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by: Dino The Greek.
Pai Gow poker is a unique casino game that has many characteristics that are different from a lot of the other casino games.The dealer gives each player and himself seven cards face down. Each player must divide his cards into two poker hands. A five card poker hand and a two card poker hand. The 5 card hand must be stronger than the two card hand.
 In other words you cannot give yourself a pair of aces in your small hand and a pair of Kings or less in the larger hand. When all players are finished making their hands, the dealer makes his. To win you must beat the dealer in both hands. To lose, you must lose both hands. A split is no action. The casino takes its cut from winning hands.

Pai Gow benefits

?    It allows you to gamble at a slower pace while actually playing instead of waiting for the next game. It?s not unusual for 3 or 4 hands in a row to end up with no winner or loser. I?d rather be gambling while relaxing, then sitting at the bar paying for my drinks doing nothing.
?    The pace in a live casino is such that there?s plenty of opportunity to sit back and look around. Even online it?s a nice pace. In games like Blackjack, a lot of hands require no thought. Every hand in Pai Gow requires that a gambler consider the options.
?    Most every hand has many ways to play it, much like Cribbage.  It?s one of the few games where a player can decide their own fate by how they play the cards rather than rely on the next card being favorable, or the ball falling in the right slot. It?s a thinking game, rather than just automatically hitting or standing like happens most of the time in blackjack.


    As I?ve pointed out there is options in how each hand is played. Let me give you an example that just happened to me a few minutes ago.

My hand: 8-8-8-7-7-4-K. I?ve got two options, keep the 3 of a kind and throw down the pair of 7?s as my two card hand, or keep the full house and throw out the K-4 as my second hand. I choose throwing in the pair of 7?s and won. If I?d kept the full house, I would have split, losing to K-6 on the small hand. It?s also possible to have lost of course doing it my way if the dealer had 3 pair for instance. They could have kept the two small pair and thrown in the high pair to beat my pair of 7?s.

It?s important to know what the dealer has to do with his cards. It?s not an option, there are dealer rules just like Blackjack that are the keys to making the right decisi

In closing the last advice I can give is to play with a clear head and take your time making your decisions. There?s nothing worse than accidentally throwing the wrong layout down, or missing a straight or a full because a two pair was staring you in the face.

© Copyright 2005 Online Poker Hangout. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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