The Basics of Poker

In a game of poker, the players are dealt five cards face down and are known as the hole cards. Other cards in the hand are called the kicker and muck. The former are high cards, while the latter are folded and burned. A player can get an overcard if his hand has a higher value than his nut, which can change during the game. The nut and the muck are the two different places in poker that a player can get overcards.


In almost every variant of poker, each player is given a set number of chips. The white chip is the smallest one, while a red chip is worth five whites. Each player subsequently buys in by placing the same number of chips into the pot. The person who buys in is said to be an active player. If a player has a higher chip value than the nut, he is a “short stack,” and if he has a low stack of chips, he is an “inside player.”

A player may have to contribute to the pot before the game is started. This is called the ante. The first player to bet is known as the “poke” player. After he has made a bet, the next player in the round is known as the “caller,” and the third player is known as the “raiser.” If the first two players bet with the same hand, that is called a bluff. The next bettor must match or beat the previous one before he can become a ‘checker’. The last raise or checker in the round ends the betting interval.