Besides the terms listed here, there are thousands of common and uncommon informal or slang terms and this is not intended to be a comprehensive dictionary for all poker games.
Made hand: A hand which does not need to improve with a draw, such as a Straight or a Flush. Sometimes known as a Pat hand.
Maniac: A reckless and aggressive player.
Match the pot: To bet the amount in the Pot.
Micro stakes: Very Low Internet poker stakes which would be impractical for live games to spread, such as $0.01/$0.02 blinds.
Missed blind: When one sits out in either of the blind positions, it is usually necessary to pay (post) the equivalent amount in order to rejoin the game.
Mixed limit: A game type where different betting structures are implemented on different rounds of betting. For example in Hold’em the betting may be Pot limit pre-flop and No limit thereafter.
Move (all) in: Bet all of one's chips.
Multi table tournament: (MTT): A tournament with players requiring more than one table, usually with a winner declared when a single player has won all the chips.
Muck: To release one's cards at showdown without showing. Can apply to either a winning or a losing hand. A mucked hand during a showdown is not folded and will be visible in a hand history to all participants in the hand.
Multi way: Having more than two players giving action in a Pot.
NH: Chat shorthand for nice hand.
Nit: A very tight player who is unwilling to take risks.
No limit (NL): A variation of poker where players are allowed to bet all of their chips at any time, regardless of Pot size and stakes, (except for special circumstances when a raise of any kind is restricted, such as a player under-raising all-in).
Nut: The best hand possible.
Off suit: Two or more cards which are not the same suit.
Omaha Hi/Lo poker: Also known as eights or better. A variation of Omaha where half the Pot is awarded equally to both the best high hand and the best low hand, but only when the low hand is deemed to legally qualify, according to the ceiling or maximum requirement for the game.
Omaha poker: A variation of poker whereby a player is dealt four Hole cards and five community cards are dealt out face up in three stages. The ‘Flop’ where three cards are exposed, then two additional cards, one at a time. There is a round of betting following the deal, the first three cards (Flop), the fourth card (Turn) and the fifth card (River). Players make a hand using the best five-card combination of the seven cards available to them, but have to use exactly two from their Hole cards and exactly three from the board.
One-eyed royals: Nickname for the three cards which show in profile and therefore have just one eye visible. The one-eyed jacks (of hearts and spades), and the king of diamonds.
Open (betting): To be the first player to bet.
Open ended: When a Straight draw has the possibility of being completed by drawing a card of two different ranks.
One player to a hand (OPTAH): Acronym of the rule which forbids players to take advice from anyone else during a hand.
Orbit: A full rotation of the Dealer button and Blinds at a table.
Out: A card that a losing hand needs in order to improve and potentially win the Pot.
Out of position (OOP): A player acting before another player is at a strategic disadvantage and said to be out of position.
Overcall: To call a bet or a raise after another player has already called the bet.
Overcard: A Community card that is higher than any pocket pair in the Hole cards held by a player, or a card in the player's Hole cards that is higher than the Community cards.
Overpair: A pair in the Hole cards held by a player that is higher than all of the Community cards.
Paint: Nickname for a royal or picture card. i,e. king, queen or jack.
Pair: Two cards of the same rank.
Passive: A style of play that is mainly checking and calling and rarely raising.
Pat hand: A made hand which does not require a draw to improve it.
Play the board: In community games, to use the Community cards as your hand without using any Hole cards.
Pocket / wired: Slang for Hole cards, such as pocket pair or wired pair.
Pocket rockets: A pair of aces in one's Hole cards.
Position: Your seat in a betting round in relation to the Dealer.
Post: To pay a blind bet before the cards are dealt.
Post flop: Pertains to the betting rounds in a community game after the first three Community cards are shown.
Pot: The sum of chips that players wager during a poker hand, which is awarded either to the player(s) with the winning cards or to a player who has made a bet or raise that was not called.
Pot committed: The situation where folding one's hand is not a consideration because of the Pot size compared to your chip stack, regardless of hand strength.
Pot limit: The variation pf poker where the maximum bet allowed is the total of all previous bets in the hand.
Pot odds: The ratio of chips that can be won compared to the amount required to call a bet.
Pre-flop: The initial betting round in a community game when players have their Hole cards, and no Community cards are yet shown.
Push: To go all-in.
