OPTAH (one player to a hand) question. Did host overstep?

abby99

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I disagree. Once a hand is mucked, it is irretrievably dead.

This is, in fact, why dealers are instructed to tap the muck with the folded hand before turning it over - to make the fold irreversible before complying with the request to show.

From RROP for Home Games, under Showdown:

5. Any player who has been dealt in may request to see any hand that has been called, even if the opponent's hand or the winning hand has been mucked. However, this is a privilege that may be revoked if abused. If a player other than the pot winner asks to see a hand that has been folded, that hand is dead. If the winning player asks to see a losing player’s hand, both hands are live, and the best hand wins.

The dealer taps the muck with the folded hand to kill it if somebody other than the winner of the hand makes the request. It's only when the winner at showdown makes the request that both hands are live and the folded hand can rise from the dead.

Disclaimer: House rules may differ.
 
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jbutler

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I disagree. Once a hand is mucked, it is irretrievably dead.

This is, in fact, why dealers are instructed to tap the muck with the folded hand before turning it over - to make the fold irreversible before complying with the request to show.

From RROP for Home Games, under Showdown:

5. Any player who has been dealt in may request to see any hand that has been called, even if the opponent's hand or the winning hand has been mucked. However, this is a privilege that may be revoked if abused. If a player other than the pot winner asks to see a hand that has been folded, that hand is dead. If the winning player asks to see a losing player’s hand, both hands are live, and the best hand wins.

The dealer taps the muck with the folded hand to kill it if somebody other than the winner of the hand makes the request. It's only when the winner at showdown makes the request that both hands are live and the folded hand can rise from the dead.

Disclaimer: House rules may differ.

Additionally, per RROP, under Dead Hands:

2. Cards thrown into the muck may be ruled dead. However, a hand that is clearly identifiable may be retrieved at management's discretion if doing so is in the best interest of the game. We will make an extra effort to rule a hand retrievable if it was folded as a result of false information given to the player.
 

Mental Nomad

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Additionally, per RROP, under Dead Hands:

2. Cards thrown into the muck may be ruled dead. However, a hand that is clearly identifiable may be retrieved at management's discretion if doing so is in the best interest of the game. We will make an extra effort to rule a hand retrievable if it was folded as a result of false information given to the player.

This is true - if the folding is, itself, an irregularity, the house can try to right the game, or if there is a question of fairness/cheating, the cards can be shown for fact finding. For example, if someone tosses their hand at the muck after someone says, "all in," and the person then says, "I was just kidding - I'm not even in this hand," then the hand should be retrieved, if possible.

From RROP for Home Games, under Showdown:

5. Any player who has been dealt in may request to see any hand that has been called, even if the opponent's hand or the winning hand has been mucked. However, this is a privilege that may be revoked if abused. If a player other than the pot winner asks to see a hand that has been folded, that hand is dead. If the winning player asks to see a losing player’s hand, both hands are live, and the best hand wins.

The dealer taps the muck with the folded hand to kill it if somebody other than the winner of the hand makes the request. It's only when the winner at showdown makes the request that both hands are live and the folded hand can rise from the dead.

Disclaimer: House rules may differ.

House rules may always differ - but RROP do not conflict with what I was taught in dealing school. As I recall, in this situation, I was taught:

Assume: two players at showdown. One player folds his hand, but the cards are not yet mucked.

If a non-participant asks for the hand to be shown, the dealer should muck the hand, award the pot, and move on.
If a participant in the hand who is no longer in the hand asks for it to be shown, the dealer should tap the hand to the muck to kill it and then show the cards. They're asking to see the cards, but should not affect the outcome.
If someone who is still in the hand at showdown asks for the cards to be shown, the hand should be tabled and shown live; they're asking for it to be in the showdown.

Timing matters greatly here. This was stressed to us in dealer school - you don't rush the fold into the muck, but you also don't draw it out, hoping for someone to insist on it being shown - you need to cleanly and deliberately muck the hand at your standard pace. If the winner asks for the hand to be shown after it has been mucked, it's too late to make it live. You can't go looking for the hand in the muck, unless the floor has come over to deal with an irregularity. The hard and fast rule we were given as far as timing for requests at the showdown: if the cards touch the muck, it's dead, period.

I have never heard of cards touching the muck and being brought back to life in the course of normal action - regardless anyone asking to see the cards, and as I read RROP, I don't see that being called for.

There's a bit of a lame angle-shoot possible here, where the winner could intentionally ask for the cards to be shown just as they hit the muck, so that they're live - but it's really weak. Regardless, as dealers, we're taught to avoid all of that mess by ALWAYS mucking by inserting the discards into the muck, not by putting it on top. That way it's unlikely to be possible for someone to ask for a late show. The only time we are to tap the top of the much with the discards is to intentionally kill them before showing, as per above.

The biggest reason for someone involved in a showdown to be asking for another hand to be shown (apart from just wanting to know how someone plays) is when there are three at the showdown, and someone suspects pot-jamming. The jammer may have planned to fold to a river bet, and be caught with their pants down if it checks down. Usually, they'll try to forcibly fold into the muck as a defense.

But, as others said above - house rules may differ!
 

jbutler

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I have never heard of cards touching the muck and being brought back to life in the course of normal action - regardless anyone asking to see the cards, and as I read RROP, I don't see that being called for.

As above, RROP allow for discretion as to whether cards which have touched the muck may be live or dead based on whether they are identifiable and whether retrieving the cards is good for the game. There is nothing magic about "touching the muck" which is why RROP says those hands "may be ruled dead" based on the factors discussed.

In any case, this is certainly not true:

Once a hand is mucked, it is irretrievably dead.

This is, in fact, why dealers are instructed to tap the muck with the folded hand before turning it over - to make the fold irreversible before complying with the request to show.
 
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