What Does the Term “Slow Rolling” Mean in Poker?


Poker is a fun game with a lot of seemingly contradicting ideas. On the one hand, lying, needling, and outright trashing other players is a regular element of the game. On the other hand, there are some lines that must never be crossed. One of them is moving slowly. In fact, if you slow roll someone, even if it’s unintentionally, you’re likely to be shunned at your table and, at worst, instigate a fistfight.

What exactly is a slow roll? At showdown, a slow roll happens when a player with a particularly powerful hand, generally the nuts, is faced with a river bet and then takes too long to call or turn over his cards. This is typically done to deceive an opponent into believing he has the winning hand. Slow rolling is a significant poker etiquette violation.

Here are three specific examples of how a player can use a powerful hand to slow roll an opponent:

  1. After a massive stake or all-in, pausing on the river
  2. Quickly calling but then spending a long time to flip over the winning cards
  3. Pretending to be unhappy or admitting defeat before turning over the winning hand at any stage after the wager or all-in

Why Is Slow Rolling Disallowed?

Slow rolling is frowned upon since it deceives a player when he or she is losing a large sum of money or chips at the poker table. It adds unnecessary stress to an already stressful situation for a player. When you hold off on presenting a strong hand, you give your opponent the erroneous impression that the pot will go his way. Nothing is more vicious than a poker table. Here are a few scenarios in which a sluggish roll could occur.

The slow roller may do the following:

  • Before delaying and turning over the winning hand, act disappointed and even sigh.
  • Make statements that lead their opponent to believe they have won.
  • Before contacting, get “into the tank” and wait a few minutes.
  • Before rapidly turning over their cards, they hold them out over the mud as if to throw them away.

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Is it Illegal to Roll Slowly?

There is typically no formal rule stating that it is unlawful to take a lengthy time to call or turn over your cards with a powerful hand. Slow rolling in the incorrect poker room, though, may result in you being blacklisted or worse. I’ve heard of violence taking place in parking lots outside casinos when someone was slow rolled.

I’d advise you to check the local rules before slow rolling, but I believe it is horrible advice. You should be thinking about how to defeat your opponents, not how to make them hate you for the rest of their lives. To most poker players, slow rolling someone is a heinous crime.

What Should You Do If You’ve Been Slowly Rolled?

It’s usually advisable to take the high road if you’re on the receiving end of a slow roll. Someone is most likely slow rolling you in order to get under your skin and get you off your game. As a result, the best policy is to simply say “great hand” and go on.

Even still, keep this in mind the next time you’re on the river with a particularly strong hand and this player goes all-in. You’re aware of the adage regarding paybacks.

What Should You Do If You See Someone Else Being Slow Rolled?

It’s better not to react or say anything if you observe another player fall victim to a slow roll. For all you know, the two gamers may have a history of slow rolling each other. In fact, during the next few hands, it’s wise to think of methods to take advantage of the situation, keeping in mind that the slow roller player may be seething.

Although it may appear cruel, emotional control is a crucial aspect of poker. No one will ever soft-pedal you, and you should never do the same. When it comes to developing effective methods, pleasant guys have no place. Take my advice and be a kind guy outside of the game while acting like a merciless villain while playing poker.

Is it Possible to Roll Slowly Before the River?

At any point other than the river, there’s nothing wrong with taking your time or “Hollywooding” with a strong hand. It is also part of the game for a player to seem to be weak in order to keep his or her opponent engrossed in the hand. It is not bad etiquette, but rather a good poker, if taking a lengthy time to act accomplishes this.

What’s the Difference Between Slow Playing and Slow Rolling?

Slow play has nothing to do with how long it takes you to act, and it may happen on any street, including the river. Slow play entails taking a passive action with a very strong hand, such as checking or calling. Fast play, on the other hand, is when you bet or raise a really strong hand quickly.

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Slow Rolling Examples

Giving a slow roll’s play-by-play would never do justice to watching one for yourself.

I was once accused of slow rolling before I even realized what the term meant. When I was playing pub poker, I was dealt an all-in bet on the turn with a flush. Before turning over my cards, I made the error of counting out the chips to call. My opponent accused me of slow rolling right away, and I told him I had no idea what he was talking about. It was explained to me, and I expressed my regret.

Etiquette for Slow Roll Poker

It’s crucial to get into the habit of turning your cards up promptly once you make a call in order to avoid slow rolling someone. Even if you have a hand that is less than the nuts, if the other person has a slightly worse hand, you may be viewed as slow-rolling. You also obtain a few bonus perks by insta-turning your hands up:

  1. It increases the game’s speed.
  2. There’s no way you’ll fold the best hand by accident.
  3. You’ll also be able to confidently show down the marginal hands you’re calling with, deterring future opponents from bluffing you.

Is It Ever Okay to Take Things Slowly?

It may be OK to slow roll someone on rare occasions. Even so, I would avoid slow rolling until you develop a feel for reading table dynamics. Here are a few situations where a slow roll is acceptable:

  • Someone at the table has recently been slow-rolled, and you have a strong hand on the river vs the slow-roller.
  • You’re playing with a bunch of pals, and it’s customary to roll the nuts slowly.
  • Another player has been rude and nasty to the other gamers (Make sure you are ready for an altercation if you slow roll the jerk)
  • You have the image of a rookie and decide to slow roll to maintain that impression (don’t go overboard, and make sure you seem as though you honestly believe you misread your hand).
  • It’s the last table in a tournament, and another all-in is taking place on a nearby table

Slow Rolling Online

Can you slow roll online? is a question that many people have. Yes, it is true!

If you take more than a couple of seconds to face a bet on the river while holding the nuts or near the nuts, it’s dubbed a sluggish roll. In fact, due to the ubiquity of multi-tabling, slow rolling is unlikely to provoke the same damning reaction that you would face if you were to live. Despite this, there’s no reason to slow roll someone for more than a few seconds. Only if you’re inviting a friend or family member into the room to demonstrate your super-strong hand should you do so.

Slow rolls on the internet are usually more tolerable. This is due to the fact that the vast majority of slow rolls are unintentional. Instead, they’re usually caused by internet latency, multitasking, or some other external distraction. In fact, when a true slow roll occurs, few people notice or even comment.


While slow rolling a person while holding the nuts may appear amusing, it’s preferable to stick to the golden rule. No matter how high the stakes are, losing a large pot on the river after believing you had the greatest hand is a terrible feeling. Just because you’re attempting to outsmart your opponents doesn’t imply you have to treat them badly.

A groomed beard and mustache are not the only source of this dude’s sophistication. Good ol’ John is a seasoned casino player who had affairs with numerous online casinos and online sports betting sites. He’s lethal with cards, especially poker, and a go-to guy for anything casino-related. You might think this guy is obsessed with casinos, but he’s the only reason the Bro Collective boat is still sailing.

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