Dead Button rule – When a player is busted out of the game and would have been either the button or one of the blinds on his next turn this rule comes into play, as appropriate. OK [deep breath], here goes:
1. Eliminated Player would have been on the button: the button is moved to the eliminated player’s vacant position and a SB and BB are posted as normal by the players to the immediate left of the button. The button is ‘dead’ because obviously it can play no part in the hand and the player to the right of the button (In other words the button from the previous round) retains the advantage of acting last in subsequent rounds of betting.
2. Eliminated Player would have been on the SB: no Small Blind is posted. The player to the left of the eliminated players position posts the Big Blind as normal and the player on the button acts last as normal. Next hand the dealer button moves to the eliminated player’s vacant position and both blinds are posted as usual, with the Button from the previous hand retaining the advantage of acting last in subsequent rounds of betting.
3. Eliminated Player would have been on the BB: no Big Blind is posted that hand . SB posted as normal to the player to the right of the eliminated player’s vacant position. The player to the left of the eliminated players position MUST however make at least the minimum bet to remain in the hand (in other words twice the SB). The player on the button acts last as normal. Next hand no SB is posted but the player to the left of the eliminated player’s vacant position posts the BB as normal. SB from the previous hand is on the Button. NEXT hand the button moves to the eliminated player’s vacant position as in  above.
4. Eliminated Player would NEITHER have been the button OR a blind: The button moves clockwise to the next player and the blinds are posted as normal.
Put simply, no player shall receive the button (and therefore the advantage of acting last) without first having posted the SB and the BB in that rotation, but NO player is expected to pay more than one SB and BB in any single rotation. Whatever happens, the button continues its inexorable journey round the table and players take their turns with posting the blinds accordingly. Are we all clears on that now? Then let us move on, to…
Dead Man's Hand – Normally taken to mean the generic hand ‘Aces and Eights’, this is a reference to the poker hand that legendary lawman and poker player ‘Wild Bill’ Hicock was holding when Jack McCall shot him in the back at The Birdcage Theatre in Tombstone. The specific hand held by Hicock was actually the Ace and Eight of Clubs, the Ace and Eight of spades, and the Nine of Diamonds. Bloody mine of information, me, mine of information.
Dead Money – If you have contributed to a pot and subsequently fold your hand then your chips are said to be ‘dead money’ because you are unable to win anything. Also used when referring to an inexperienced player (or fish) who has little chance of winning. Example – “Dave said he was definitely coming tonight, so at least there’ll be some dead money in the game.”
Dealer – In a casino this is the person responsible for handling the cards, moving chips to the winner, and monitoring the game. It's also the person who occasionally mucks your winning hand by mistake, awards the pot to the wrong person and never smiles whenever they announce ‘Time’ and proceed to steal money from everyone seated to stash in the drop-box. In a home game, another name for the dealer is Andy T :o)
Dealer Button – Also referred to simply as the button, a puck or a buck, this is typically a distinctive white acrylic disc not unlike a large Trebor extra-strong mint. It should not, however, be sucked. In most casinos and card rooms the players themselves do not generally deal the cards, because a dealer tends to do a better job. Where this is the case the button is moved clockwise from player to player at the conclusion of every hand, to denote who would theoretically be the dealer in that hand. Except in the pre-flop round, the player who is on the button is last to act in any round of betting, which is a distinct advantage as you get to see what everyone else does before deciding what to do yourself. The reason the button rotates is so that every player in the game has the opportunity to enjoy this advantage. When talking about table position one normally refers to the player 'on' the button - the 'denoted' dealer for that hand - simply as 'the button', especially when discussing a hand. Example: "Hang on, UTG raised, it's folded round to the button. Button re-raised and the Small Blind cold called?. Bugger that for a lark, I'm folding."
Dealer Position – If you are in this position you are the last to act in any given betting round, or on the button. An advantageous position when playing Holdem because you get to see what everyone does before deciding what to do yourself. Ooh, déjà vu.
Dealer's Choice - In home games, this is a rule that permits the dealer to name which poker game is going to be played that hand. Often limited to selecting from a list provided such as Anaconda, Crazy Pineapple, Razz, Irish, Deuce to Seven Triple Draw et cetera.
