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Pissed off players


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I have sometimes gotten heat from players about non-standard play at third. It is inevitable that a play that one makes will be the difference between winning and losing for some basic strategy player. Usually they catch on that what I'm doing helps them, but sometimes they don't. Also, what's good for me is sometimes not what's good for them. The main complaint is about taking the dealer's bust card. I probably get this more than most, because I hit like a mad dog.

It sucks when players are pissed off. Once I had the players and the dealer ganging up on me. I just kept doing my thing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I must say that this is phenomenon is happening to me more. Does it ever happen to you guys? When it happens at a crowded table, I just keep doing it and it sometimes can help clear the table. I had some loud mouth guy complaining about it, and an elderly chinese lady at first joined in. Eventually the guy left with his more polite buddy, but the lady stayed to watch me kick some serious ass at third. She said I was just lucky. I eventually left this table, and later saw her sitting at third to try and catch some of my good cards.

I can forsee that this kind of heat from players could be used as the basis for asking me to leave. So far so good though.

I refuse to believe that none of you has ever gotten heat from players. This is a serious issue that deserves some discussion on the board.

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Guest CarlosM

Players nag a lot at me, for the first shoe. By the end of the first shoe or the beginning of the second shoe, I don't hear much! You get used to it. A freind of mine is a cop and he tells me all the time about the verbal abuse they take. Being called pig, bacon. He says you get used to stuff like that. Do you know how easy it is to get a little trigger happy when ones tollerance level is very low? Yikes! This is not directed at anyone. Just what I have learned to get used to. It's part of the job. This is a job. It is our job!

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Yeah, but this one guy was complaining to the pit staff saying this guy's killing me, blah blah blah. The thing I worry the most about is getting asked to leave, and they could come and say, "look fella your style of play is upsetting people." It is a perfect excuse for them to ask one to leave. I would really really hate to be asked to leave.

Also, I think I hit harder than you do. I sometimes flat bet and hit just to "plow the field" so that the next shoe is easier. I saw that Keith recommended this also.

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Don't worry about this. I spoke of it often in NBJ and the Newsletters. Eventually it goes away as your reputation grows both with casino personnel and players. I've never heard of a casino using this excuse to ask a player to leave. The opposite is much more likely.

Players play B.S. by the book and lose. This makes them extremely irritable to begin with. Then you take a dealer break card at third. Now they've got something to blame it all on.

I'm usually looking to reduce the number of players at the table anyway. Certain remarks back at then work every time. Like: "You don't need any help from me to lose buddy. You're doing a fine job all by yourself." Or: "you play so bad, I'm just doing the opposite of whatever you do."

I recall taking First Base with two other players in a clumped green game at Foxwood late one night. It was a perfect NBJ First Base game. They were playing perfect B.S. and making every mistake possible esp. doubling in the long low card runs. I had gone from 1,2 to 1,3 to 1,4 when one of them opened up on me. I replied: "look buddy, just since I sat down, you bought in 7 times and your buddy 4 times. I'm $3000 up and you guys are a total of $5000 down. Yet YOU guys insist on telling ME how to play BJ. No thanks guys, I'd rather win." Then I had the table to myself!

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I guess if the stakes that the BS players are playing are about the same as the stakes the NBJ 3rd base player is playing, then they wouldn't use it as an excuse to throw the NBJ player out, even though the NBJ player is winning.

If they are betting nickels and the NBJ player is raking in stacks of pink and yellow chips, and the casino thinks they can't win it back from the NBJ player, they might use the excuse.

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Please don't be offended about what I'm going to say. I'm still inexperienced. But if you KEEP getting dealer's bust cards at 3rd base, do you sometimes wonder it is not the 'correct' play ? Do you win that hand after all ?

I know how you feel about drawing heat at the table. I often get it myself. Like this evening, despite that I hit my 13 and got a 6 (at 3 rd base) vs. dealer's 4. He broke his 10+4 with and 8. Even the dealer said that I had just saved the table, but there is still this guy said I played dangerously, bla, bla. Sometime I heard players discussed about me at the other end of the table, like 'Can you imagine this kind of person to play ANCHOR ?' and laughed. But never mind it. If you play it 'correctly', soon they will shut up.

