The Deal

Initial Two Cards

Each player is dealt two cards face down in a clock wise motion 1 to each player then the second to each player starting with the small blind player and ending at the dealer or dealer button player. These cards are called the pocket cards. Do not show these cards to any other player since this constitutes your entire private hand.

Starting with the player to the immediate left of the big blind, and moving clockwise, each player has the option of either folding, (mucking your hand), calling (keeping your hand and putting the correct amount of money in the pot) or raising, increasing the bet by an amount of at least as much as the previous bet.

If no one has raised by the time the action comes back to the small blind, he can either fold, call the remainder of the big blind bet, or raise at least the amount of the big blind. For example, in a $1-$4 - $8-$8 game, a raise of $1 is not allowed because all raises in poker must be for at least the amount of the previous bet. In a structured game ($3-$6, $5-$10 ) the raise must be the small-tiered amount. Since the blinds had to put their money in the pot before they saw their hands, they have the option of raising themselves.

If no one has raised by the time the action gets back to the big blind, he then has an option to raise. The dealer will ask him, "Option"? and the big blind has to answer with either "Check," ("I bet nothing") or "I raise". The raise is the same as the lower tier bet.