Guest Appearance on House of Cards Radio, 02/01/16

House of Cards Radio is an interview program hosted by poker and gambling expert Ashley Adams. In the podcast below, I discuss the recent Mississippi Stud hole-carding criminal case that was adjudicated in favor of the players (see this post) along with several topics about advantage play. My segment starts at about 4’30”

You can tune in to House of Cards Radio either in your local radio market or via podcasts.  For more information, visit House of Cards Radio at

Card Counting the Tiger 7, Ox 6 and Kill the Ox/Tiger Baccarat Side Bets

When the patent on EZ Baccarat and its Dragon 7 side bet expired in September, 2013 (see this post), there was a bit of a land rush. Bally (Shuffle Master) was the first to get in, creating “Fortune Baccarat” with the Fortune 7 side bet. Others have followed. This post considers Dai Bacc, which is a new entry to the same intellectual property landscape.

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Bring me to your Casino this Year

If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
– Benjamin Franklin

If you are considering having a training seminar at your property this year, please consider what I can do for you. Over the last few years I’ve visited dozens of properties, giving seminars on a variety of gaming subjects. I’ve enjoyed traveling throughout this country and internationally delivering these seminars. I’ve found that many in the casino industry are hungry to learn more about how their table games, slots, marketing and operations work. I deliver customized seminars and trainings that address the specific needs of the properties that bring me in.

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One Million Page Views!

Today reached a milestone, one million page views! (7:30 AM PST, 1/20/2016).


This blog began on June 25, 2012, so it took just under 3 years 7 months to reach this point.

The big day you see there, April 14, 2014, is the day the news broke of Phil Ivey’s edge sorting. At the time, my blog was the only web-source for information on edge sorting. I don’t expect a number like that again. Right now I average about 1000 page views per day.

Thank you for your readership, may the “math” be with you!

Baccarat Angst

I have long avoided the subject of baccarat mythology on this blog. I am a seeker of scientific truth. As substitutes for truth, fiction, story telling, anecdotes, false memories, mythology and outright lies frustrate me. But, for those very few baccarat players who are intellectually curious and are willing to put aside their falsifiable beliefs, it is worthwhile to post something here to benefit these individuals. Also, for those in the industry who are still on the fence about some of these questions, there may be some benefit in going through this review. Continue reading

Loss Rebate Theorem Spreadsheet with Risk of Ruin

The following spreadsheet extends the previous loss rebate theorem Excel spreadsheet (see this post) to include the risk of ruin (ROR):


I’ve also added a table giving the house edge and standard deviation for some common games. The ROR percentage assumes continuous reinvestment.

If you have any questions, please ask (via email or in the comments) and I’ll add to this post.

Judge orders online poker company to pay Ky. $870 million

This is one of the more amazing articles I’ve read in a while. I used to play on PokerStars — I played 60,000 hands in a single year a few years back (pre-black Friday) and they sent me a T-shirt and baseball cap for my action. I learned that I am a much better online player than live-game player. I am 100% in support of the judge’s ruling in this case. I believe online gambling should be legalized in this country, but as long as it isn’t, such sanctions are appropriate. Maybe this ruling will help shake some sense into lawmakers. Legalize, regulate and tax.

Source: Judge orders online poker company to pay Ky. $870 million

Additional sources:

Card Counting the Tie Max Baccarat Side Bets

It has been a long time since I analyzed card counting a side bet. A few days back I received an unexpected email from a game developer who asked me to consider two of his new baccarat side bets, Low Tie Max (LTM) and High Tie Max (HTM). These two are part of a collection of side bets collectively called Lucky Max (LM). I believe the developer’s intention was to get some publicity for his wagers by having me post favorable card counting results here. The problem is that for one of his side bets it didn’t turn out that way. Continue reading

Borgata to File Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment in Phil Ivey Edge-sorting Case –

Borgata attorney will file for summary judgment later this month in the “edge sorting” mini-baccarat case involving pro poker player Phil Ivey.

Source: Borgata to File Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment in Phil Ivey Edge-sorting Case –

Mississippi Stud Hole-Carding Case Sides with Players

At the Golden Nugget Casino in Las Vegas on November 22, 1983, Steven Einbinder and Tony Dalben were caught hole-carding at blackjack, with Dalben signaling the dealer’s hole-card to Einbinder. In short, these players found a dealer who, through lack of skill, exposed his down or hole-card. This allowed Einbinder and Dalben to change how they played their hands, gaining a huge edge over the house. Their legal problems came when they were caught using signals to secretly communicate this hole-card information with each other. The case was resolved when the Supreme Court of the State of Nevada found that: Continue reading