likely higher kicker.
Knock … To Check.
Kojak … K-J / King Jack.
Ladies … Two Queens
Late Position … Position on a round of betting where the player must act after most of the other players have acted (usually considered the two positions next to the button).
Lay Down … Fold.
Limit Poker … A game with fixed min and max betting intervals along with a set number of raises.
Limper … The first player to call a bet.
Limp in … To call rather than raise.
Live Hand … A hand that could still win the pot.
Live one … A not very knowledgeable player who plays too many hands.
Lock … Unbeatable hand.
Look … When a player just calls the final bet to see the showdown.
Loose … A player who plays lots of hands.
Lowball … A form of poker in which the lowest hand wins the pot.
Main Pot … The centre pot. Any other bets are placed in a side pot and are contested amongst the other remaining players. This occurs when a player goes all-in.
Maniac … A very aggressive play who plays a lot of hands.
Middle Pair … When a player pairs with one of the middle board cards.
Middle Position … Between the early and late position players in a round of betting (5,6,7 seat after the button).
Monkey … 500 pounds sterling.
Muck … To fold your hand or the pile of discarded cards.
Multi-tabling … Playing at multiple tables in order to maximise or increase hourly win rates by playing more than one table.
Multi accounting … The very unwise practise of opening multiple accounts at gaming sites to try and abuse bonus offers using fraudulent account details to have several accounts at the same site – DO NOT DO THIS – EVER.
Minimum buy-in … The least amount you can start a game with.
Monster … A very big hand. Also a player who accumulates chips after having a small stack.
NH … Internet speak for Nice Hand.
NS … Nice Steal.
NP … Nice Play.
NB … Nice Bluff/ Nice Buy.
No LImit … A player can bet as much as he likes (as long as they have in front of them) on any round of betting.
Nuts … The best possible hand at any point in the game. An unbeatable hand.
Nut Flush … The best available flush.
Odds … The probability of making a hand against the probability of not making a hand.
Offsuit … Cards of a different suit.
Omaha … Poker game similar to Texas Hold’em but with four down cards.
On Tilt … When a player reacts badly or wildly as a result of a bad beat or a bad run of cards.
Open-ended … Straight Four consecutive cards where one additional card is needed at either end to make a straight.
Open Pair … A pair that is dealt face-up.
Outs … Possible cards which could improve a hand and turn a loser into a winner.
Outdrawn … To geet beaten by a player drawing cards to make a worse hand win.
Overpair … A pair higher than any card on the board.
Paint … Face or picture cards (Jack, Queen, King).
Pair … Two cards of the same face value or number value.
Pass … Fold.
Pat Hand … A hand which is complete.
Pay Off … To call the last round of betting when your not sure if you have the best hand.
Picture Cards … Face cards / Paint.
Play the board … Using all the community cards to form your hand and no hole cards hen.
Pocket … Hole or down cards.
Pocket Rockets … A pair of Aces in the pocket or hole.
Pony … 25 Pounds Sterling.
Position … Where a player is sat in relation to the dealer button.
Post … You post blinds.
Pot … The total amount of the bets in a round – the pile of chips in the middle.
Pot Limit … When the maximum raise is no more than the current amount in the pot.
Pot Odds … The amount of money in the pot divided by the amount of money it will cost you to continue in the hand. eg. If there is £30 in the pot and it costs you £12 to call the bet you are getting pot odds of 30/12 or 5/2.
Protecting your hand … Either placing a chip or token on top of your cards to make sure they’re not accidentally folded. Or to bet money to protect the money you’ve already invested in the pot regardless of the strength of your hand.
Put Down … To fold.
Quads … Four of a kind.
Qualifier … In High Low game, it is requirement the Low hand must meet to win the pot.
Rag(s) … A card or cards that are of no use to anyone’s hand or the board cards.
Ragged Flop … A flop with cards that are seemingly of no use to any player.
Railbird … Someone who hangs around the poker room watching games or waiting to get in a game.
Rainbow Flop … A flop with three different suites.
Raise … Betting the amount to call plus some more (this amount must then be called or raised by the other players).
Rake … The small cut or percentage taken from a round of betting or game by the house or gaming establishment for hosting the game.
Razz … Seven Card Stud where the lowest five cards win the pot.
Read … To try and work out what another players cards either from his betting or from logical deduction.
Re-Buy … The amount of money a player pays to add a fixed amount of chips to their stack during a tournament.
Re-Raise … To raise a raise.
Represent … To bet or act in a way that suggests to the other players you are holding a strong or specific hand.
Ring Game … A live game that isn’t a tournament.
River … The 5th community card dealt.
Rock … A player who only plays solid hands, only raising when they have a brilliant hand and never bluffs.
Rock Garden … A table of rocks.
Roll … A winning streak.
Rounders … Professional hustlers. Also a movie starring Matt Damon and Ed Norton.
Royal Flush … An Ace high straight (A,K,Q,J,10) all of the same suit.
Run … A straight.
Rush … A winning streak.
Satellite … A small stake game where the prize is entry to a bigger stake tournament or game.
Scare Card … A card which could make your hand or your opponents hand a losser.
See …Call eg. I’ll see your fifty.
Sell Your Hand … To make a small bet with a big hand in the hope that someone will call.
Semi-Bluff … First used by poker genius David Sklansky, to bet or raise on a hand which isn’t the best hand but has a reasonable chance of improving.
Set … Three of a kind, trips.
Showdown … When all the hands are shown.
Side Pot … A separate pot contested by other players when one player is all-in.
Slow Play … When a player with a strong hand checks to give other players a free card and a chance to improve their hand.
Small Blind … The first and smaller of the two compulsory bets.
Snake Eyes … A pair of Aces.
Speeding Around … Playing loose for a while then tightening right up for a while with no definable pattern.
Splash the pot … When a player throws their chips in obscuring the amount of the pot. Considered bad etiquette.
Split … Pot A tie.
Stack … Pile of chips.
Steal … A type of bluff usually made in late position to steal the pot.
Steaming … Same as going on Tilt.
Straddle … To put up a voluntary blind bet of minimum of double the big blind and forcing the action starts on their left.
Straight … Five consecutive cards (different suits).
Straight Flush … Five consecutive cards of the same suit.
String Bet … An illegal bet where a player puts some chips into the pot and then reaches back to his stack for more without stating the size of the bet.
Suited … Cards of the same suit.
Sweeten the Pot … To raise the pot to make it more attractive to win.
TY OR ty … Online poker speak for thankyou.
Tell … Giving away the strength of your hand, generally a physical tell but can also be in the amount bet.
Texas Hold ‘Em … Also known as Hold’em.
Thirty Miles … Three tens.
Three of a kind … Three cards of the same face value or number, also know as trips.
Tight … A player who doesn’t play many hands. a tight game is one where there isn’t very much action.
Tilt … Going on tilt means loosing control of a players emotions and playing badly or even worse than normal.
TOC … Tournament of Champions.
Ton … 100 Pounds Sterling.
Top Pair … When a player pairs one of his cards with the highest card on the board.
Treys … A pair of threes.
Trips … Three of a kind.
Turn … 4th community card.
Two Pair … A hand consisting of two different pairs.
Under the Gun … The first player to act in any betting round.
Up Card … A card that is dealt face-up.
Value Bet … Betting with the hope that a player will call with a worse hand.
Walking Sticks … A pair of Sevens.
Wild Card … A card that can be played any value.
Wire … To giveaway the value of your hand.
Wired Pair … A Pair in the first two cards of any poker game.