Should you always spit aces in blackjack?

In blackjack, if you are dealt a pair of aces you have the option of splitting your cards into two new hands. If you take this option, you need to place a second bet, equal to your original stake, to cover the second hand. You are dealt one – and, in most casinos, only one – additional card on each split ace, you usually cannot double down after split and, if you are dealt another ace, you cannot split again.

According to basic blackjack strategy – which describes the mathematically correct way to play any hand – you should always split a pair of aces, regardless of the card the dealing is showing. A pair of aces technically makes a ‘soft’ total of 12 which, granted that tens and court cards make up 16/52, or 30.76%, of a standard deck of cards, is a difficult starting hand. Notwithstanding the fact that you need to double your stake, and therefore your risk, creating two hands in which the first card is worth 11 points is one of the strongest plays in blackjack; it is, in fact, one of the few moves that has a positive expectation against any dealer upcard.

Any ten or court card – or four of the 13 possibilities – will yield a total of 21, against which the best the dealer can do is push, while a 7, 8 or 9 – or another three of the 13 possibilities – will yield a total of 18 or better. The average winning hand in blackjack is 18.5 so, while there are also six possibilities whereby you can win only if the dealer busts, the attraction of splitting aces is clear to see.

Who was ‘Nick the Greek’?

The late Nicholas Andreas Dandolos, commonly known as ‘Nick the Greek’, who died on Christmas Day, 1966, at the age of 83, was a celebrated Greek American professional gambler in the early to mid-twentieth century. Dandolos reputedly won and lost millions of dollars during his lifetime. He once said, “The next best thing to playing and winning is playing and losing. The main thing is the play.” Although he was a millionaire for most of his life, at the time of his death, in Gardena, California, Dandolos was virtually penniless and reduced to playing small-stakes poker.

Born in Rethymnon, Crete on April 27, 1883, travelled to the United States, alone, as a 18-year-old, and settled in Chicago. Initially living on an allowance of $150 a week, provided by his family, he moved to Montreal, Canada, where he proceeded to win $500,000 by gambling on horse racing. On his return to Chicago, he lost all his winnings on cards and dice, but would soon become famous for his willingness to risk huge sums of money; in 1926, for example, he lost $797,000 to Arnold ‘the Brain’ Rothstein in a single hand of poker.

Legend has it that, in 1949, or in 1951, according to which account you choose, Dandolos played a marathon heads-up poker match against Johnny Moss at the Horseshoe Casino, run by Benny Binion, and reportedly lost $2 million. However, it is doubtful if any such match actually took place. Jack Binion, son of Benny, explained many years later that Dandolos and Moss did play a poker match in 1949, but at the Flamingo Casino, in private, rather than in public, and not for five months straight, as suggested in the original version of the story.

What is doubling down in blackjack?

If you find yourself on a break from the best online slot machines for real money, boning up on your blackjack strategy might be the way to go. In blackjack  ‘Doubling down’, also known to casino staff as ‘reaching deep’, is an option whereby a blackjack player, finding himself or herself in a favourable position after being dealt two cards, can double his or her initial stake in return for one, and only one, additional card. Some variants of blackjack allow players to double down on any total, while others only allow doubling down on totals of nine, ten or eleven. Of course, doubling down is not without risk, but conventional wisdom – or, in other words, basic blackjack strategy – dictates that doubling your initial stake is advantageous, statistically, in certain situations.

For example, if your first two cards equal a ‘hard’ ten or eleven – that is, any combination, not including an ace, which adds up to ten or eleven – doubling down is the mathematically correct play if the dealer shows anything between a two and a seven, or an eight, if your hand totals eleven. Similarly, if your first two cards equal a ‘soft’ sixteen, seventeen or eighteen – that is, you hold an ace and a five, six or seven – and the dealer shows anything between a two and a six, doubling down is the best play. Other examples of situations when you should double down include when you hold a ‘hard’ nine against a dealer’s upcard between two and six or a ‘soft’ thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen or seventeen – that is, an ace plus a two, three, four, five or six – and the dealer shows a five or six, otherwise known as a ‘bust card’.

Best Casino Games To Play For Beginners?

Online casinos are becoming more and more popular as the years go by, with competition at its peak with the market being flooded with multiple competitors and affiliates attempting to entice us punters in with promotional and sign up deals. However, if you are looking to start in the casino world as a beginner, there are some easier games than others to get started with and we delve into them a little further below.

If we were to recommend any type of casino game to a beginner, then we would say to start off with slots. Slots are the easiest games to play if you are fancying a start in the gambling world due to the limited amount of skill required to play; in fact, they virtually require no skill at all with just the press of a button and hope that your luck is intact. The other good factor from Slots for beginners is that there are thousands of variants online with virtually all of them having different ways to play with multiple different themes and styles to play from.

Want to step it up a little bit from slots and play something that requires a bit more skill? Why not try out Blackjack which many people are familiar with from family card games, but this time will be played for real money. Trying to match 21 as close as you can against the house is a skill-based card game but something that beginners can start to get familiar with quickly. Another benefit of Blackjack is that the dealer has a low-house edge meaning the chance of winning for us beginners is a lot higher compared to other games such as slots.

Looking to find the perfect casino for you to attempt your newfound games on? Here at they have all of the casino’s games on offer on this list with some of the highest quality to offer. Not only this, but also some of the best sign-up offers for all new customers but on a limited time so head over now to claim your reward.

And finally, wanting to advance further into the casino market, then roulette is the main game played in the casino and can still be played even at beginner level. Mainly a game of luck, but

one of the more entertaining games to play as there is no feeling like watching the wheel spin and your number landing. There are multiple ways to win with roulette as well with the likes of Red/Black or even just to select chosen numbers.

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