More Great Poker Tips For Newbie Poker Players
Texas Holdem has quickly become the
most popular casino poker game. It is currently the
game you will see televised in such events as the World
Series of Poker and The World Poker Tour. Though Holdem
looks and plays very simply, many experts agree that
it is the most complex of poker games. Due to its complexity,
the game can be kind or harsh to beginners and grizzled
old warriors alike. The action is fast an furious, with
more players, bets, raises and re-raises than many other
typical poker games. Winners win big, losers lose big.
These factors are the essence of what makes Texas Holdem
so enjoyable, and therefore the King at the Casino.
Over the next few days the following is intended to
be a basic introduction to and strategy for playing
Texas Holdem online. For more in depth articles on this
topic, check out our other articles in the Archives
section, or visit our sister site, wageronfootball.com.
The button represents the dealer. In home games, no
button is needed, as the cards are passed around the
table and each player deals in turn. In the casino and
in online poker tables, the dealer is a professional
or a computer. Hence, the necessity of a “button”.
The button moves clockwise around the table after each
hand, and the player “on the button” gets
his cards last and bets last in each round. Keeping
up with the current location of the button is a huge
consideration when determining positional strategy.
Texas Holdem has no ante. To force the action without
an ante, Holdem uses blind bets. The first 2 players
to the left of the button are forced to put in the blind
bets. Typically, the first player puts in the small
blind, equal to half of the minimum bet, while the second
player puts in the big blind, equal to a full minimum
bet. For example, in a game of $10/$20 limits, the small
blind would be $5 and the big blind would be $10.
The Deal and Betting Rounds
Starting with the first player to the left of the button,
each player is dealt 2 cards, face down, called pocket
cards. The first two players to the left of the button
posts the blinds, and the first round of betting ensues.
The first action after the deal is taken by the player
to the left of the big blind. He and subsequent players
can choose to call the big blinds bet, fold or raise.
In most Texas Holdem games, the blinds are live, which
means that in the first round of betting, they get a
chance to call, check or raise when the action moves
around to them. In this sense, the big blind would be
the last player to act after the dealing of the pocket
The flop is 3 cards laid face up in the center of the
table. These cards serve as common cards. Another round
of betting ensues, with the first remaining player to
the left of the button starting the action.
A single card is laid face up, next to the flop, for
a total of 4 cards face up. Another betting round occurs,
starting with the first player remaining to the left
of the button.
A final card is turned face up, bringing the total
number of common cards face up on the board to 5. A
final round of betting occurs, starting with the first
player remaining to the left of the button.
After betting is complete and if more than two players
remain, a showdown occurs in which the winner is determined
by the best five card hand possible using the 5 common
cards and each players' pocket cards. It is entirely
possible for the best hand to be completely “on
the board,” in which case the remaining players
split the pot. It is also possible to have a “tie”
in which the players with the same hand strengths split
After the showdown, the button moves one person clockwise,
and the next hand is dealt. More tomorrow........
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