Do you want to know what was so funny this evening. I did a couple of those hits. Most of the time I won over the dealer. I didn't care if they won or not. I didn't intend to save the table. I also won a few insurance bets. They saw all that. So despite they wasn't so happy that I was right most of the time, at one call for insurance bet. I held my hand up fast to tell the dealer to wait because I needed to sort out my chips. They all decided to join me to buy insurance. Actually, I was only over reacting. When I looked at the table again I told the dealer I changed my mind. But their bets were out. The result ? 'No body's home'. I laughed to myself because I knew it was because they believed in me and lost.

But I admit that each time I enter the table, I need to psych myself up first. I'll look over the players to see if I may be afraid to play in such table, in case I do take the dealer's bust cards. I also choose the dealer, etc. Like Carlos said, it was a job.

Zenwin.

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Ha ha, no NBJ player ever gets offended by another NBJ player. We are all keenly interested in each other's experiences and we all love war stories. See Zenwin, you are starting to develop war stories of your own.

Of course we didn't set out to take the dealer's break card, its just an occupational hazard. All B.S. B.J. books teach their players to totally ignore how other players play. They say it makes no difference. Just go by your hand and the dealer's up card. WE know that both of these instructions are ridiculous. But the result is that other players will likely not even notice how frequenty your odd behavior SAVES the table. They only notice when you COST the table a win. Sometimes they react!

NBJ players react to WHATEVER is happening in a game. If you are taking the dealer's break card TOO frequently, you react by playing that game closer to basic strategy. But, in general, low cards favor the dealer. In a low card clump, the dealer is very likely to get a low up. The other players have NO conception that the dealer CANNOT break as long as the low clump lasts. They therefore stand as soon as they reach a stiff total of 12 through 16. This, of course, makes the low clump last longer very often giving the dealer her hand. The other players are totally oblivious to this fact of BJ life. The truth is that it is Basic Strategy itself that gives the casino its 15% edge.

Misery loves company! This popular saying might just as well have been created for BJ. It fits perfectly. What are the other players actually thinking? He's winning because he is playing wrong? Now, how stupid is that??? It fits right in with other stupid things we hear from them all the time. Like: "I'll be right with you, Honey, as soon as I lose these chips!" And then they proceed to do exactly that! They play to a plan! They plan to lose! And then they succeed! Next, they yell at you for not doing the same thing! Yep! Misery loves company.

One of the hardest things for a new NBJ player to learn is to avoid being influenced by other players. But this comes with experience. Soon, you will totally ignore them. You know you've got it made when you can't remember if the other players were male or female or white, black, or yellow. The fact is, they just don't count. No pun intended.

There is one exception. Dealers! Experienced dealers often make great players. They watch Basic Strategy NOT work all day long. They play according to the run of cards. Much closer to the way WE play. Dealers usually have great admiration for NBJ players. And NBJ is required reading for dealers at MOST casinos.

We often tell war stories about the upstairs high stakes pit at the Claridge. That's where the pros played. It was actually on the Mezanine floor or however you spell it. Much of NBJ was written from my frequent play there. It was frequent that all the other players in the game were dealers. They play remarkably different than the book players and it often pays to watch their play.

I often speak of dealer body language. It is common for us to get the dealer on our side. Experienced dealers get a great feel for what is coming out of the shoe next. I often change my call when the dealer obviously disagrees. But only if I know the dealer is on my side.

Some dealers are through and through casino oriented. They play AGAINST you. But you get to where you can read their body language too. And play it.

Hey, every little bit of knowledge helps!

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Zenwin, do not worry about offending anyone, least of all Mad Dog. I draw heat from players like everyone else when I make NBJ non-standard plays. I win my share of these hands. ALSO, if there is a dealer bias, I will sometimes flat bet and HIT HIT HIT. After a while of doing this, I can sometimes turn the table around. Also I strangely do pretty well while I'm hitting like a mad dog, sometimes.

