The ‘Flop’ is the term we use for the first three community cards in variants such as the popular Texas Hold’em, with all three cards being dealt at the same time. This action introduces the second round of betting and significantly accelerates the development of the hand, thanks to there now being so many more possibilities than was the case pre-flop.
The cards are dealt face up and all players may use any combination of the ‘board’ (including their hole cards and subsequent Turn and River) to make the best possible 5-card hand.
When a player has been dealt, for example, AA and the Flop comes A93 they are said to have ‘flopped’ a set of aces. We also refer to connecting – or otherwise – with the flop. For example, holding 75 and seeing AKK appear is an example of ‘missing the flop’ or being ‘missed by the flop’ entirely.
In games such as No Limit Texas Hold’em the flop is incredibly important. Having established a 5-card hand and, critically, being presented with valuable information with which to assess our overall chances by factoring in various possibilities come the Turn and/or River, we are in a good position to properly consider our options, including this or that line of play with which we might wish to proceed. Compared with so-called pre-flop decisions, which are based almost entirely on the relative value of our hole cards, what happens post-flop is significantly more complex.