Positions in Poker

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In Poker, there are four named positions at the table. The Dealer: where the dealer button sits and last person to act, Early position: Where the blinds are as well as 2 places after, Late Position: 2 of the seats to the right of the button, and Middle Position: all other positions at the table.

The dealer position, also known as On The Button and Last to Act, is the best position possible at the table as you are able to see everyone else’s actions (except for the blinds) before the flop, and then after the flop see everyone’s actions before you make a decision. Because of this knowledge, it is expected that the dealer will play more aggressive than any other spot – so keep this in mind when you are thinking about bluffing in this position.

Early position is made up of 4 spots: Small Blind, Big Blind, Under The Gun (UTG), Under The Gun Plus One (UTG+1).

These are the 4 positions to the left of the dealer. These spots are generally the least aggressive at the table, as they have the smallest amount of information and will take the most risk with their chips if they choose to bet/raise. For the most part, it is best to only play with strong hands in Early Position, so you do not catch yourself in a position to unnecessarily risk money. Early position does however, provide you with the ability to bluff better. It isn’t expected that a player in early position is going to bluff, therefore you can take this risk in a better position here.

Middle Positions are exactly that, all middle positions at the table. In middle position, you are able to sit in a neutral spot, therefore you can play with some flexibility without giving away much information. If the action has folded to you preflop, it is always best to open with a raise from Middle Position if you plan on playing your hand. This way, you have the ability to control the action at the table, and can hide your hand (if it isn’t as strong as a raise would indicate).

Late Position, 2 seats to the right of the dealer (known as Cutoff and Cutoff +1) are the best possible positions at the table. It is easy to gather information on the players who have already acted, and because you are not on the Dealer Button, it isn’t expected that you will be so aggressive.

Though the concept is advanced, the basics of poker positioning is pretty easy to keep track of!

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