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Dealer biases, also called cycle biases, are the No.1 problem we face in today's shoe game. They are extremely apparent to any heads up player. The telltale signs are we see dealer's getting FAR too many first card tens and we see the dealer hitting with impunity to 5 and 6 card hands while we hit and break. It seems magical. Magic or luck has nothing to do with it. It's pure mathematics. The solution is also pure mathematics and fortunately there are several.

Dealer biases are caused by a combination of two things: clumping and Basic Strategy. Clumping causes the low card clumps the dealer so frequently hits into with impunity. Remember, the dealer CAN'T break on any card less than 6. Neither can you! This is why I constantly tell you to favor hitting in low card clumps. Basic Strategy preserves these clumps and reserves them for the dealer because Basic Strategy fails to hit enough in low card sections of the shoe. B.S. players fail to take their fair share of dealer favorable lows out of the game. They say STAND and let the dealer break precisely when she CAN'T break. And they leave sufficient lows in the game to insure the dealer's hand. This is why I frequently say that Basic Strategy is eventually self defeating.

You cannot beat a strong dealer bias and EVERY shoe game will eventually produce a dealer bias - 8 deck more so and quicker than 6 deck but 6 deck will eventually get there with enough players in the game. This is why I say favor games with fewer players.

An empty table is often empty BECAUSE it has a strong dealer bias. BEWARE! But head to head play will eventually break any dealer bias AND head to head play CANNOT produce a dealer bias.

Likewise, new cards cannot have a dealer bias. Dealer biases are caused by continuous play with multiple players.

When faced with a strong dealer bias we cannot win. Nobody can. We have two choices: get out of the game or break the dealer bias. Now we get to the meat: How do you break a dealer bias?

First, recognize that your play alone is often insufficient to break a dealer bias. The more players in the game the less your play effects the dealer bias. You need a more radical approach.

The Mad Dog approach is one good way. Go to minamum bet and play a couple sacrifice hands. Hit until they won't let you hit anymore. One hand will likely not be enough unless you get lucky and don't break until you have usurped enough lows. This is a good way especially if you are playing third because you are usurping the dealer favorable lows right in front of her hand.

You are really not breaking the bias but you are moving it off of the dealer. Biases tend to move clockwise. So the First Base player may well get full benefit of your action. No matter. You don't have to beat the first base player. Your object is to beat the dealer by destroying her hand, her bias.

This might give you the idea of why we do so well at team play by putting several sacrifice players in front of the dealer while putting our Big Player at first base. Get it?

Another way is to change the player number. Play two hands for a couple rounds or get someone else to.

"NO MIDSHOE ENTRY" Now see, you thought that sign was for the players benefit didn't you. That's what the casino keeps saying. That's the party line! There is one thing you can be absolutely sure of. The casino NEVER does anything for YOUR benefit. YOU are their mortal enemy. They only do things for THEIR benefit. They understand that as long as the player number remains the same, the dealer bias is preserved. THAT is the reason for the sign. If you can't change the player number, use Mad Dog's approach. But, either break the dealer bias or get out of the game!

This might all suggest one other concept to you: Partners Play! What are the best positions for the partners? First and third. Frequently you have games that are right in the window where BOTH systems play well. But if you aren't that lucky one partner can go to min. bet and feed the other. This works best when third is weak. Third base hits through lows and stands as soon as a ten shows. Yes, it feeds dealer breaking tens into the dealer while usurping her lows. But when the dealer is pat, where do those tens go? Right, they go straight to your partner on the next hand! Try it!

The dealer up card becomes virtually meaningless in low card clumps. A dealer 6 up is actually stronger than a ten up in a low card clump.

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When taking extra hits, my aim is usually not to do it for a few hands, but rather for a whole shoe or more than that. If you only do it for a few hands, you may succeed in knocking the bias off the dealer's position, but it will quickly return because of the other players not taking enough lows in a low card clump. These biases are diabolical in that they are self-correcting.

