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Blackjack Insider Newsletter, Jan. 2005, #60


We have an exclusive for BJI members. Max Rubin was kind enough to allow me to publish this year's Preliminary Round Test that was given to the 104 guests at the 2005 Blackjack Ball. You can take the test to see how you would have done against some of the world's best blackjack players. You can also view the guest list and Agenda in my Inside the Blackjack Ball report.

Frank Scoblete is holding another Gambler's Jamboree on May 21 and 22 at the Windsor Casino Hotel in Ontario, Canada. I will be speaking on blackjack. All BJI subscribers can get a 10% discount to this exciting event. Read Frank Scoblete's Atlantic City Report for details.

We had a typo in the recent Blackjack Insider Lite on the date of the premier airing of the World Series of Blackjack on the GSN network. The first GSN episode will air on Friday Jan 21 at 10 pm EST. For details on this first round including the background of the five world class players that competed see my Inside the World Series of Blackjack report.

Last year subscribers to BJI answered a survey on ethics in gambling. The results of the survey can be seen on the show, Las Vegas What Would You Do If, on the Travel Channel. I also appear on the show. Next airing is 1/15/05 at 4 pm (EST).

This expanded issue of BJI is loading with great articles and reports. Read about Eliot Jacobson's first bad experience with variance. LV Tournament Pro got on his soap box (again) and offers his opinion on the state of blackjack in Las Vegas and those casinos that see fit to bar players from blackjack tournaments. Our Insider, The Suit, offers advice to advantage players on how to act toward the floor and fellow players to avoid the casino radar. Check out JPB's and Barfarkel's Las Vegas trip reports and Alene Paone and Frank Scoblete's report on blackjack conditions in Atlantic City. Kenneth Smith made a mistake on the last hand in a blackjack tournament and reports what happened and what he would have done differently. If poker is your thing, read Bill Burton's article on the most common misplayed hands in Texas Hold'em. Rick Jensen kindly provides BJI subscribers with a discount code for American Airlines flights to Vegas. And finally we've updated our schedule of blackjack tournaments.

I had no success in the recent Las Vegas Hilton and Frontier blackjack tournaments. In both, skilled players on the last hand used surrender in one case and insuring their hand for less when the dealer showed an ace in the other to wind up with more chips than me. A word of advice. If you play tournaments, you'd better bone up on these two potential last hand playing strategies.

If you come across an unfamiliar blackjack term in one of our articles or reports, see our Blackjack Glossary:

E-mail subscribers can also read each month's issue online at our web site: BJI Issue #60, Jan. 2005.

Henry Tamburin


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" Get the inside scoop on this years Blackjack Ball that was recently held at a secret location in Las Vegas plus take the Blackjack Ball Preliminary Test that was given to the 104 invited guests..."

Read Tamburin's complete article.

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"The premier episode of the World Series of Blackjack II will debut on the GSN Network on Jan. 21 (not Jan. 1st as previously published). The five players who competed in this first round were Katya Underhill, Joe Pane, Hollywood Dave Stann, Kevin Blackwood, and Rene Angelil. Read the background of these players and some tips on what to watch when viewing the show..."

Read Tamburin's complete article.

FROM THE INSIDE - Where do you begin? by The Suit

"Let's talk for a moment about playing "UNKNOWN" or "UNCARDED." Listen up advantage players - this is the biggest RED FLAG you can fly. Also, when a Floor comes to your game and puts their hand out to introduce themselves DO NOT be a smart ass and say you don't want to be rated (and give some stupid reason why)..."

Read The Suit's complete article.

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DEALING WITH VARIANCE by Eliot "The Mayor" Jacobson

"You don't really know how much you can handle until you have experienced the worst that life has to offer. At the tables this usually means a series of hands so bizarre and devastating to your bankroll that you swear the gods have conspired to single you out for an enduring and tortuous punishment. Our sins are awash in our busted hands, six-card dealer 21s and buried blackjacks. We come back from the trip and wonder what anyone can say that will comfort us, and then slowly the words rise up, and then we hear ourselves shouting: "Blackjack Sucks..."

Read Jacobson's complete article.


"As we close out 2004 and step into 2005, history tells us that the presiding President of the United States of America will address the nation in his State of the Union address telling us where the nation stands and what direction he wants to lead our country towards. In keeping with tradition and history I would like to give my State of the Union speech regarding the world of blackjack and blackjack tournaments, and where we as a nation of blackjack players need to be in 2005 and the direction we need to take to achieve our goals..."

Read Tournament Pro's complete article.

LAS VEGAS TRIP REPORT- Part 2 by Barfarkel (a.k.a. LV Pro)

"I walked slowly back to the tables, sat down and produced my player's card and bought in for another $300. Things started going nicely. The dealer was busting every stiff she showed. I was up $400 in no time and kept on firing greenies at them. Now treading water, I was still up $350 or so..."

Read Barfarkel's complete article.

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"I was also surprised to find an empty table at the Las Vegas Club with a "real" single deck game that allowed doubling on any two cards (a house advantage of only 0.19%). I started out betting black and the pit watched me like a hawk especially after winning over a $1,000. I decided not to press my luck and cashed out after a half hour of play..."

Read JPB's complete article.

ATLANTIC CITY BLACKJACK REPORT by Alene Paone and Frank Scoblete

"We like Atlantic City in winter. The blackjack games are better. Atlantic City always has good rules, except on those abominable 6/5 single decks, and you should be spanked if you play them. In winter, you will find some $5 tables, plenty of $10 and $15 tables, and the penetration seems better as the temperature drops..."

Read Scoblete's and Paone's complete article.


"In this month's article, I'd like to discuss my mistake on the final hand of the semifinal table. After the countdown I was in great shape, leading the table. However, bad results on hands 28 and 29 left me in a less desirable spot going into the final hand. I had dropped to third place, with two players advancing from this table to the finals. While there were four players still active in the hand, one player was sufficiently far back that we can ignore their chances. Instead, we'll focus on the very close race among the top three..."

Read Smith's complete article.


"What makes poker a game of skill and separates it from most other casino games is that your decisions matter. In poker your decision to bet, call, raise or fold will have an affect on the outcome. Although your objective is to make money, your main concern when you play poker is to always make the correct decisions and avoid making mistakes. You won't win every time you make the correct decision and you won't lose every time you make a bad decision. However, the player who makes the best decisions (fewer mistakes) will win the most money in the long run..."

Read Burton's complete article.


Check out the schedule of blackjack tournaments by region in our Blackjack Tournament Report.

Read the complete article.


"Here are the Texas Tournament discount codes for American Airlines travel to Las Vegas and or Dallas/Ft. Worth for the next five months..."

Read Jensen's complete article.

This issue of Blackjack Insider brought to you by...

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