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Poker Dealers

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Poker dealers are marshals of the procession. Game quality is directly linked to the abilities of your dealer. No one is more important.

Conducting the Score

Any fat fingered fool can throw bits of card on a table, but great dealing is about conducting the game. Becoming a casino poker dealer requires formal qualification at a dealer's school. Online tutorials are also widely available.

Poker dealing at the WSOP

Great dealers by their very nature tend to be anonymous. However one of the most respected dealers to ever live is Tony "The Walrus" Shelton. In 1977, Shelton first dealt at the WSOP for players including Puggy Pearson and a fistful of legends. Shelton worked the WSOP continuously for another 30 years.

Thick Skin

Some would say the most important tool needed for being a poker dealer is patience of a saint. Poker history is littered with stories of dealer abuse, sadly just as common amongst professionals as in the amateur game.

Poker dealing at the WSOP

Jack Binion of Horseshoe casino fame had his own unique way bring peace to a rowdy table - "Boys, I can’t have you giving my dealers a hard time. If you do it again, I'll send the Man with the Patch over”. The Man in question was R.D. Matthews, an infamous Texas underworld figure. Respect your dealer!

Markers and Buttons

Devised to avoid arguments about whose turn it was to deal, the marker was originally known as the "buck". Ominously this comes from "buck's horn" which formed the handle of many knives in days of yonder. Even more worryingly, players then often used a knife as the marker itself. Tough time to be a dealer!

Poker dealing at the WSOP

As far as tools of the trade go, a pack of dealer buttons will suffice. Running a poker game without these obligatory tiddly winks is like herding drunk cats.

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