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Beginning The Tournament The Flop

By: TOO2COO @ 06:27 (EST) / 606 / Comment ( 0 )

Beginning The Tournament The Flop

The flop is defined as three community cards that are turned face up after the first round of betting. Players will use the two unique cards they hold combined with any or all of the flop cards to begin forming a winning combination of cards for a 5-card hand.

The word, 'flop' can also be used as a verb. If you are holding a pair in the hole as your unique cards, and one of the 3 community cards is one of your pair, you have then 'flopped' a set.

When playing in a no limit Texas Hold?em tournament, each player will receive 2 cards that are called hole cards. After the first round of betting, which is referred to as pre flop, the second round is ready to commence. The dealer will show the flop. Everyone who is still in the hand after the pre flop betting round will consider how these 3 cards have helped or not helped them make a good hand.

Then, there is another round of betting. Each player is in essence betting against the other players that his cards, combined with the 3 flop cards, is better than anyone else's cards at the table.

The flop is the most significant part of the hand. After the flop the players have now seen what will represent 71% of the total cards seen (5 out of 7 cards). The player who has paid the price to see the flop will now have to make a decision whether he should continue to play.

There are many things to think about when playing the flop.
• What is your position relative to the button (how many players to act after you)?
• Who are your adversaries (who is in the pot and what is their style of play)?
• How many callers are there and what are their positions relative to you and to the button?
• Who raised (if there were a raise)?
• How much money is in the pot?
• How much of your stack will it cost to play?
• How strong is your hand (potentially, according to the flop, do you have the nuts or a draw to the nuts with many outs)?
• What is your chip stack compared to the other players in the hand?
• What hand do you put the other players on?
• What hand do you think the other players put you on?

Reading the Board
The board is made up of 5 community cards placed in the middle of the table. The 3 parts of the board include the flop (first three cards), the turn (the fourth card) and the river (the fifth card).
After the first round of betting, the remaining players in the pot will have the opportunity to see the flop. At this point these players will have the next round of betting based on the hand they each can make with their two hole cards combined with the 3 flop cards.

With the flop, you receive your first big piece of information. As said before, when the flop hits the board, everyone has now seen 71% of what could be their hand. Developing a quick compilation of the possible hands that can be made by looking at the board is imperative when playing no limit Hold'em (just as it is in any flop games such as any Omaha games or limit Hold'em). A player will first look at the board and figure out what the highest 2-3 possible hands are. He then will need to know how his two hole cards combine with the board to make a hand. Either the board made a good hand or it didn't, or it provided an excellent draw for the best hand.

After learning how to read a board, it is suggested that you take a deck of cards and deal out flop after flop. Practice your ability to call out the best 4 hands. Continue by finishing out the board by placing a turn card, and then a river card. Each time, practice your ability to call out the best 4 hands. Learn to do this as second nature. After you have done this to the point that it is an automatic reflex, then deal yourself two cards and determine if you have a hand or not. Practice this until you can do it in your sleep.

May the Felt stay soft, and the Chips Pile High


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