Poker Glossary

Poker terminology is important. To be able understand the game and communicate with other poker players, it can be helpful to learn the basic poker terms, it also provides a good foundation and knowledge of how the game works.


Abbreviation for two aces as the starting hand. Also known as Pocket Rockets or Bullets. The best starting hand in Hold'em.


Ace-King or Ace-King "suited" (AK's). Nickname is "The Big Slick."

Bad Beat

When you have a winning hand but your opponent wins the upper hand against all odds. Bad beats will result mostly in that it is eliminated, or that they are playing in a maniacal manner.

Bankroll Management

This is how you manage your bankroll when playing poker. For example: One might set a guideline of having 100 buy ins for any specific limit in order to play.

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Bleeding chips

This slang term is used to describe a player who is losing chips in a more than usual manner. You may hear a player say: “I’ve been bleeding chips all night and almost down to nothing.”


Two cards that are within 4 short of each other so as to possibly make a ladder. AK, JT, A2 are all contacts, which are Q8, 62, etc. The contacts "related to each other", ie, JT, 78, is better to have, because they can pick up the steps at low and high side. There are no differences between them.

Call the Clock

The clock in poker is used when someone is believed to be taking too much time. If deemed necessary, the dealer will give the player 1 minute to make a decision or forfeit his/her hand.

Case Card

This is the last card in the deck of any one value. For example, if you already have 3 eights, the last eight in the deck is called the case eight.

Dead Money

Any money put into the pot by players who are no longer in the hand is considered dead money. It can also mean money from a weak or bad player in the pot.

Deal it Twice

In some games of poker players will elect to run the community cards twice. This is usually when two players are all in and wish to cut down on variance.

Early Position

At a poker table, the first two people to act before the flop are referred to as the early position players.

Eight or Better

This is a type of poker game that is played. It is a split pot game and has a high hand and a low hand winner. Only hands that contain cards of 8 or lower can win the low pot.


The three common cards are turned over after the first round of betting.

Full Boat or Boat

A full house.

Hand odds

The odds to get the card to complete your hand. This is a theoretical number at best, but it gives you something to go by, to see if the pot is worth it to try to draw the card you need.

Home Game

A game of poker, which is played between you and your friends. Often, there is much bluffing, they all stay in to see all the cards, and it’s typically played at lower stakes.

In Position

Being in position means you act after your opponents during a hand. This is very favorable as you get to see what everyone else will do first.


The second highest card in your hand to determine a winner if players have the same ranking hand. If you both have a pair of Aces, the player with the next highest card (kicker) would win the pot.


A term used to describe a loose aggressive player. Loose-Aggressive-Player.


Folding a hand that was tough to decide on.


To fold your cards without showing them. The dead card pile is also called the muck.

Multi Way

A pot that has more than one player involved.


A poker tournament that spans more than one table. When people are eliminated, the remaining players all move to another table to eventually form the final table that decides the winner.


A very loose, reckless player who is playing and betting almost every hand.


A poker term for the best possible hand in a given hand. You always hope to get the nuts. You cannot lose if you have "Nut Hand." If you do not fold. Used as an adjective in terms such as "Nut Flush," "Nut Straight" and so on.


An abbreviation for off-suit. As in A9os, or A7o.


To open a pot means you are the first person to make a bet in the hand.

Open Limp

To be the first person to enter a pot by calling the big blind instead of raising.


When in the big blind, if no one has raised, you have the option to check or raise.


When the blinds hit every player at the table this is called an orbit.

Pot Committed

If you've put a lot of chips in a pot, you said to be "pot committed." Pot committed is a fallacy and should not be used as an excuse.

Pot Limit

A form of poker that only allows you to bet how much is in the pot.

Pot Odds

The pot to bet ratio that you receive for calling a bet. If it only costs you $10 to possibly win $100, you’re getting 10-1 Pot Odds. This term is more used in Limit Hold'em than No-Limit.


Two or more cards of the same color, that is, clover, spades, hearts, diamonds.

Suited connectors

As a contact, only that they have the same color as well. 87s for example. These are powerful cards when you have ladder, color, and the straight color in the game, pre-flop. These cards usually give you a lot of "outs".

Sit 'N Go (SNG)

A 1-table game where everyone gets the same amount of chips as everyone else for a buy-in. The game is played in the tournament format, with increasing blinds every 10 minutes or so.


A tournament, often held online to get to a bigger tournament in a casino. For online games, tournaments can be considered a satellite tournament, which nobody really play "together". Each satellite is someone who plays from the comfort of their homes.


A term used to describe a tight aggressive player. Tight-Aggressive-Player.


The fourth common card. Also known as Fourth Street.


The fifth and last community card. Also known as Fifth Street.

Under the Gun (UTG)

The first position after the big blind. It is the first position to bet before the flop and 3e to bet after the flop.


A player who plays aggressive and make crazy bets, often become a maniac/loose aggressive after having had very bad luck, so-called "Bad beat”. The term relates to not being able to control emotions so as to become a maniac and loose player.
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