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All-In Poker Definition

Poker Tournament and Ring Game Play: All In

by Jesse Knight
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All-In Poker
All-In - A wager of all of your chips.


Most ring games are table stakes games. This means that chips must be on the table at the start of the hand in order to be in play. Players may only lose as many chips as they have in front of the on any given hand. They may not go into their pocket for more money during the hand, nor can they remove chips from the table while they play. Because of this rule, players will often go all-in when the size of the bet they are facing is larger than the total number of chips that they have on the table. When a player goes all in, their hand is live, but they are only allowed to participate in the betting up to the point where they run out of chips. When that happens, a second pot, called a side pot is created. The all in player is not eligible to win any of the side pot, because they did not contribute towards it.

Imagine that you are playing in a No-Limit Holdem tournament, you have $10,000 in tournament chips, and you have pocket aces in the big blind. The player under the gun, whom we will call player A, goes all in for $3,000 and the player to his left, player B, reraises and goes all-in for $7,000. Of course, you immediately call. Since player A only has $3,000, he can only win $3,000 from each of the other players plus the blinds. So $9,000 plus the blinds goes into the main pot. All three players are eligible to win this pot. Player B has $4,000 more than player A. You are obligated to give him action on this money, so a second pot, called a side pot is formed. This pot contains $4,000 from you and $4,000 from player B, for a total of $8,000. Only the two of you are eligible to win this pot. Your remaining $3,000 is returned to you as your change. If there are multiple players all-in with different chip amounts, it may be necessary to create several side pots. In this situation, it is the dealers job to make sure the pots are correct, and to keep track of who is eligible to win which pots.

Usage: All-In Situation, Going All-In, I'm All-In

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