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Source

“Bring us the girl, and wipe away the debt.” As plans go, I'd seen worse -- except this girl was already gone. Monument Island's a damn ghost town. Seems like they evacuated her when they heard I was here. An old friend told me Comstock spirited her off to that fortress of his. As a one-man job, this just went from bettin' on the river to...drawing dead.

I couldn't find the meaning in any online dictionary. Where does the phrase come from and what does it mean?

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Sounds like colorful use of poker terms.

River - the last card in a hand

Drawing dead - no potential chance to win the hand any more

So the sense seems to be going from a chance to win to ... no chance to win.

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