When 2 players are all in and hand is completed dealt. Players turn over the cards and one player has 3 of a kind and the other players has A high. The five turned up cards on table are picked up with the 3 down cards when someone at the table states that the person with the Ace high really had a flush. Can you go back and check the cards to see if there was a flush


4 Answers 4


Under the rules, a player who properly shows his hand is entitled to the pot if the hand wins, regardless of his actions or those of others. This is the "cards speak" rule. Also, the dealer and other players at the table are entitled--and indeed expected--to assist the dealer in assuring that the pot is awarded correctly.

Whether or not a player can be awarded the pot comes down to what the dealer/floorman/casino are capable of and willing to do. If the hand can be reasonably reconstructed from cards in the dealer's hand (mucked or otherwise) and player testimony, then certainly a floorman should do that. If the cards are not retrievable but the floorman can easily check a camera, then he can do that as well. I have awarded many pots by camera when the players had a dispute about the winner after the cards were mucked--but I stress the pot can only be awarded if the camera shows that the player properly tabled his hand at showdown.

If the pot was pushed and mingled into a player's stack and the dealer has begun shuffling for the next hand, a floorman might well rule that it's too late to object to the result, especially if the room is busy/understaffed and he simply isn't able to go to camera.

In any case, players should be reminded to look after their own interests and hold onto their cards until they are quite satisfied with the result, and not just rely on the dealer.


If the board has already been mixed with the burn cards (which I presume are the "3 down cards" you refer to), it seems unlikely that a floor would rule to turn all 8 cards back up and try to determine which 5 were the board. If it is not possible to determine 100% which 5 cards were the board without also revealing the burn cards, I would suggest the mistake cannot be reversed and the player with 3OAK wins the pot.

It's the responsibility of the player who had the flush to speak up if an error is made in reading their hand - they should have said something before the pot was awarded to the player with 3OAK, or the board was mucked.


At the casino I work at, (large place with fountains on the Las Vegas strip, that I do not speak for), the official time that a hand is over is when the shuffle starts for the next hand, the shuffle starts at the first riffle or push of the button on a shuffle machine.

In the particular case you describe, the next hand is technically not started so the floor would make a decision on it. If the players involved are generally agreed that the person had the flush, fine the pot is awarded thus. If there is disagreement the floor and dealer might dig through the muck to attempt to recreate the hand, then decide, the floor person might just make a decision based on player testimony etc. If they really cannot come to a decision everyone is content with at the table they would do a video review if possible. Sometimes video review is not possible, not all tables are always covered adequately. In this case without cooperation from the players and some evidence the floor person is comfortable with, the pot will stay as awarded.

However, there can be exceptions to this timing on the hand ending depending on the nature of the problem. When an exception can be made is subjective to many factors. Like lee said in his post, if he is not to swamped he can review video, and typically the less serious the consequence is to the players the less swamped he has to be to go to the video. The time since the hand actually ended also degrades the likelihood that the floor person will make a decision on a situation. If the player three hands later suddenly gets an inkling that he might have had a flush, he is more likely then not out of luck.

Ideally we always want the pot awarded to the winning hand at showdown. However, having to call a floor because someone may have made a mistake is disruptive to a game and the process itself is not always accurate to determining the best hand. The ideal behind a simple rule that says that time is up when the hand is done is meant to minimize this kind of disruption. A floor person can always make exceptions depending on the merits of the situation or not.


Here is the order
Let just assume 2 players for ease

  • Betting complete
  • Last aggressor shows
  • Caller either mucks or shows
  • Dealer awards the pot
  • Sometimes need to count out some chips if two all in
  • Dealer moves chips to winner
  • Dealer mucks the board

The point of no return is pretty much when the chips are moved. If the player did not recognize and defend their hand by then that is their problem. The chance of a dealer not reading a hand correctly pretty slim.

The board has been out the whole betting round and player does not know their hand? It happens - Phil Ivy mucked an ace high flush with 4 flush on the board.

  • Pots can and have been returned to a player days after the hand took place, because X-ray was paying attention but the winning player left before they had told the supervisor. Calling the award a point of no return is misleading. And mucking a hand without revealing it first is irrelevant to this case, since all hands have been shown in the OP due to the all-in. Cards speak, the flush wins.
    – Nij
    Dec 11, 2016 at 5:28

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.