Declare - In hi-lo games such as 7-card stud or OH8, this is the action of declaring one's hand as high, low or both ways (usually done with 0-2 chips in your hand). You normally only find this played in home games, as casinos tend to play 'cards speak'. Less bloodshed all round that way. Typically no chips = low, one chip = high and two chips = both low AND high.
Deep Stack Poker – This is generally a feature of big buy-in tournaments or those tourneys with exceptionally large fields and therefore a large number of chips in play. Playing deep stack poker requires a different mindset to short stack poker, especially if the size of the antes and/or blinds is small relative to players’ stack sizes. Good examples of deep stack poker tournaments are the Borgata Open (a 3-4 day event with a $10K buy-in and blinds starting at 25/50 with starting chips of T25,000), the WPT final held annually at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, and of course our very own Beer Hand Open held in sunny SE1.
Deuces - Poker lingo for twos. See also ducks.
Deuce to Seven – or Triple Draw as it is also known, a popular form of draw poker in which players can discard and draw an unlimited number of cards three times in an effort to make the best possible low hand without forming a straight. Aces are high, so a 2-3-4-5-7 is the nuts.
Dog - A shortened version of underdog. Most typically heard in games like Omaha or OH8 where one hand (such as a made straight) may be up against a drawing hand with a better straight wrap and outs to a flush/boat.
Dolly Parton - A big pair. Boom! Boom! Actually, this is a Hold' Em starting hand comprising a 9 and a 5. Nine to five? Dolly Parton? Geddit? No? Jee-sus.
Dominated Hand - Nothing to do with whips, feathers, handcuffs or gimp-masks. A dominated hand is simply one that is similar to another hand but has a lower kicker, and will therefore generally lose to a more typical hand that people are likely to play For instance, A7 is "dominated" by AK. With the exception of strange flops (e.g. 7-7-x, A-7-x, whatever), it will almost always lose to AK. Take Mark Y's advice and only play wired Aces, and even throw them away in EP.
Donate – if you are one of the weaker players at the table and are steadily losing money to the better players you are said to be ‘donating’, because you are, in effect, just giving your money away, just as you would if you were donating your cash to your favourite charity. It's not well known that I am, in fact, am a registered charity myself, and all such donations are very gratefully received.
Door card - The first of a players up-cards (or ‘exposed’ cards) in any stud game.
Double Belly Buster - also known as a Double Gutshot. The Blue Plate Special at 'The Coffee Cup' in North Pole Road (£4.50 including free coffee and toast). Can also refer to a two-way inside straight draw. For example - the board reads 6-8-Q and you hold 9-10. Ignoring flush possibilities, you could make your hand with a 7 or a J, giving you 8 outs, so similar odds to an OESD (open-ended straight draw).
Down – as in “How much are you down?” To be down is to be losing, and obviously applies to ring (cash) games rather than tournaments. Also known as being deep. A down is also the name for the shift that a dealer works in a card room.
Down Cards – Your down cards are your hole cards, or the face-down cards that only you can see.
Down to the felt – To be totally out of money, stony broke, potless. It’s not always quite so literal though – very often it means you are just extremely short-stacked.
Doyle Brunson - A Hold' Em starting hand comprising a Ten and a Two, so named because the iconic Texas Dolly (The Grandfather of Poker, as VVP might say) won the World Series of Poker two years in a row on the final hand with those exact cards, in 1976 and 1977 to be exact. Before you ask, he was in the blinds…
Draw – as in ”You’re on a draw, Mike?” (or ‘only donkeys draw’, if you prefer) - in community card games when you are drawing to a hand it usually means you are behind and are hoping to improve or make your hand with the community cards that are yet to appear on the board. For example if you have Jd-Ad on a board of Qd-Td-8c, you are drawing to a nine or an King on the Turn or River to make you the nut straight (a double belly buster), or any diamond for a flush, plus you could also pair your Ace for a potential winner, so you potentially have 18 outs twice, although only one of the remaining nine diamonds would give you the nuts.
