In a small-blind/big-blind poker game (I'm thinking of Texas Hold 'em, but I guess this question applies to any similarly structured poker game), how does the structure change when the games gets to the final two players?

So, for four+ players, it's:

[D] [SB] [BB] [UTG]* (pre-flop)

For three players, it's:

[D/UTG] [SB] [BB]

So, for two players, is it:


* [D] = Dealer
[SB]=Small Blind
[BB]=Big Blind
[UTG] = Under The Gun, i.e. first to act.

  • 3
    Here is another question that asks a similar question: boardgames.stackexchange.com/questions/1617/…
    – RoToRa
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 15:02
  • Your question seems ambiguous. - Is the dealer actually a player, or someone separate? - Is the dealer fixed at one person, or does deal rotate?
    – Mawg
    Commented Apr 14, 2021 at 8:01

2 Answers 2


No. Under practically all rules, the dealer posts the small blind and is first to act preflop. After the flop, the other player acts first.

Other rules have occasionally been implemented -- I believe Party Poker used to have this backwards preflop -- but this is almost universal. It is generally thought to lead to a better game with more action, as the small blind has a higher incentive to complete or raise when he has the benefit of acting last postflop.


What your post describes, with the dealer posting the big blind, covers how I have always seen this scenario played, between various casinos in Biloxi, MS, USA and local games in Nashville TN and Atlanta GA.

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