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Different Types of Tournaments

Different Types of Tournaments

Texas Holdem tournaments, along with most all other poker tournaments, follow a typical path.  All players start with the same amount of poker chips.  At the poker tables, the blinds gradually increase.  And the players are gradually eliminated until a winner is decided. The winner is awarded a prize amount and so are the other top finishers.  Most of these poker tournaments are freezeouts – once a player loses all his poker chips, he’s gone.

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While that’s the way it usually goes, there are a number of variations on this theme.  One of the most common is Re-buy and Add-on Tournaments.  A re-buy lets a player buy back into the poker tournament.  There’s usually a time limit on when you can re-buy.  After it passes, players can still add-on.  They can buy a set number of poker chips for a set price to “add on” to their stack.  With these options, you can take more chances betting, especially in the early rounds where you can re-buy.

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If you’re in a hurry to make your money or get chased from the poker tables, you might try a Turbo tournament.  That’s one where the blinds rise very quickly, sometimes every 5 minutes.  Sometimes as quick as every two minutes.  With blinds getting that high, there’s not too much post-flop play because players are often forced to go all-in pre-flop or fold.  In a Turbo tournament, it’s smart to play aggressively.  Steal the blinds as often as you can and hope the poker cards come your way.

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A satellite tournament doesn’t offer a cash prize.  It rewards the winners with entry into a higher buy-in tournament.  The World Series of Poker uses satellite tournaments.

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We have Party Poker to thank for the steps tournament.  It is usually a series of single poker table satellite tournaments with increasingly larger buy-ins, with big cash prizes at the final step.  Most steps poker tournaments have five steps.  Winners of the first step are awarded an entry into the second step and so on.

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These are just a few of the many poker tournament variations you’ll run into in casinos, live poker rooms and online poker rooms and casinos.

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