Put on a hand: To narrow down the possibilities of an opponent’s hand strength, sometimes called a read.
Quads: Four-of-a-kind. Four cards of the same rank.
Qualifier: In Omaha Hi/Lo games, the low must meet certain requirements, known as the Ceiling, to be a valid low hand.
Quartered: Used in reference to Omaha Hi/Lo games. A winning player may receive back less than they bet, even with the best possible high or low hand because they have to share their portion of the Pot with another player with the same hand.
Rack: The tray in front of the Dealer where chips are stored.
Race: When there is no more betting because all active players are all-in and the rest of the community cards are dealt out.
Rag: A low value card that will unlikely affect the outcome of the hand.
Rail / Railbird: In live games, the rail separates the table from spectators, who are known as railbirds when they comment on the game.
Rainbow: Three or more cards of different suits, especially when referring to a flop in a Community card variant.
Raise: To increase the bet size after another player has made a wager.
Rake: The fee taken by the cardroom for each hand after the hand is finished. Rake is part of the Pot during the hand.
Range: The perceived Hole cards a player believes an opponent may have based on the play during a hand.
Rathole: To take some chips from a table during a game, but to continue playing. Considered bad etiquette. Removing all of one's chips from a table and reseating with less chips within a certain time period, (even with the table maximum, if it is less than the amount recently taken away) is usually not allowed and considered an attempt to rathole.
Rebuy: In Ring games bringing more chips to the table. In tournaments, to purchase more chips for a period at the start of the tournament when the player has no chips left or less than the starting amount.
Represent: To play a hand in a way that strongly suggests a certain holding or a degree of strength, possibly strong or weak.
Ring: Tables where players can join or leave as they wish, and the games may continue indefinitely as long as there are players seated.
River: In Community card variants, the fifth and last card to be dealt to the board.
Rock: A very conservative player.
Royal / Royal Flush: Having all five top ranking cards (A-K-Q-J-10) of the same suit. The maximum hand possible in standard poker games where no wild or joker card is used.
Royal poker. A variation of Texas Hold'em where only the cards ten and upwards are used in the deck, meaning very high ranking hands are much more common. A Straight rarely is the winning hand and the only possible Flush is a Royal Flush.
Runner-runner: When the Turn and the River cards are necessary to complete a hand. Also known as Backdoor.
Rush / Heater: A prolonged winning streak, or a run of good hands.
Sandbag: To slow play a strong hand by smooth calling bets or checking with the intention of getting action later in the Pot.
Satellite: A tournament which is a feeder to a tournament with a larger entry stake. The prize payout of a satellite is most commonly a Ticket or a Seat (direct entry) to the next event which may not be used for any other purpose.
Scare card: A card that falls and may help an opponent improve their hand, such as a card pairing the board or making the completion of a Straight or Flush easier in a community game or in the open cards of a stud player.
Scoop: To win both halves of the Pot in Omaha Hi/Lo variants, specifically when a low is actually possible.
Semi bluff: To bet with a hand that may improve at a later stage and thus have a chance of also winning the Pot when it does not improve.
Set: Three-of-a-kind when two Hole cards from the hand and one from the board are used, or all three cards are in the hand at stud.
Shark: Someone playing with the intention of winning.
Shootout: A Multi table tournament variation where each table plays down to a winner and there is no rebalancing, with the winners being reseated together and repeating the process.
Shorthanded: A game having 6 or fewer players.
Short stack / Shorty: Having a stack of chips which is much less than one or more other stacks at the table.
Showdown: The act of comparing hand strengths at the completion of all rounds of betting, if more than one player remains.
Side pot(s): One or more Pots separate from the main Pot, created to cater to the situation where players are all-in and have differing amounts of chips.
Sit and go (SNG): A tournament requiring a certain number of players to register in order to start, as opposed to a scheduled starting time.
Slow play: To disguise the strength of one's hand by appearing passive and checking or just calling other players' bets instead of raising.
Small blind (SB): The smaller of the forced bets made by two players immediately to the left of the Dealer before cards are dealt.
Small blind position: The seat immediately to the left of the Dealer where the player paid the Small blind.This player has to act first on each round of betting in community games
Smooth call: To flat call a bet with a strong holding when a raise would also be considered.
Snap call: To call quickly without much thought.
Snow: Slang for a hand in 5-card draw where a player attempts to represent a Pat hand by drawing no cards and betting as a complete bluff.