Draw Poker – Whilst community card games seem to be all the rage these days, draw poker (as in 5-card draw) used to predominate card games prior to the American civil war. Draw games are characterized by players being dealt (usually five) cards face down and then having the opportunity to discard and replace some or all of their original cards in order to make their hand. This is the ‘drawing’ aspect of the game – you are drawing (or taking) cards from the deck in the hope that you will improve and be able to show down the best poker hand and win the pot. Nowadays draw games are virtually dead, with the possible exception of Deuce to Seven Triple Draw.
Drawing Dead – When you are drawing dead it means you have an active hand that will lose regardless of what the next card(s) drawn are. Example: UTG makes a SPFR and you re-raise from the Button with Td-Tc. BB makes a long dwell up before smooth calling and UTG thinks for a while and follows suit. The flop comes Ts, Qh, Jh, giving you bottom set on a scary-looking board. You make a pot-sized bet, hoping to take it down there, but both opponents flat-call. You can’t tell if they’re trapping or drawing. The Turn comes a fairly harmless-looking 4d so you make what you hope will look like a value bet, and again both opponents flat call. You have now committed over half your stack. Do you check-fold the River? Do you push, hoping to push out any drawing hands? If someone has a made straight of course, you’re playing into their hands, but if this is the case you could still pair the board to make a boat, or even quads. You decide to push. Both opponents call. One holds Kh, Ah for the broadway straight and nut flush draw, and another opponent holds Qd, Qs, for top trips. If the board pairs you will lose to the higher boat, and even if you catch the miracle case Ten, this will lose to your opponent’s winning Royal – you’re drawing dead. This is, of course, not a good spot for you to be in. The quads example is a bit extreme but you get the idea. A more common situation might be when you have A-K and have caught top two pair on a board of A-K-7-2. All the money goes in and your opponent flips over A-A. Ouch.
Drawing Hand – a drawing hand is one that needs additional help from the board in order to improve, such as a straight draw or a flush draw. Drawing hands are generally best played in Late Position where you can see how many other active players are in the hand to determine whether the pot is giving you the correct odds to pursue your hand. Example: you hold Ah-Th on the Button with one MP limper and make it 150 to go. Both blinds call as does the limper and 4 of you see a flop of Qh, Jh, 6c. SB leads out for 300. BB folds, MP calls. In this spot you are getting great odds to draw to your hand. You are being asked to call 300 to potentially win 1200, or odds of 4:1. Any King gives you the Broadway straight and any heart gives you the Ace-high flush. That’s 12 outs to the nuts from the remaining 47 cards (this ignoring the fact that any Ace may well be a winner), or roughly 3:1 on the next card. With two cards to come (assuming you get to see them both) you’re slightly less than even money to make your hand by The River, so this is any easy call for your draw. As no-one is showing any real strength an alternative might even be to make a semi-bluff.
Draw Out - To catch a card with a hand that improves your situation from a losing hand to a winning hand, especially when you beat someone holding a hand that was well ahead at the time. Quite often also known as Bad Beat. Example: Omaha8, Pot Limit. You have raised from the SB with Ah, Ac, 2h, 3c (it’s a monster!) and everyone comes along for the ride to see a flop of Jh, 9h, As. You bet pot and pick up one caller. The Turn is a 6c, and again you make a PSB and are called. The River is the Ts, and now your opponent bets into you. You figure you’re beat, but your opponent has already shown he is a donkey so you make the crying call, because you actually want to see what he was chasing you down with. He flips up 2h, Js, 8c, 7h. An OESD and crappy low and flush draws and he drew out on you to hit his gutshot to scoop with the idiot end. Now that’s just wrong.
Drop – can mean a few things. To fold, or let go of a hand (e.g. “I led out with A-K on a board of K-Q-T. Second player re-raises and a third moves All In right behind him, so I drop the hand pretty much straight away”). Can also mean to lose money (“I got hit my some nightmare outdraws, I must have dropped $200 in half an hour!”)
Drop out – what I did in the 6th form. As a poker term, however, this can mean to get out of a hand (fold) when action comes to you, or to quit a particular game (like a ring game) altogether, either because you are running badly or because the other players at the table are just too good for you, which is par for the course at Acton.
Ducks - A pair of Twos. Vincent's favourite. Quack bloody quack.
- "Behold the power of the Beer Hand!" -