Home > Poker Strategy Tips > Pokerrooms are NOT rigged

Pokerrooms are NOT rigged

I hear a lot of beginner poker players complain about this. Here is a typical scenario:

“Man, I’ve been playing at [Insert name of random poker room here] for a few days now, and it seems that each time I flop a top pair, someone has a better kicker! each time I flop a set, someone flops a straight!! This is impossible, the pokerroom MUST BE RIGGED!!”


The poker room is NOT rigged. No poker room is. It is actually against the poker room’s best  interest to cheat their players in any way. The more natural the games are and the more the players win, the bigger the chances they will keep playing and earn the casino more money. The last thing a casino wants to do is drive away its customers.


Because they haven’t learned how variance works. In poker, no matter how good you are, you can literally go on for months and months losing hands in the most outrageous ways. It might seem absolutely impossible and surreal at times. But ALWAYS keep in mind that there is a mathematical justification for what is going on. And once you are experienced enough, you will understand that it is simply a part of the game. It will continue to happen, for ever and ever, no matter how good you get. You can only try to minimize your losses when it happens.


1) Never switch to another poker room just because you are running badly. It is not the pokerroom’s fault, no matter how convinced you might be. Whenever you think of changing rooms, come back to this article and read it again.
2) Never allow yourself to be affected when you are getting a cold deck. It can be hard to stay in command of your emotions, so if you cannot do it — leave the poker tables and don’t play for a few hours. You will notice that with time, you will become more immune to it. To the point where you will almost stop caring.
3) If you find yourself thinking “this poker room is rigged”, realize that this there is simply a weakness in your game that needs to be corrected. Ask for help in some poker forums and let them help you.
4) Some people are tempted to move up the stakes when they are losing. Don’t do that either. Always follow the proper rules of bankroll management. Always.

If you are very new to poker, the article above might sound unreal to you. No matter — just bookmark it in your web browser. There will come a time when variance will hit you so badly that you will absolutely convinced the poker room is cheating you. When this happens, come back here – and re-read the whole article as many times as you need to let it sink in.


  1. January 12, 2011 at 5:44 am

    Hey Mark,
    Good job with the blog. I always chuckle a little when online poker players feel that they are being cheated by the room (Poker Stars, Full Tilt, etc.) If you just do some simple math on the rake that they are collecting from the thousands of tables that are running you’ll see that they are KILLING IT! The money being made by the room is HUGE. Why would any room try to “rig it” and risk being caught? If they got caught, their golden goose would be killed.

    Of course a few people have been busted cheating online, but in the grand scheme of things I believe these are the rare exception.

    Good luck with your blog!


  2. January 12, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    Hi John, thank you for posting 🙂

    Exactly my point. There is absolutely no reason for them to cheat their clients, because if it would get out in ANY WAY that they are actually cheating (and it would definitely get out once the hardcore poker community would start digging into it), then the whole room is destined for bankruptcy, and perhaps even worse.

    The beginner poker players often don’t realize how complicated can poker be, and how tough the variance can get. So it is only natural that they will blame this on the poker room rather than on themselves, because honestly — who would want to admit that they are simply not good enough?

    The good news is that with enough practice, you simply stop paying that much attention to the swings. I’m sure every guy who has been playing poker for longer than half a year will agree.

    I will check out your blog tomorrow John, I just feel like going to sleep now 🙂 Thanks again for posting man!

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