by Michael Shackleford
Table of Contents
The Ten Commandments of Gambling
Caribbean Stud Poker
Let It Ride
Pai Gow Poker
Sports Betting NFL
Texas Hold ’Em Poker
Three Card Poker
Frequently Asked Questions
Blackjack Basic Strategies
Spanish 21 Basic Strategies
Keno $1 9-Spot Returns in Las Vegas
Pai Gow Poker House-Way Strategy
Slot Machine Return Percentages
Probabilities of Winning Hands in Texas Hold ’Em
Index of Tables
The Ten Commandments of Gambling:
While climbing Mount Charleston, I came across a burning slot machine. A voice emanated from the fire, identifying itself as the God of Averages. This is what I was told to say in this book.
I Thou shalt honor thy gambling debts.
II Thou shalt expect to lose.
III Thou shalt trust the odds, not hunches.
IV Thou shalt not overbet thy bankroll.
V Thou shalt not believe in betting systems.
VI Thou shalt not hedge thy bets.
VII Thou shalt covet good rules.
VIII Thou shalt not make side bets.
IX Thou shalt have good gambling etiquette.
X Thou shalt tip.
Having fulfilled my obligation to the God of Averages, here are my further comments on each commandment.
I—Thou shalt honor thy gambling debts.
A true gentleman honors his debts, especially gambling debts. When making a bet with another person, you’re put-ting your honor on the line to pay if you lose. No excuses!
II—Thou shalt expect to lose.
The Las Vegas Strip was not built by winners. Even with good rules and strategy, the odds are still usually in the ca-sino’s favor. So don’t get mad if you lose. Think of it as the price you pay for entertainment.
III—Thou shalt trust the odds, not hunches.
If you want to maximize your odds, then believe in mathematically proven strategies, not hunches. If hunches work, why are so many psychics still working the Boardwalk in Atlantic City rather than playing in the casinos and making a profit?
IV—Thou shalt not overbet thy bankroll.
Before playing, determine what you can safely afford to gamble with as entertainment money. Stick to your limits and don’t gamble with money you need for necessities.
V—Thou shalt not believe in betting systems.
For every one legitimate gambling writer there are a hundred charlatans trying to sell worthless betting systems that promise an easy way to beat the casinos. I know it’s a cliche, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
VI—Thou shalt not hedge thy bets.
Hedge bets invariable carry a high house edge. For ex-ample, never take insurance in blackjack and never bet the any craps or any seven in craps.
VII—Thou shalt covet good rules.
Rules vary from casino to casino. To improve your odds (and results), know good rules from bad, then seek out and play the best rules possible.
VIII—Thou shalt not make side bets.
Side bets are sucker bets. Period.
IX—Thou shalt have good gambling etiquette.
Gambling is a lot more fun when people are polite and respect each other. For more on this, see the appendix on gambling etiquette (Appendix G).
X—Thou shalt tip.
Dealers generally make only minimum wage and count on tips to earn a decent living. Although the amount to tip is subject to much debate, the reason for tipping should be based on good service, not how much you win or lose. Not to tip is to steal the dealer’s service.
Plenty of gambling books explain how to play the games; that’s Gambling 101. Gambling 102 takes you to the next stage, where you’re playing the games in the best manner for the least amount of effort. Within these pages, gambling’s "Wizard of Odds" provides the best strategies possible—along with the easiest learning curve—for all the casino games, from baccarat to video poker, from sic bo to sports betting, Caribbean stud to craps.
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