No Limit Texas Hold’em Starter Guide

So many poker enthusiasts can watch the World Series of Poker, Poker After Dark or any other televised NL Texas Hold’em event and decide they want to be seated at one of those tables. This NL Texas Hold’em Starter Guide is intended to help novices become winning players in the least time possible.  If you combine this guide with the best carbon poker rakeback deal then you will be on your way to becoming a poker pro

Below you will find the basic rules of No Limit Texas Hold’em, along with tips to maintain a steadily growing chip stack.

Rules of NL Texas Hold’em – Betting Structure

We’ll start by defining the “No Limit” betting structure. No Limit means that there is a minimum wager, but no maximum wager. The minimum bet depends on the stakes. For instance, $2/$4 stakes have a minimum bet of $4.

Next, we’ll define the Blind Bets, also determined by the stakes. In NL Texas Hold’em, the Small Blind is equal to the low-end stakes, and the Big Blind equal tot he high-end stakes. $2/$4 would mean Small Blind $2, Big Blind $4.

The Small Blind is placed by the player left of the Dealer Button. The Big Blind is placed by the player left of the Small Blind. These are both forced bets that must be placed before any cards are dealt.

Rules of NL Texas Hold’em – The Deal

The dealer gives each player 2 cards, face down. These are the Hole Cards. Everyone may look at their own hole Cards, after which the first betting round begins. The Small Blind and Big Blind bettors have already placed bets, so the next player to the left must Call the Big Blind, Raise or Fold. Betting continues in this fashion clockwise around the table.

The Small Blind may Call or Raise by adding enough chips to his current bet to do so. If no player has Raised, the big Blind will have the option to Check since his Big Blind already matches the current bet. He may also Raise. Once all players have acted, choosing to Call or Fold, the game continues.

Note that if at any time all other players Fold, leaving a single active player, the hand is over and that player wins the entire pot. Otherwise, the game continues.

The Flop: 3 Community Cards are dealt face up in the center of the table. Community Cards are meant for all players to use in combination with their own Hole Cards to develop the best possible 5-card poker hand. Another round of betting begins, from now on starting with the player left of the dealer.

The Turn: A 4th Community Card is dealt, followed by another betting round.

The River: The 5th and final Community Card is dealt. The last betting round takes place.

The Showdown: If two or more players remain active, the Showdown takes place. All active players reveal their best 5-card hand. The strongest ranking hand wins the pot.

How To Win NL Texas Hold’em

Okay, so now you know how to play the game, but how can you win at NL Texas Hold’em? Below are a few tips that will help you along.

How To Win NL Texas Hold’em – Starting Hands
As a new NL Texas Hold’em player, the most important thing to consider is your starting hand selection. Newbies often play any hole Cards, just hoping the Flop will help them out. This is not the way to win NL Texas Hold’em. Wait for a good starting hand, conserving your chips when the cards are marginal at best. Good Texas Hold’em Starting Hands are…

Pocket Aces (Pair)
Pocket Kings
Pocket Queens
Pocket Jacks
High Suited Connectors (ex:As-Ks)
High Connectors (ex: Qs-Kh)
Pocket 6s through 10s

there is no other hand a new NL Texas Hold’em player should move on with. It is not until a player becomes extremely familiar with the game, and able to read his opponents, that instincts should take over in start hand selection.

How To Win NL Texas Hold’em – The Nuts
In NL Texas Hold’em, the “Nuts” is the best possible hand a player could have, according tot he Community Cards. For example, if the flop is 6h-Jh-2h, there are 3 Hearts showing. The best possible hand would be a Heart Flush, requiring two more Hearts in the Hole. If the Flop shows 5h-7d-8s, the Nuts are a 9-High Straight, requiring a 6 and 9 in the Hole.

Another example would be a Flop of J-4-4. Can you figure out the nuts?

With J-4-4 on the board, the Nuts would be a Full House, requiring a J and 4 in the Hole.

It is very important to know the Nuts at all times. If you have the Nuts, you can either slow play the hand to draw as many chips into the pot as possible, or make a large bet in hopes of someone calling. Slow playing is generally the most profitable way to go.

How To Win NL Texas Hold’em – Bluffing
Bluffing can be a great way to keep your chips on the rise during a long period of Folded starting hands. However, there is a time and place for Bluffing, and never, ever Bluff too often. Once you’re labeled a Bluffer, you’ll have a very difficult time Bluffing from that point on.

The best time to Bluff is from late position – on the Button, Small Blind or Big Blind – when no other player has shown confidence in their hand (no one Raised), and only one or two other players have limped in. The more competitors you have, the more likely you are to get called. Place a fairly large bet and try to scare all other players away from the pot. This is easiest to do Pre-Flop, when only the blinds are at risk.