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Best of Larry Edell

Gaming Guru

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Everything Should Have A Reason

7 February 2000

The Crapshooter
© 2000 by Larry Edell

My friend Bob is a conservative straight shooter and never does anything without a reason. Except when he plays craps.

As we headed towards the tables one day, Bob was grousing about our wives' current shopping expedition. They didn't need anything in particular, so why they would rather go shopping than play craps was beyond him. He maintained that shopping is just one of those things that people like to do for no particular reason at all. He of course would never do anything like that.

He was still mumbling about having reasons for everything when we got to the tables and colored in. I put $10 on the pass line and the shooter obliged by coming out with a new point of six.

"Dollar hard six," Bob called out as he threw a white chip toward the stickman.

"Huh? What kind of bet is that?" I asked, adding odds to my pass line bet.

"Just a dollar, doesn't hurt anyone."

"Know what the vig is on that dollar?"

"I know, it's high, but so what, just a dollar."

The shooter rolled an eight. I placed the eight.

"Let's look at the house advantage for a sec. On hard ways it's either 9% (on the 6 or 8) or 11% (on the 4 or 10). On a six or eight place bet it's 1.5%. Pass line is 1.4%"

"Yeh, so?"

"Well, look around. How many craps tables do you see?"

He counted. "Um, ten."

"Do you think that the casino built any of these tables with a 1.5% profit?"

"What do you mean?"

The shooter rolled a five, a ten, a nine, and another five. I should have been on the come instead of talking. "The casino depends on making a certain level of money from its games in profit. Let's say that its breakeven point is 5%. This means that if it consistently makes over 5% it does well, and if it makes consistently under 5% it does poorly."

Bob shook his head and shrugged. "So what does that have to do with me?"

The shooter rolled an eight! "Wow, I won my place bet! Look Bob, the casino really doesn't care if you win because it makes a percentage of every bet, and that's where most of their profits come from. But they don't get significant profits from pass and come bets because the edge is too low. They get most of their profits from hard ways, field bets and proposition bets."

A cheer went up! The shooter threw a six! It was soft, so Bob lost, but he looked more thoughtful than disappointed. "So you're saying that even if I won my hard way bet the casino wouldn't mind because of the built-in 9% edge? But the bets you won don't make a significant enough profit for them?"

"You got it." I said, collecting my chips, "Maybe that's why dealers always call out 'Any Hard Ways' or 'Anyone on the field?' instead of 'pass or come with maximum odds!'"

Bob grinned. "Okay, so let's say my hard way bets are the main suppliers of the casino's statues and waterfalls. Can't I do things for fun, just because I want to?"

I smiled. "Oh. Kinda like going shopping?"


For more information about craps, we recommend:

How To Make Your Living Playing Craps by Larry Edell
Tina Trapp's Guide to Craps by Tina Trapp
Beat the Craps Out of the Casinos: How to Play Craps and Win! by Frank Scoblete
The Captain's Craps Revolution! by Frank Scoblete
Sharpshooter Craps Audio Cassette Tape (60 minutes) with Frank Scoblete
Winning Strategies at Craps! Video tape hosted by Academy Award Winner James Coburn, Written by Frank Scoblete
Larry Edell

If you would like a free copy of "The Crapshooter", the only newsletter devoted exclusively to casino craps, just send a stamped envelope to The Crapshooter, Dept. RGT., Box 421440, San Diego CA 92142. We'll also send info on our books "Make Your Living Playing Craps" and, "Tina Trapp's Guide to Craps", as well as a free catalog, and a special free offer!

Purchase Larry's book, "Make Your Living Playing Craps" available online here.

Larry Edell Websites:

www.TheCrapShooter.com
Larry Edell
If you would like a free copy of "The Crapshooter", the only newsletter devoted exclusively to casino craps, just send a stamped envelope to The Crapshooter, Dept. RGT., Box 421440, San Diego CA 92142. We'll also send info on our books "Make Your Living Playing Craps" and, "Tina Trapp's Guide to Craps", as well as a free catalog, and a special free offer!

Purchase Larry's book, "Make Your Living Playing Craps" available online here.

Larry Edell Websites:

www.TheCrapShooter.com