Poker is a people game that is played with cards. This is a common saying among the gaming community and is known as the skill part that is undeniably linked to poker. This is based on the fact that the best cards don’t always win. You bet against another person and not against the house as in a regular casino game.
But, before diving into the tables, you must know the basics. Poker isn’t a complicated game, but there are a set of rules that you should know. In this article, we’ll discuss community cards and streets in the most famous poker variant: Texas Hold ’em.
Texas Hold ’em is a poker game of 5 cards. All players have two cards (which are private), and, in the center of the table, five community cards are drawn.
The goal of the game is to form the best possible combination of five cards. To do this, the action is divided into four betting rounds. So, where does the term “street” came from? Although this term is usually associated with Stud Poker, players usually refer to the turn as the “fourth street” and the “river” as the fifth street.
Let’s take a look at each round of betting and streets in detail.
Two players must post mandatory bets before any card is dealt. Those are called the small blind and the big blind.
After this, each player is dealt with two-hole cards. The first betting round occurs according to the predefined stakes and rules. If the game is No-Limit Texas Hold ’em, a player can go all-in at any time.
All remaining players in the hand will see the first three community cards or the “flop.” All three are dealt at once, making it a crucial moment in any poker hand, because this is where the most public information is given (60% of public cards are dealt here).
Remember that if you are playing live poker, the dealer will be trained to do it in the most random way possible, and online, the most trusted sites have a certified Random Number Generator to make the shuffling and dealing process flawless.
The second betting round occurs on the flop, and after all bets have been settled, the fourth card is dealt.
The fourth card or street is called “turn.” With this, 80% of community cards will now be drawn. Usually, just a few players will remain in a normal hand. The process here is the same after the card is upside down in the center of the table, another betting round occurs, and only the players who pay the bets will remain in the hand. The only difference is that only one hand is drawn instead of three.
The last card or street is the “river.” There are many legends about this card because many “bad beats” happen here, but you should know that there is nothing special about it, with one change: since this is the last betting round, it will define the winner in the hand in two ways:
- All players fold a bet, in which case the bettor will win the hand and have the option not to show his cards (muck);
- All players check, or at least two players call a bet. In this case, all hole cards are matched against each other, and the best combination of five cards will win the pot.
Those are all the secrets behind community cards, betting rounds, and streets in poker. Sure, you must also learn hand values and many other concepts, but a journey always begins with the first step.