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Playing tips from Ellis

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Well one thing I've mentioned before but not for a long time is dealer body language. This works best in casinos that don't rotate their dealers frequently and the more experience the dealer has the better this works. I picked up on it when I was playing full time.

I always attempt and usually succeed in getting the dealer on my side. The experienced dealer gets very used to the cards at her table. She gets a great feel for what's happening with her cards. When she agrees with your play you know it, but when she doesn't, you also know it. On close calls, I have often changed my play based on dealer body language. She was right a lot more often than she was wrong.

For whatever reason this seems to occur more frequently with female dealers but there is the occasional male... I also remember many occasions where this worked in reverse. Some dealers make better dealers than players. And some dealers make better players than dealers. Hey, we are there to win! Every little bit helps!

See below:


> Date: Sat, 12 Jan 2008 19:16:17 -0500

> From: carlo_molina@yahoo.ca

> Subject: RE: Your question

> To: ellis_858@hotmail.com


> is there anything you have learned or noticed that

> only you learned or noticed from real play or home

> practice that you never mentioned because maybee you

> only noticed it one time? tell me if this is good or

> is there a better way. When I have no read on the hole

> cards and the last 5 cards before my decision has 3

> tens in those last 5 and I am stiff, I'll stand.

So would I based on the general rule that when tens are running, favor standing and when lows are running favor hitting.


> the dealer has a low up and I read a low in the hole,

> so she is strong or potentially, and I am stiff and

> the last 5 cards before my decision has 3 tens, then I

> will stand. I would only hit a stiff when the last 5

> cards has 3 tens when I read the dealer strong with 2

> highs and not 2 lows. So, 3 tens in last 5, I stand if

> she is strong with 2 lows. I hit if she is strong with

> 2 highs. I stand in last 5 cards with 3 tens when hole

> is unknown wether a low or a high up. What do you

> think?

Hmmm that's a tough call even for me. You are talking about conflicting evidence. Here, you're best off to go by the game you are in. You always get a feel for the cards in the game you are in. That educates your gut. Then go by your gut feel in that game. The reason its tough for me is because you have taken your question out of context when you isolate it from a specific game. The great player thinks with his gut in conflicting evidence situations. The lessons from the game you are in takes presidence over everything.


Another one is when I am stiff and the dealer has a

> high up card and I read a low in the hole, I read her

> weak, and lows ran in and out of the hole card, then

> before my hit decision one high or a ten falls, I

> should stand but, I still hit. in this situation, I

> only stand when after all those lows 2 high cards or 2

> tens fall, then I will stand and anticipate a dealer

> break.

Right, that is why we monitor lone tens in a shoe or at a table. If lone tens are common at the table then a single ten would not prompt us to hit. However, particularly in 8 deck we can get games with "clean" clumps when lone tens are rare or non existent. Then we react to a single ten as the beginning of a high clump.

See, this is why I tell NBJ players not to count. Counting distracts you from gleaning the really important information out of a table. What's happening at your table is far more important and far more useful than the count.

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