Soft play: To deliberately not win the maximum amount from an opponent by betting small amounts or checking.
Split pot: When two (or more) hands of exactly equal strength win a hand, and the Pot is divided between them.
Spread: The range between the maximum and minimum bet sizes at a table.
Squeeze play: A positional Raise or reraise designed to apply pressure on opponents due to their having to consider players other than the last raiser. Often utilized while holding a weaker hand.
Stack: The chips at a table owned by a player in a game.
Starting hand: One's Hole cards before any cards are drawn or Community cards are dealt.
Stakes: The rules governing the amount everyone at a table is able to bet.
Steal: To bluff. Frequently applied to an attempt to make the blind positions fold.
Steam: To play recklessly while emotionally aggravated.
Straddle: An optimal extra live blind bet, usually made by the player immediately to the left of the standard Big blind, which effectively raises the stakes of the game. Rarely seen at online games.
Straight: Poker hand consisting of five cards of consecutive ranks, but not all the same suit.
Straight flush: Poker hand consisting of five cards of consecutive ranks, where they are all the same suit.
Street: A round of betting or the card which is dealt for that round.
Structured: A variant of poker such as Fixed limit or Limit poker where the amount that can be bet at any time is predetermined by the rules.
Stud: A variant of poker where there are no Community cards, and a player must construct their hand of just the cards dealt to them, which may be a combination of face up and face down cards.
Suck out: Derogatory term used to describe a situation where a hand that was very unlikely to win has drawn favorably to win the Pot.
Suit: One of the four categories (spades, hearts, diamonds, clubs) into which the cards in a standard deck are divided.
Suited: Two or more cards of the same suit.
Suited connectors: Two or more cards of the same suit with consecutive ranks.
TAG: A tight aggressive player who plays mainly strong starting hands in an aggressive manner.
Tainted outs: Cards which improve one's hand but also potentially improve an opponent's hand to a stronger one. For example, when a straight card also makes a flush possible or a flush card pairs the board in community games.
Tank: To think for a prolonged amount of time before making a play.
Tell: An indication of a player's hand strength through observation of body language. Most relevant in live games but some players believe there are timing tells in online games.
Texas Hold’em: A variation of poker whereby a player is dealt two Hole cards and five Community cards are dealt out face up in three stages. The ‘Flop’ where three cards are exposed, then two additional cards, one at a time. There is a round of betting following the deal, the first three cards (Flop), the fourth card (Turn) and the fifth card (River). Players make a hand using the best five cards of the seven available to them.
Texture: How well the Community cards are coordinated. Whether there is a high (wet board) or low (dry board) possibility of straights or a flush.
Three bet: To reraise a Raise. To be the first player to put in a third bet.
Three-of-a-kind: Three cards of the same rank.
Tight: Conservative play.
Tilt: Reckless play, usually associated with overly aggressive, sub optimal play.
Top pair: When a Hole card matches the highest card on the board.
Top two: When two Hole cards match the highest two cards on the board.
Trap: To slow play with a strong hand.
Trey: Slang for a three.
Trips: Three-of-a-kind, a set, or three cards of the same rank.
Turbo: A tournament variation where the blind levels increase faster than standard, but not as quickly as hyper.
Turn: The fourth card on the board in community games.
Under the gun (UTG): The position immediately to the left of the Big blind. First to act in a round of betting.
Underdog: A hand that is not favored to win.
Underfull: A Full house where the three of a kind is lower ranking than the pair and increases the chances of it losing in community games like Hold’em or Royal and more so in Omaha.
Value Bet: A bet which is sized to encourage callers because the bettor either has the best hand or wants to build the Pot due to having a draw with a high expectation of winning.
Variance: The statistical measure of how far results differ from expectation.
Vig: Nickname for the rake.
VP$IP: Voluntarily put $ (money) in the Pot. A statistic referring to how often a player enters a hand pre-flop, used to determine how tight or loose they are.
Wake up with a hand: To discover one has a strong starting hand when other players have already begun betting.
Walk: When all the players fold around to the Big blind.
Wet board: When the Community cards are coordinated, and strong hands are seemingly likely.
Wheel: A five-high straight. (5-4-3-2-A).
Wrap: In Omaha where one's hand and the board cards present multiple chances for a straight. For example, a 8-7-4-2 hand with a K-6-5 board.