Poker: Draw Vs. Hold 'em
Compare and Contrast Essay
Comm 105
Brian Reynolds
University of Phoenix
March 20th, 2005

Poker: Draw Vs. Hold 'em
As the room fills with smoke from cigars and cigarettes, I look across the table at the last guy in the hand. I think to myself, "Why did he just raise me?" I just raised the pot $25 on two pair. The other guy re-raised the pot another $25. My heart is beating like a freight train racing down the tracks, I'm doing everything in my power to stop from sweating and I'm trying to keep my face stone cold straight as to not give myself away. I'm pretty sure at this point that this guy is trying buy the pot, but it still makes me nervous. I decide to call his raise and when the cards are turned over I realize that I had just made the right call. I won the pot and fought off his bluff.
Poker is a card game that has been around for hundreds of years. Although the origin of the game and the name itself are debatable, the game of Poker is played more than any other card game in the world. The scenario I explained took place during a game of Five Card Draw. This is a very popular rendition of Poker. Poker has evolved over the years and hence has numerous types of games that still fall under the Poker category. My favorite games are Five Card Draw and Texas Hold ‘em. Both games are similar because they derive from the original game of Poker, involves betting, and using playing cards. They also differ because of the betting, the number of cards used and the way the cards are dealt.
Five Card Draw is one of the simplest poker games you can play. Each player antes a predetermined amount of money. Then each player is dealt five cards. The players look at their cards and determine if they want to continue to play. If the player chooses to continue, they will bet again. The players will then draw new cards. Players determine the number of cards they want to draw based on the cards in their hands. The object is to make the best five-card Poker hand. After the remaining players draw their new cards, there is one more round of betting. After the betting is complete, the remaining players turn over their cards and the dealer determines the best hand. The best hand then wins the pot, or the total amount of money bet by all players in the hand.
Texas Hold ‘em however, is a more complex game. In the game of Texas Hold ‘em each player receives two cards. After the cards are received a round of betting ensues. After the betting is complete, three cards are dealt face up in the middle of the table. These cards are known as community cards because each player will use these cards to try and make the best Poker hand. Another round of betting occurs after the three cards are dealt. Then a fourth community card is dealt and another round of betting takes place. Finally a fifth community card is dealt and again a round of betting takes place. Once the betting is complete the players that remain in the hand will turn their two cards over and combine them with the community cards. The player with the best five cards will win the pot.
The difference between these games is strategy. Five-card draw is a relatively easy game to learn and therefore is easy to play. Because there only five cards used and two rounds of betting it is easier to figure what the opposition maybe holding in their hands so you can determine if your hand is the winner. Texas Hold ‘em uses seven cards and four rounds of betting. This makes it difficult to find what the other players may be holding. The bluff strategy is much more effective in Texas Hold ‘em. A bluff is when a player tries to bet big with a mediocre hand to win the pot. In order to be good at Texas Hold ‘em players need to figure out when other players are bluffing. This is the key to becoming a successful Texas Hold ‘em player. As Doyle Brunson, a world renowned Poker player especially known for his skill at Texas Hold ‘em, says "One of the great things about Hold ‘em is that there are so many different combinations of hands and different things you can do in different situations. It's a very complex game. You're forced to a lot of guessing. So is your opponent." Brunson (1978)
Draw Poker and Texas Hold ‘em are only two variations of Poker. There are numerous games to play and new ones being invented on a regular basis. Although strict gambling laws now regulate poker, it consistently proves to be a major sporting event. The World Series of Poker is held every year in Las Vegas. This event draws upwards of 2,500 participants and almost as many spectators. The prize money for this event rivals that of Golf and most professional athletes salaries. As long as there is money to be won there will always be a game to play. Poker is here to stay and will continue to grow and flourish just like many other pastimes.
Brunson, D. (1978). No Limit Hold 'em The Cadillac of Pker games. In (Ed.), Doyle Brunson's Super System A Course in POwer Poker (3rd ed., Rev., p. 420). New York: Cordoza .

Brunson, D (1978). Doyle Brunson's Super System, A Course in Power Poker (3rd Editon). New York, Cordoza

(2005, March). World Series of Poker History. [Online] Available:

Poker 8.5 of 10 on the basis of 2569 Review.