There is probably no wrong or right answer to this just wondered what the general opinion is.

To set the scene. I was just playing in a tourney where we got down to the final 6 and 5 paid. The chip leader at the start of the final table never came back from the break and we all agreed to let them blind out. All apart from one guy who continued to play normally and put a couple of us at risk of going out on the bubble.

I guess there are several questions here really:

Would you say that this is considered some form of collusion?

Were we wrong to do this?

Or since the guy clearly figured he would survive the bubble does it serve them right for sitting out the remainder of the tourney?

What would you all do in this situation?

Finally was the guy that continued to play normally right to try and take advantage of the fact he knew we were all folding, even with decent hands?

  • 1
    Did you all explicitly agree out loud?
    – Toby Booth
    Commented Jan 13, 2013 at 23:56
  • Well a couple of people said it. I didnt say yes or no, but did start folding etc.
    – Gaz Winter
    Commented Jan 14, 2013 at 8:56
  • The guy who played normally was doing the correct action because the blind raising that would occur in the time to blind the absent player out would be too much to pay at the end.
    – yaki moto
    Commented Apr 24, 2015 at 18:16

1 Answer 1


If there was an agreement to do so I would say that it is a form of collusion and therefore wrong.

If it just happens then it should be considered softplay and may draw a warning acording to most tournament rules.

By not being there the absent player cannot participate in the hand nor can he see the action taking place. That is to his detriment and if he returns he has lost that information.

But since he was not part of the agreement to checking it down that violates the rules. For example the players can't declare how the prize money is divied up differently than the tournament structure unless all players agree including the tournament host.

As soon as any collusionary comments arrise, I always try and stop it dead immediatly. The most common is two players asking if they want to check it down with another player all-in. That doesn't mean I won't check it down, but I will never anounce it or discuss it.

If I suddenly have what I think is a vulnerable but winable hand I will make moves to get the pot. I have won pots that way, I have been stung, knocked out and I have caused other players to survive. My goal is to win the tornament and sometimes that can upset other players. But it is the way the game is to be played.

And the guy who continued to play had every right to do so and some may say, the obligation to try and win the pots he can take with either winning cards or winning moves.

  • 1
    absolutely correct. A verbal agreement to let someone blind out is collusion (cheating). Most sites could ban your account for that kinda thing and B&M casinos can kick you out, too.
    – xyious
    Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 18:05
  • In which case I am glad I didnt agree in writing. Still though is it not also bad etiquette to deliberately sit out the whole of the final table because you assume you will cash?
    – Gaz Winter
    Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 9:36
  • 1
    I guess it would be a form of bad etiquette because the table cannot make a deal (chop) without all players agreeing. If the tournament has a no-chop rule then I don't see an issue with it. Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 12:16

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