What is a ‘Scoop’?
A ‘scoop’ is a win of all funds in the pot – the usual method of collecting a win in casino games such as poker, unless a hi-lo split or other rule is active or unless there is a tie. Sometimes ‘scoop’ is applied only to large pots. A player can be said to ‘scoop the pot’ or ‘make a good scoop’ – the term can be an active verb or a noun.
If a poker player refers to ‘making a scoop’ or ‘scooping the pot’, they mean that they took the entire pot for themselves. It is sometimes used in the context of a single hand, especially if the pot was a large one, but it also applies to winning the overall pot for the game – that is, eliminating all the opponents and taking home all of the chips.
Many poker games will play on until everyone has been eliminated and there is a single player left holding all of the chips. In this situation, the player has certainly ‘scooped the pot’ – they cleaned up and took every chip that was available to them. Many tournaments and contests play to these rules, with knocked out players eliminated permanently or subjected to a fresh buy-in if they wish to rejoin.
A player in any game might refer to a ‘scoop’, meaning a huge prize such as a jackpot. If a player makes a handy side bet and lands the progressive jackpot in roulette or blackjack, for example, they might say that they ‘scooped the jackpot’ or ‘had a big scoop’ on that game. A ‘great scoop’ is therefore a large win and an ‘unexpected scoop’ is a risky bet that came good against the odds. Some players will refer to a ‘scoop’ as a bet that was unlikely to pay off, but somehow came good.