What is a bad beat in poker and how you can deal with it
Even if you are an above-average poker player with regular wins, it is inevitable that you will also incur some losses in the long run. The most annoying ones are probably those that happen when you have one of the strongest hands, but another player still beats you. This is called a bad beat, and even world-class poker players have to deal with it from time to time. As you can imagine, lady luck plays a major part in this, but if you grasp the concept, there are several things you can do to overcome it. Let's find out what a bad beat is and how to deal with it.
What does bad beat mean in poker
Remember when you watched that huge poker tournament on TV or online? When a card was dealt, you could see on the screen the odds of each player winning the hand. Every time a new card was dealt the percentages changed. When the dealer revealed the cards on the flop and the river, it was a good time for one of the players to consider that his hand was unbeatable. He could go all in just to realise that another player turned out with a better hand, even if in the beginning he thought that his hand was poor.
A famous example occurred in August 2017 at the Playground Poker Club in Montreal. During a $2/$5 no-limit hold'em game, one player had four-of-a-kind, but one of his opponents turned over a royal flush. The winner got $261,311, while his rival lost $522,622.
How can you overcome bad beats
As upsetting as it might be, first you have to come to terms with the fact that it happens to everyone. Regardless of whether you are an amateur or a professional poker player, bad beats will come. Then, you should consider folding or even taking a longer break. Once a bad beat happens, you could start playing emotionally and lose control.
Moreover, if you get angry at a bad beat, remember the times you had an unexpected win. It could be a bad beat for another player, but you did not notice it since you were on the winning end. And finally, keep in mind that it is just a game of luck. You will win and you will lose; as long as you keep a profitable bankroll and do not go overboard, a few bad beats here and there will not matter in the long run.
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