Texas Hold Em

Updated 2007-11-05 20:48


This page helps you memorize basic Texas Hold 'em rules, and the unofficial names of hands.

Basic Rules

Here are the basic things to remember, regarding the rules of Texas hold 'em.


Question Answer
Cards dealt to each person?2
Cards displayed on table?5
First 3 cards displayedflop
4th card displayedturn (aka 4th street)
5th card displayedriver (aka 5th street)


Question Answer
What is a blind?chips 2 people left of dealer must pay before deal
Who has the small blind?person left of dealer
Who has the big blind?person 2 seats left of dealer
How much is the big blind?twice the small blind
Who plays first?- person left of dealer - or, if before the flop, person left of big blind

Game Play

Here are some important points regarding game play.


Question Answer
Heads-upwhen only 2 people remain (head-to-head)
When only 2 people remain, the dealer is...small blind
Minimum bet/raiseamount of big blind
What does tapping on the table mean?check
Number of possible starting hands169 (13 x 13)


Question Answer
Checkyou don't bet (no one else has bet)
Callyou pay enough to meet the bet (or raise)
Raiseyou bet more (someone else has bet already)
Betyou put down some chips (no one else has bet)
Foldyou throw in your cards (someone else has bet)

Hand Nick Names

Here are the nick names of the more well-known hands.


A A- Bullets - Rockets
K K- King Kong - Ace Magnets
Q Q- Siegfried & Roy - The Hilton Sisters
2 2- Ducks (2's resemble ducks) - Swans
A K- Big Slick - Anna Kournikova (nice to look at, seldom wins)
A Q- Big Chick - Mrs Slick
A 8- Dead Man's Hand (Wild Bill Hickock had a similar hand when he was shot)


A J- Ajax - Apple Jacks
A 2- Little Slick - Duck Hunter (bullet and duck)
K Q- Marriage - Royalty
8 8- Snowmen
K 9- Canine - Dog
9 5- Dolly Parton (9 to 5)
3 3- Crabs (3's resemble crabs) - Crab legs - Larry Bird

More Hands


A 10- Bookends (possibility of a 10 J Q K A straight) - Corners
K 3- King Crab
Q J- Oedipus - Maverick
Q 9- Quinine - The Tonic
J J- Fishhooks
J 5- Jackson Five - Motown
10 10- Dimes - Boxcars


10 4- Good Buddy - Over and Out
10 2- Doyle Brunson
9 9- Wayne Gretzky - Phil Hellmuth
7 2- Beer Hand (bad hand, good time to get a drink) - The Hammer
5 5- Speed Limit - Nickels
5 2- Bomber
3 2- Michael Jordan(he wore the number 23)

More Hands 2

K J- Kojack
7 7- Hockey Sticks
6 6- Route 66
4 4- Sailboats - Magnum
J 4- Flat Tires(what's a jack for?)
5 7- Ketchup

Approximate Odds Pre-flop

A few quick tricks to calculate approximate odds in a showdown. A showdown means that there is no more betting and hence, no chance of folding - only the probability that your hand wins at the end.


Question Answer
two under-cards vs two over-cards33% vs 67%
any two over-cards vs a pair50% vs 50%
staggered cards45% vs 55%
any one over-card vs a pair25% vs 75%
pair vs any higher pair20% vs 80%
if your cards are suitedadd ~5%


Question Answer
7 2 vs AK33% vs 67%
2 2 vs AK50% vs 50%
9 J vs T Q45% vs 55%
68 vs 7725% vs 75%
KK vs AA20% vs 80%
A7 vs AK25% vs 75%

Approximate Odds Post-Flop Given #outs

A couple of tricks for approximate odds that you will win given #outs. Two formulas if you are on the flop or turn; personally, I don't bother to remember the -4 or the +2, it is approximate anyway.


Question Answer
% from flop(#outs x 4 ) - 4
% from turn(#outs x 2 ) + 2
a flush draw has9 outs
an open-ended straight draw has8 outs
a gut-shot straight draw has4 outs
a straight draw and flush draw have15 outs
two over cards have6 outs

See also

Poker Hands - pair, 2 pair, etc.
the question has come up at Chase whether we should continue with it or go back to - Texas Hold Em Odds - odds for the flop and turn

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