word type: adjective

  1. A poker decision that likely either has a negative expected value (-EV) or is slightly +EV at best.

Possible Usage

When poker players are unsure about a situation or action, they often use the word 'marginal' to describe their misgivings in a nice way. For example, if a player is giving advice to his friend, he might say, "Pushing with KTo with 18BBs in that spot seems marginal at best." But really, he is essentially saying, "Dude, that's terrible, never fuckin' shove that garbage again!"

Other Uses

The term marginal can also be used to reference something you aren't sure about, for example when you don't quite know what the correct play is, you might say, "Man that's a pretty marginal spot, I'm not sure what I'd do there." Poker players also tend to use 'marginal' to describe a real life situation, such as telling your friend, "Man that was a pretty marginal call to stay in and watch a movie with that chick, especially since you didn't close the deal."