Any Two Cards

[CC] “That’s what I love about Hold ‘Em!”, exclaimed Carlos the Crazy.

[FF] “What’s that?”, prodded Figaro the Fish.

[CC] “Any two cards can win! Any two cards can flop the nuts,1 and any two cards can be the nuts at the end”, beamed Carlos.

In the second blind level of the home tournament, the loosest player in the group had just parlayed the 7♦4♦ into a huge pot, quadrupling up when the slot machine flop spun lucky 7’s: 7♠7♥7♣. After a middle position raise to three times the big blind, Carlos had min-reraised from the button. On the flop, his standard continuation bet hadn’t raised any eyebrows, and all three remaining opponents called. When a perfect A♦ on the turn hit them all, a bet, raise, and reraise presented Crazy Carlos the easiest call of his life, all-in for a couple hundred chips short of the last reraise.

[CC] After a meaningless river 5♥, the other three players split the small side pot as Carlos beamed, “I think I have a new favorite hand”, raking in the jackpot to become the overwhelming chip leader.

[TT] “Carlos speaks not-so-softly and carries a not-so-big stick / Beware the trombones,2 the Heinz,3 and the Cambodian Big Slick!”,4 warned Tyrone the Telephone.


  1. The “nuts” has a few related definitions:
    • The current best hand. On a 7♠7♥7♣ board, four Sevens is the current nuts but could be beaten by runner-runner for a straight flush.
    • The best hand of a certain type. On a J♥10♥9♥ board, any KQ gives you the nut straight, but a flush or straight flush would be better.
    • The best hand possible regardless of any future streets. On a K♣J♣9♣ board, the Q♣10♣ is the unbeatable nuts. This usage is uncommon before the river.
  2. The 76 is called “trombones” because of the parade song “76 Trombones” from the Broadway musical Music Man.
  3. The 75 is called the “Heinz”, because the H.J. Heinz Company claims to offer 57 product varieties.
  4. The 74 is called the “Cambodian Big Slick”, because… I have no idea, other than the intentional contrast to the real big slick, the AK. The 32 has two similar nicknames, “Mississippi Slick” and “Polish Big Slick”.

Related Links:

  • Joe Hachem won the 2005 World Series of Poker Main Event after flopping a straight with 7♣3♠ on the final hand.

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