Why is there a cap on betting in casino poker?

Cap betting is a poker rule that refers to limiting the amount of bets that can be made on any given round in Texas Hold’em poker. In fact, it could be in any game poker but is most often asked about from hold’em players, who frequent casinos to play live poker tables.

Cap betting is short for capping the bets, stopping the betting to move on to the next round. {Of course this is only found in limit type, poker games, as it wouldn’t make any sense to have such rule in no limit games}. Now cap betting refers to the amount of bets per round, and not the amount of money in a pot, which you would find in a pot limit poker game.

Usually bets and raises per round are limited to four times the current bet. So if you are at a $2/$4 hold’em table before the flop, the maximum you’ll be able to put in the pot is $8, not accounting for blind money in there already. Fourth and fifth streets, you’ll be able to put in $16. The pot gets larger though when more of the player at the table are involved. You may often hear at the table, especially in the lower limits, “cap it” as a result of raising and re-raising before the flop with marginal hands, and even more marginal players. Therein lies the real reason casinos have cap betting. It’s simply a matter of poker math. Don’t kid yourself into thinking they are protecting players from losing their stacks, they don’t care about that at all.

There is a reason casinos limit the betting this way. They earn more rake by inviting more weaker players into each and every pot. Keep in mind this is not a sit and go tournament, this is cash game strategy. This goes to the very nature of loose players who frequent casinos and want to stay in pots too long. To limit the number of bets, rather than the amount of each bet, many pots become super-sized and offer great odds for drawing hands.

There is also a common rule in poker rooms that negates cap betting on 5th street when the action gets heads up, – between just two players. In that scenario, players can raise and re-raise each other until one of their stacks dries up. Yes you can, and guess why…. right. The casinos earn more. Since all the other players are out of the hand, the only way for the pot to grow bigger is as a result of aggressive betting by the remaining two combatants. These are some simple texas holdem rules you should understand before going to the casino – understanding them may very well save you some money.