By hammering on the whole shoe, we can dismantle the bias for a good long while. I would not try to do this at a full table, because our valiant efforts are diluted by so many other players.

So how hard should we hit? I hit to twenty in this situation. WHAT?!?! You heard me. Twenty. BUT MAD DOG THAT'S NUTS! Yes it is. We are not trying to win these hands, but it's funny when we do, and we win more than you might think. The purpose is to plow the field so that it can again be productive. If people are not freaking out over your moves, you're not doing it right. You have to do something out of the ordinary to knock the dynamics of the shoe into a new more productive state.

Obviously this kind of attack can cost money so beware.

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This is correct and serves to dramatize why scheduling your play, as pointed out in In Search Of, is so important. Go the opposite way of the crowd. The crowd loses. Schedule your play when the casino is least crowded.

Now you know why the casino closes tables to crowd up the open tables. Again, EVERYTHING they do is for their benefit, not yours. The more players at the table the harder it is to win. The less, the better.

This, again, brings up team play. A 5 player team can take over a table and whenever dealer bias raises its ugly head, two players leave the game for a couple of shoes leaving up place markers. The remaining three players will usually have a great couple of shoes while destroying the dealer bias. You can do this all day long. If anyone tries to take one of the two remaining seats you all say to him: "Man you don't want to take that seat, the last two guys got killed there." "That seat is jinxed!" All is fair in war!

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Dealer biases generally suck, and are fed by people doing the same thing over and over. To break the bias we have to start doing something different. Better to just find a better table, but if you're determined to unbias a shoe, there's a number of approaches. Read this whole thread, and see if you still have questions.

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Talking again about 'Pissed off players'. I had the dealer and the table ganging up on me this morning. First, she (the dealer) was just mean to begin with, the type who wants nobody to win except her. And she loved to pick on me. Then, all the players played BS to the book.

As I'm writing this I realize I shouldn't even have played in such table but for playing new cards in this morning that was the last table available. I took the 3rd base (as usual). I often notice, the first shoe was not new, in fact it's a shoe that was played a night before. They never show this shoe, but pull it out from the shuffling machine and start playing. Sometime it is dealer biased. And it was this morning so I immediate lost 4 in a row, I stopped until towards the end of the shoe I joined in to win my 2 hands back. There came another shoe (new cards this time), I kept playing with NBJ I heard half of the table was commenting about my play, (to the point that was very impolite). There was one hand I needed to hit my 15 vs. her 6. I ended up not to because she made note to the whole table that I was going to do it again. I lost my guts, (just what if I was wrong?) And she made it ! (She had 3,6,2,8. I could have a push.) Any way, there came an insurance bet. Just because of some past event that leaded me think she had a BJ, I went insured with my 3,4 total 7. The whole table went nuts. As I was not putting up the right amount of money, she gave me a hard time and one of the couple who were next to me, telling me to the face 'how stupid' I was to waste my money. While the man began to criticize me, he was elbowed to stop because that was the time they all found out she did have BJ. Everyone lost except me. I could tell that she wasn't very pleased, she would rather that I was wrong. So her revenge came while someone doubled ($150 x 2) and got 21. I didn't really misplay my hand (oh, only NBJ players know) and she also got 21 (instead of 20). The whole table roared (whenever this happens, they blame someone, right ?) To make the matter worst, she pointed it out that was my play which caused that...

Despite all the hardship I was winning at the end of the shoe. However, when the first shoe was back. I wasn't able to bet with the game signature. I lost so I stopped again. This time she wasn't that nice to me, she told me if I stopped, I would have to leave the table for some else to play. (There wasn't even a ghost around, plus everyone was losing, if anyone had eyes could see wouldn't choose this table to play.) So I left the table as I had enough of that and I was beginning to lose my focus.

The result of this morning play ? Well, I lost one unit ! ( And I didn't cry.)

Zenwin.

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