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WHY PLAY TEXAS HOLD’EM

  Because it’s exciting, that’s why.  No other poker game is as exciting, intriguing, thrilling, fast, pot-building and as easy to learn as Hold’em.  It’s the game of the future.  Every day, especially with legalized gambling and poker playing in more and more states, more players are learning casino-style Texas Hold’em.  Seven card stud players who try Hold’em become instant converts.  And it’s no wonder when you consider the advantages that Texas Hold’em has over 7-Card Stud:

It’s a Faster Game
  It’s a much faster game.  Instead of playing twenty hands per hour of stud, you can play up to forty hands per hour of Hold’em.  That 100% more hands per hour; 100% more opportunities for the winning poker player (that’s you) to win; 100% more opportunities for losing poker players (your opponents) to make more mistakes and 100% more money you can win.

There are No Exposed Cards
  There are no exposed cards in the other player’s hands for you to remember, as there are in 7-card Stud and no cards that are exposed early in the hand, and then folded, that you’ll have to remember.  The only exposed cards in the game are the community cards and they stay exposed for all to see throughout the hand.

No Exchanging of Cards
  There is no drawing or exchanging of cards as there is in 5-Card Draw.  You don’t have to expend your mental energy trying to remember how many cards your opponents drew and trying to figure out what a zero, one, two or three card draw means.  You and all the other players receive two cards at the beginning of the hand and you keep them until you either fold or there is a showdown at the end of the hand.

Betting Position
  You will be in the same betting position throughout each hand.  The betting does not move around as it does in 7-Card Stud. There will be four betting rounds each hand.  If you are first to bet at the beginning of the hand, you will bet first on each subsequent round of that hand.  More importantly, if you’re last to bet, you’ll be last for all four rounds of betting.  This is an important strategic advantage and it’s guaranteed to be yours throughout the hand.

The Pots Are Bigger in Hold’em
  The pots are much bigger in Hold’em than they are in stud or draw.  Because Hold’em is usually played ten or even eleven handed, there are more players to call the first rounds of betting to see the flop.  Because there are more players in the hand, players who have straight or flush draws are getting the correct odds to attempt to make their hands.  A player holding A♥ J♥ who gets a flop of 9♥ 6♥ 2♦ will always stay to the last card needing just one more♥.  And if he hits his flush, he’ll likely win a huge pot because as many as a half-dozen players will have put money in the pot on all four betting rounds.

You Win More Money in Hold’em
  When you make a big hand in Hold’em you usually win more of the other player’s money than you would with the same hand in stud.  If you make a full house in stud and rake in a $ 20 pot, you might have played against only one player which means that up to half of that $ 20 was yours to begin with.  You’ve won only $ 10.  but if you make the same hand in Hold’em game, you likely would have beat six players, won a $ 100 pot, of which only $ 20 was yours to begin with.  This phenomenon is attributed to the key unique feature of Hold’em which is..

Hold’em Hands are More Competitive
  The final strength of all the player’s hands will be closer in value than they are in stud or draw.  In 7-Card Stud, seven players could play all the way to the end with seven different hands ranging in strength from no pair to a straight flush.  Players with full houses will e competing for the pot against hands like one or two pair.  And we all know that’s no contest.
  You don’t have this situation in Hold’em poker.  Like Stud, a Hold’em hand consists of five of the best seven cards available to you.  But unlike stud, five of the cards you can use to make up your hand also belong to every other player in the game.  When 71% of your hand is the same as everyone else’s hand, everybody is going to be in the running.
  It is this community card concept that is the key unique feature of Hold’em.  This is what brings the final strength of all the hands closer together and make the game more competitive.  When up to ten players can play one hand of poker at the same time, and 5/7ths of all of the hands are the same, it’s real contest.

You Know What it Takes to Win
  Before the flop, a pair of Aces in the pocket is the best possible starting hand and if the game were over right there, you’d win every time.  After that, though, the strength and value of your two pocket cards is determined by the community cards on the board.  It is the cards on the board that determine what the best hand can be.  Consider the following examples of flops and their best possible hands:

  1. Q♦T♣ 7♥ 5♠ 2♣   three Queens
  2. K♣ J♦ 9♥ 6♥ 3♦    straight
  3. Q♠ 9♥ 8♠ 7♣ 2♠ flush    
  4. A♥K♠ 5♣ 4♥ A♦      full house or four of a kind.

With the board paired, the best possible hand can be either a full house or four of a kind, depending on if you can account for one of the key cards.  In this example a player can be holding A♣ A♠ to make four Aces.  If you are holding a single Ace then no one can have both Aces to make four Aces and therefore the best hand can only be a full house.  A♣ K♦ , A ♠ 5♥ and A♠ 4♣ all make full houses.  Notice though, that if you hold A♠ 4♣ (full house), another online poker player can hold A♣ with a 5 or K to make a higher full house.

     E-     T ♦ 9♦ 7♦ 5♠ 3♥  straight flush
     F-     K♣ Q♣ T♣ 9♠ 6♠    royal flush

It’s Easier to Fold in Hold’em
  If you’re drawing to a straight or flush in Hold’em and you miss, it’s pretty much automatic that you can throw your hand away without having to call on the end.  If you made a pair while trying to make your flush, you might be tempted to call on the end in a stud game.  In a Hold’em game that pair is not as good a hand when that flush card does not come on the end.

You Know When to Play or Not Play After the First Round of Betting
  In Hold’em you’re a big favorite to win the hand if you started out with the best hand.  because of the community cards, it’s just too difficult for a single opponent to outdraw you.  This is especially more true as the hand progresses and players drop out along the way.  But that’s not true in stud where you can start with the best hand and easily be outrun by almost any other hand.
  Here’s the essence of Texas Hold’em: The object of the game is to have either the best hand or a draw to the best hand after the flop.  You should fold just about all other hands after the flop.  You are just too big an underdog to continue playing and the reason you know that is that you can compare your pocket cards to the flop.  You can’t do that in stud because you can see only one of your opponent’s first three cards.  You often have to invest more money in a stud hand before you realize you have to fold.

The Jackpots are Bigger in Hold’em
  If you play poker in a casino you’ll find that there is often a bad beat jackpotThis is a pool of money that is collected by taking a small amount from every pot that reaches a certain amount, usually $ 30.  This money is set aside and is awarded in part to the player who makes an incredibly good hand (usually Aces full)  and gets it beat by an even better hand (usually four of a kind).  Because Hold’em is a faster game, more hands are played per hour than in stud, and the minimum pot size required to rake the pot for the jackpot is reached more often.  When you do hit a jackpot it will usually be bigger than if you were in a stud game and it is usually hit in less playing time than in a stud game.