What is a bad beat in poker?

How to cope with bad beat

One way or the other, all poker players face with such a phenomenon as bad beat. If any of you ever wonder “What is a bad beat in poker?” then we will discuss this concept in details.

Bad beat is considered a situation in which the player with a strong combination loses to his opponent with even stronger hand. But in so doing, the opponent’s stronger hand initially had a little chance of winning (5-10%, i.e. 2-4 outs).

This is extremely unpleasant, as you are able to lose all your chips and leave the game just because you were sure that you had almost won the hand.

Bad beat example

You have pocket aces that means the best starting hand. There is only one opponent in the pot with a pair of nines. A-Q-9 are dealt on the flop and your opponent goes all-in. You decide to call because you have the best possible hand. However, nine appears on the turn and you don't get your ace on the river. As a result, you lost to four of a kind combination.

Certainly, it is possible to lose with any combination (apart from royal flush) and there are enough poker bad beat stories that stick in memory. Even famous professional players encounter bad beat situations and the video below confirm this:

Bad beats are accompanied by losing huge pots and leaving the tournament. Moreover, a stressful situation after the bad beat can even provoke tilt.

How to cope with bad beat

First of all, you should realize that bad beats are much more common in online tournaments than in the live poker games in casino or at home.

If you learn to stay calm after bad beat situations, you will get an excellent advantage over others who are not able to do this. The proper reaction will prevent you from losing big sums and help to win your rivals’ money.    

If you have got through bad beat, it is recommended to do the following:

  • Stay in a good mood despite defeat;
  • Aggression is not an option;
  • Make notes about the players in order to use the acquired knowledge in future.

Bad beats online

In online poker rooms, bad beats often lead to the accusations of poker room that its random number generator was tampered. However, the bad beats also took place in the live games. Many poker rooms provide statistics to demonstrate the randomness of generated hands.

Statistically, facing with a bad beat in online poker is more likely, since the player is able to play much more hands per hour than at the real game table. Moreover, the players can play at the several cash tables or in several tournaments simultaneously, which also increases the frequency of hands. Mathematically, the bad beats are inevitable.

Bad beat jackpot

Some poker rooms can pay bad beat jackpot if a very strong hand lost to a stronger hand of another player. However, these poker rooms apply special requirements to the strength of a losing hand for a player to receive a bad beat payout. For example, the bad beat jackpot odds imply the possession of a good holing, such as four of a kind or better in order to pretend to jackpot.

Bad beats are extremely important for poker ecosystem. Without them, the weak players would be much less likely to challenge strong players. As a result, all poker action would stall. It is worth noting that a factor of luck is exactly what makes the players to get back in the game.

Surely, when playing poker, we cannot control the factor of luck. However, this is an aspect that makes poker so interesting and fun. Just remember, bad beat is a slight unpleasantness that sometimes happens in our life.

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