Have you ever wondered why Texas Hold’em is the most popular variant of poker? Not only is it the most well-known version of cards, but some people are not even aware that there is any other.
Since its appearance at the beginning of the 20th century, the fame and popularity of the Texas Hold’em variant has only known an upward trend. Although its exact origins are unknown, we do know that Texas Hold’em has been linked to the most reputable events in the poker world, such as the WSOP.
Thus, Texas Hold’em has become the poker variant that best expresses the spirit of a card game that has unleashed the passion of thousands of people around the world. In today’s article we tell you about its history and the keys to its success.
When was Texas Hold’em invented?
The origins of Texas Hold’em poker are full of mystery. We can only take as a reference the first documents that refer to this modality, which date back to the beginning of the last century.
It seems that the cradle of what is the most famous poker modality in the world is located in a small town in the south of the state of Texas, called Robstown. North America discovered poker due to the French settlers, who exported this card game to the city of New Orleans, the epicenter of playing cards in American territory.
Thus, the Texas State Legislature, which collects this information, allows us to approach the first steps of this variant. However, to point out the inventor of Texas Hold’em is practically impossible.
Before the irruption of Texas Hold’em, there was another poker variant that stood out as the great favorite: Five Card Draw. Originating after the Civil War, in the middle of the 19th century, this variant aimed at getting the best possible five-card hand. After a first round, players could discard some of their cards.
What caused this variant to be displaced by Texas Hold’em? We tell you about it below.
Texas Hold’em Poker Expansion
The Five Card Draw variant consisted of really simple rules, which allowed many people to enjoy a very entertaining time with the cards.
On the other hand, the Texas Hold’em variant was gaining strength in the state of Texas, until it practically became a religion. From there, it spread to cities such as Dallas and, in a short time, it made the leap to casinos thanks to important tycoons such as Benny Binion. Texas Hold’em soon made its appearance in the prestigious casinos of Las Vegas.
The city of gambling par excellence was already known in the mid-twentieth century for its spectacular casinos, which began to be built after the legalization of gambling in the 1930s.
At this time, the casinos bet on introducing a series of changes in the gambling format, creating a new dimension in which the customers would face the banker hand to hand. Texas Hold’em was considered the variant that worked best with this new dynamic.
But what really catapulted Texas Hold’em to the top was the celebration of the first edition of the WSOP at Binion’s Horseshoe in Las Vegas, the first gambling hall in this city.
This famous tournament series, organized by the aforementioned Binion’s, has become the most famous poker tournament in the world. At its tables, the Texas Hold’em modality was imposed, which contributed and unleashed its knowledge in any corner of the planet.
Thus, it was these tournaments that truly gave worldwide fame to the Texas Hold’em modality.
Why is Texas Hold’em Poker so popular?
As you know, Texas Hold’em was not the first poker variant. Before it, there were other highly appreciated modalities that had years of tradition at the tables. However, there are certain aspects that explain why it is so popular.
Easy to understand
If there is one thing that the Texas Hold’em variant has in common with Five Card Draw, it is rules that are accessible to everyone.
All those who have tried poker for the first time have done so with the intention of having a fun and entertaining time. Thus, Texas Hold’em has rules that are easy to understand, allowing you to play your first games in a short time.
A Texas Hold’em poker game consists of several phases: preflop, flop, turn and river. Players are dealt two cards at the beginning of the game, known as preflop. The small blind and the big blind talk and the rest of the players, based on their cards, decide to call, raise or fold.
After this first phase, the flop is reached. Three community cards are revealed in the center of the table and a new round of betting begins. Once the players have spoken, the fourth card, the turn, is revealed.
After another round of betting, the river, the fifth card, is revealed. The hand ends with a new round of betting and the showdown, where the players show their two cards hidden until then. The player with the best combination of cards wins.
The Texas Hold’em variant was made known by the hand of important tycoons of the time and practiced in the casinos of cities of reference in the field of gambling, such as Las Vegas.
Thus, the people who went to the casinos played this modality, since it was the one that prevailed at the tables.
Link to major tournaments
Undoubtedly, tournaments have been the real responsible for the fame of Texas Hold’em. But, in this case, it was not just any tournament, but the most prestigious and reputable events in the poker world, such as the aforementioned WSOP.
In more recent times, the media, the internet and, especially, online poker, have contributed to increase, even more, the fame of the poker variant par excellence: Texas Hold’em.