Author Topic: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?  (Read 2917 times)

MikeB

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Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« on: January 26, 2012, 10:52:30 AM »
The TDA received the following very interesting showdown case. How would you rule in this situation and why? Keep in mind that all betting action has been completed and the players are at showdown (if that makes a difference in your decision).

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Message Body:
I wanted to ask you about how to rule on this hand.  Consider this example:

Flop comes down 7c6h3h. SB sitting in the 8 seat bets, BB calls, everyone else folds. Turn is 8h. SB bets, BB raises, SB moves all-in, BB calls and announces "Straight" and reveals his hand 54c. River is Kh, SB throws away his hand face-down and it lands in front of the 5 seat. Before the cards are collected, someone not in the hand says, "Wow, no heart?" SB says, "Uh, wait..." picks up his cards to reveal 7h6s for a flush.

I ruled SB's hand live at the time and awarded him the pot, but now I believe I made the wrong ruling based on the rule above.  I originally ruled SB's hand was live, because it was "clearly identifiable."  However, after having consulted Robert's Rules, Chapter 3 "Dead Hands", Paragraph 2, I think the hand should be dead, because the entire rule suggests that ONLY when a hand is folded "as a result of false information given to the player" AND is "clearly identifiable" can a mucked hand be retrieved.  This seems consistent with the "best interest of the game", because the player was deceived. In the scenario above, I think the hand should be dead, because SB folded voluntarily based on accurate information: the BB had a straight.

So which ruling is correct according to the TDA rules?

Thanks for your help,
Name withheld.
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Nick C

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2012, 12:53:17 PM »
MikeB,

 This is interesting because the correct answer depends on whether it is a tournament or a cash game? In a tournament, because a player was all-in, the hand could not be mucked. If it was a cash game, the player was very lucky that the dealer failed to do his job (kill the discarded hand).
 In any event, the fact that the pot was awarded to the winning hand makes the decision to rule the hand "live" the right call.

K-Lo

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2012, 03:50:36 PM »
This seems very similar to the situation we discussed in this previous thread, except that some fault was also attributable to the Dealer:

http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?topic=561.0

However, it remains that in tournaments, when players are all-in, the cards must be tabled and the winning hand cannot be killed.  So I think the ruling originally made was correct, assuming this was in a tournament.  In general, we do want to see that the hands that would rightfully win the pot, win.


For me, the more interesting related question is with regard to situations where we are at showdown, but the players are NOT all-in.  In that case, there is (currently) no rule that requires both hands to be tabled (and Nick C has been asking "why the discrepancy" for quite a long time without receiving a satisfactory answer  ;) , but I digress ).  So if a player voluntarily mucks his hand that he has not himself tabled in a timely manner, should the hand be dead even though they are still clearly identifiable and for whatever reason the contents of the hand are revealed later?  

I personally feel that a player's folding motion, even at showdown, should be binding and the cards should NOT be live unless the TD has good reason to use his discretion to rule them live (e.g. suspicion of chip dumping, dealer error, incorrect info given by player, etc.).  This is because I think the player is always obligated to protect his own hand (which includes correctly reading and not voluntarily folding a winning hand).  Also, leaving these folded hands dead by default until they are mucked by the Dealer (and yes, this needs to be done more quickly) also gives players the incentive to table their hands without delay -- they can then benefit from Rule 15 in that a properly tabled hand cannot be killed.  However, while I believe that my position that a voluntarily folded hand that has not been properly tabled should be dead by default is more consistent with RROP Dead Hands #2, I believe I am in the minority as many TDs here would rule that cards are always live no matter what until they have been actually mucked by the Dealer.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 04:03:08 PM by K-Lo »

Stuart Murray

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2012, 03:56:41 PM »
If a tournament, the hand should be tabled and the best hand will win the pot. If it's cash, move on to next hand and keep the mucked hand face down.

Regards
Stu
Stuart Murray
The Nuts Poker League
South Scotland &
National Tournament Director

Spence

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2012, 05:59:58 PM »
I agree with most of the stuff that has been said already. There is only 1 further point I'd like to add. If another player at the table doesn't make reference to the fact that the board came up with 4 hearts or whatever it may be. What if the player pushes their hand forward then realizes and takes it back and opens it? I would still rule the hand live in this circumstance. I feel that the best hand should win whenever possible. If the player reaches for it himself without the aid or information from any other source isn't in the best interest of the game to allow that hand to play live?
It boils down to this. Tournament, we are all on the same page(for once) which I am thankful for. Cash game, does it matter? We are the TDA, but for the sake of helping out one another I say in the circumstance described the hand is dead. My best reasoning would be under the one player to a hand. New information presented after the muck would not let the player have a right to his hand. Too bad so sad.  ;D

DCJ001

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2012, 09:46:45 PM »
Some people in this thread have expressed uncertainty about whether this example occurred in a cash game or in a tournament. The question was posted in the category of "Poker Tournament Rules."

Nick C

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2012, 10:53:41 PM »
There is someone that just responded on this thread that is wasting the time of anyone who reads his/her comments! I will no longer respond to anything written by this member. Anyone who does not have enough class to put their name or face to any of their sarcastic, offensive, and useless remarks is not worth my time.

 Tournament Director? I doubt it. 

K-Lo

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2012, 11:02:55 AM »
Some people in this thread have expressed uncertainty about whether this example occurred in a cash game or in a tournament. The question was posted in the category of "Poker Tournament Rules."

I had some doubt because the question posed indicated that "SB throws away his hand face-down"...  it seemed a bit strange for the question to have been worded this way if the hand was already tabled face-up for all to see, which would have (or at least should have) been the case in an all-in situation in a tournament.

MikeB

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Re: Is this hand dead or alive at showdown?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2012, 01:24:46 PM »
Great comments everyone. In my zeal to discuss the subject of when (if ever) cards are dead at showdown I completely missed the OP's indication that the SB is all-in. Of course that alone requires that all hands reaching this showdown be shown.

As to why all-in hands must be shown in an all-in, this goes to the basic premise that at every showdown (all-in or not) the ideal scenario is that all hands be shown. We tolerate players mucking their hands face down when there is not a tournament seat on the line. However in an all-in situation there is more than the pot at stake, there is also a tournament seat at stake. That affects all players in the tournament. The TDA rules make absolutely sure that a player doesn't remain in the tournament who went all-in with a losing hand, and conversely makes sure that a player doesn't endure the "ultimate loss" of his/her tournament seat without having their cards read. In this sense it's a manner of protecting the integrity of the tournament. Then of course there's also the issue of protecting against chip dumping.

K-Lo raises the very important question of what constitutes a dead hand at a non-all-in showdown. This could be an important issue for the next TDA Summit and was really why I posted this examplle in the first place, to raise discussion of dead hands at non-all-in showdowns, only to miss that the SB here was in fact all-in.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 01:25:48 PM by MikeB »