10 Gamblers Who Beat The Casino
A trip to the casino is usually both an exhilirating and hopeful proposition. The unassuming public gets drawn in with the sounds of ringing slots, bright lights, free alcohol, and the odd chance of striking it rich. Everyone knows that the games are always slanted in the casino's favor, and big winners are incredibly rare - but there's always that sliver of hope.
Today we bring you 10 stories of people who didn't wait for lady luck to grace them with her presence, but went out and dragged her with them into the casino, kicking and screaming. Some using ingenious strategies, some with insider help, and some with healthy doses of what can only be described as chutzpah.
Golden Nugget mini-baccarat tournament
Sometimes simple observation can help a gambler gain an advantage, and such was the case in April of 2012. A group of friends noticed that the same hands kept coming up, time after time. More gamblers soon caught on, eventually taking the Golden Nugget for nearly $1.5 million.
The reason was not any sophisticated system - the card company had simply delivered the decks without pre-shuffling them, so the same sequences would always come up. The casino, certain that it was being scammed, not only refused to pay out $1 million of their winnings, but also decided to sue them for the rest of the money. Luckily 4 months later the judge decided to side with the winners, ruling that they had not cheated in any way.
Casinos spend a lot of time watching the players and dealers, but you can be sure after this they'll spend some time watching their suppliers as well.
Don Johnson, blackjack king
Exploiting the greed of casinos will certainly put you on their bad side, and that's why Don Johnson (no, not the Sonny Crockett one) is banned from almost every casino in America. As a high-roller, Johnson enjoyed a number of rules negotiated with the casinos, such as being able to split or double down more than a usual bettor, and the house standing on a soft 17. What's more, he negotiated compensation on his losses, with the casino sometimes compensating up to 20% of his losses. By combining these new rules with blackjack strategy, Johnson was able to win over $17 million, including almost $6 million in a single night from the Tropicana in Atlantic City.