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Poker Dictionary (106) > Bad Beat

Online Poker and 'Bad Beats'

'Bad Beats' are part of the game whether you play online poker or live games. These bad beats are what every poker player likes to tell stories about in the same way that a fisherman always has stories of the one that got away.

A bad beat is where a player enters a hand as the favorite and ends up losing as a result of their opponent catching cards to make a better hand. Bad beats are part of the game, and something that gives poker the extreme highs and lows. This volatility is one of the reasons that poker is such an emotional game..

Ultimately, there is an element of luck in any hand. As much as we can control what cards we play - ultimately it is up to lady luck how the cards fall.

For example, two players go all in, one turns over AA and the other turns KK. the flop comes A-5-9 rainbow. From here the trip A's look almost a certain winner. The turn comes K followed by another K on the river, making quad kings. Now this example is a more extreme but shows that all you can do is get your money in with the best of it and hope cards don't wreck the party. Sometimes cards will hold up, others times they won't. The nature of the game.

What's striking about the mentality and memory of a poker player is that they have selective memory remembering only the bad beats and not all the times when their hands hold up or indeed where they got lucky to beat an opponent - players almost expect this to happen. I guess that's the nature of the beast. It's hard to swallow losing a big hand when you played the hand perfectly and trapped your opponent for all his stack.

Not much more we can do than to suck it up and move on.

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