What Is A Bubble In Poker?

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Last Updated: December 18, 2023

What Is A Bubble In Poker

The term bubble refers to the point in a poker tournament where only one player remains to be eliminated before the tournament enters the “in the money” stage.

In other words, before the MTT enters the stage where all remaining players will receive a payout. From a strategy point of view, the bubble is an extremely important concept in tournament poker.

During the bubble, the tournament dynamics change significantly since players with short stacks play much more conservatively in order not to get eliminated one sport away from the money.

On the other hand, players with bigger stacks try to take advantage of their opponents' tight play by raising and 3-betting with wider ranges to accumulate as many chips as possible, sometimes even any two cards.

The bubble can also describe a situation where one player is left until the final table is formed. In this case, the term is usually used as “Final table bubble,” meaning that when one more player loses his stack, the final table will be formed.

Poker Bubble Example:

Let’s say that a tournament pays out the top 100 players, and there are 101 players remaining. This point in this specific tournament is referred to as the bubble.

The player who is eliminated in the 101 place will be called the player who “bubbled.” This means he is the player who fell one place short of receiving a payout, and everyone else is guaranteed to be in the money.

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