The amateur gambler vs the trained professional player:

This is the start of a series of articles on this subject on the public forum. My purpose is to let prospective students know what they are in for – what they need to learn – to make an enlightened judgment whether or not they want to undertake this money making opportunity.

Let’s take the amateur first:

More than 99% of players are amateurs. They see Baccarat as a form of gambling. Typically, they walk into a casino, sit at the first open seat they find at a table in the denomination they prefer. From there they guess based on the shoe history right there on the tote board. There is little or no reason for the amount of their bets except that if they are behind, they tend to bet bigger to catch up. Amateurs pay close attention to how the other players are betting. Since they are all doing the same thing, they are all often betting on the same side.

Amateurs have no clue that guessers only win 43% of their hands on average.

But the casinos know this full well! Therefore casinos purposely design shoes to thwart guesses. They see that as their job. Obviously casinos are VERY good at their job. They win at seemingly impossible rates in a 50/50 game.

Look, if the game were, in fact, random, players would win half the hands and lose half the hands. That’s simple math. In that case there would be no Baccarat.

Why do I call Baccarat a 50/50 game? After play 1, every hand is either an Opposite or a Repeat. An Opposite is when the opposite side wins relative to the last play. A Repeat is when the same side wins again – it repeats. The odds of an Opposite or a Repeat are exactly 50/50 on average – Pure mathematical fact.

So Ellis, are you saying that if we simply flipped a coin, we would win half the hands instead of only 43%?

Yes, exactly, on average, in the long run – while guessers (99%+ of all players) only win 43% of the hands – much to the casino’s delight. Flipping a coin would already drastically improve your game BUT it would not achieve our purpose.

In Baccarat our purpose is to win MORE than half the hands. The table odds already get us to 50%. Training can get you to 55 – 57%.

That doesn’t sound like much Ellis??? No, and it isn’t. But several of my students have won over a million dollars with only a 55 – 57% hit rate.
And BTW, you should always record your hit rate each shoe because what you track you usually improves.

Units won per shoe is another thing the Pro tracks as well as PA – (Player Advantage – units won / units bet.)

My best trained players achieve a double digit PA – 10% or more. To put that in perspective, the very best BJ card counters only achieve a 1/2% PA. Hell, we tip more than that! PA is the best measurement of performance there is.

So a blogger, trying to prove me a fraud a couple years back, challenged me to play Atlantic City with him watching. I played 6 full shoes at 2 different AC casinos to an overall 26% PA – probably a world record for 6 shoes. Ha, he began following my bets with bets of his own but with $25 chips and made $1500 dollars of his own. He blogged later that I was a “gifted” player. I’m not a “gifted” player! I’m simply a skilled player. And when I teach you, I teach you EVERYTHING I know. I leave nothing out. I keep no secrets.

What you need to learn to win at Baccarat:

First, you need to STOP looking at the game as gambling. You need to look at it professionally as a search for opportunity. You need to see the game through the eyes of a Pro.

You no longer walk into a casino and sit at any table and guess:

1.) You learn tote board reading – how to find the easiest table to beat.
2.) How to use your SAP count to determine the best system to play.
3.) How to play each of 6 systems.
4.) How to bet in accordance with the quality of the game you found.
5.) Practice, practice, practice.

I’ve played tens of thousands of games in the casino over the last 30 years. BUT, I’ve played even more games at home – practicing.

But Ellis, it’s easy to play a shoe after you have seen it.

When I play shoes for you to study, the SAP count determines the system I play within the first few hands. I simply play that already established system by its exact rules. I’m not guessing. I’m following a system precisely. Once I establish the system, I simply follow the rules come what may. I NEVER guess.

I have a solid reason for each and every bet. I seldom switch systems – perhaps 1 shoe in 10. Then I follow our cash mgt rules to determine where to quit. The progression I play is based on my hit rate in the shoe at hand. THAT is how to play Baccarat professionally. That is what you must learn.

Next, I’ll be showing you some shoes how an amateur plays them vs how a trained Pro plays them.

Just a word here about flat betting: THAT is what you do BEFORE you learn how to play. Show me a shoe you win 5 units flat betting and I’ll win +20 in the same shoe or even better by selecting the best progression. We are not there to fool around – We are there to get the money!

To be continued…

5 comments Categories: Main Page

5 thoughts on “The amateur gambler vs the trained professional player:

  1. Ha, there will be public members who will take what I’ve said here and try to go out and play. Guys, I’m just giving you an idea of what’s on the inside. Your chances of teaching yourself how to win are ZERO. If Bac were that simple there would be no Bac. You need a professional teacher. But ANYONE of normal intelligence with the proper devotion can learn how to beat Baccarat. I’ve been beating this game for 30 years. I teach you everything I know on the private Baccarat forum. I answer ALL your questions. I even invite private Bac members to play with me. But you need to do your part – study and practice with ALL the tools I teach you.

  2. OK check out the thread Amateur vs Pro Examples on the public Baccarat forum. Hover Public Forums and Videos at the top of the page and then hit Public Baccarat.

  3. There are some guys at BTC who are trying to say that BTC is a flat bet forum while CFC is a progressive betting forum. I wish this were true. It would make life a lot easier for me. But it simply isn’t true by any stretch. There are plenty of guys at BTC who bet progressions. I know because I taught them for many years. And there are plenty of guys at CFC who still flat bet while developing their system skills.

    It is perfectly fine with me if BTC wants to limit their play to flat betting. That makes them VERY easy to beat. A flat bettor is like entering a boxing ring with your hands tied behind your back.

    1 would like to show you a very practical demonstration of what we have discussed thus far that highlights the difference between flat betting vs progressive betting, and then highlights System Selection, and finally highlights Exploiting with the 345.

    Let’s take a common example of 20 plays – about 1/4 of a full shoe.

    P1231231232 (our short cut method of posting shoes)

    Long form: P BB PPP B PP BBB P BB PPP BB

    Note that this is ten Players and ten Banks and contains nothing unusual – all 1’s and 2s and 3s. I’ll start all examples at play 2 so they are equally comparable. I can’t post played shoes on this thread but I can post them on the public forum on a thread I will call Amateur vs Pro Examples. But I CAN post the results here. Keep in mind that this is only 20 plays or 1/4 of a shoe.


    A flat bettor betting Opposites scores -1.
    A 123 progression bettor betting Opposites scores +5.

    So already, we’ve demonstrated a 6 point advantage to progressive betting in only 20 plays – actually only 19 plays because we didn’t bet play 1.

    But now let’s add our proper System Selection skills:

    OUR SAP count is telling us High 2s and 3s right from the beginning. That is always OTB4L. Single 1’s, 2s and 3s are what we call OTB4L events. And this column of 20 plays is ALL single 1’s, 2s and 3s.

    So now let’s play it OTB4L with a 1,2 progression. Now it scores +13 with a highest bet of only 2 units.

    Great, but now let’s add Progression Selection. At play 4 we are already winning twice as many bets as we are losing and we get better from there. This definitely calls for our safest Exploit progression the 345.

    We score +27 in a quarter of a shoe !

    Still want to Flat Bet? Flat Betting is for untrained amateurs. See that?

    I’ll post this column on the new thread for all to see in black and white played out all 4 ways. Take a look!

    So let’s play

  4. I agree Ellis,

    Flat betting is like taking 2 thirds of your money and throwing it down the sewer.

    At lease do a 1-2 loop. If your confidence level is 0, just sit back and do paper bets for enjoyment.

  5. Professional Attitude:

    Your attitude is critically important. Once you are trained Bac is no longer a game for you. It’s a job. We teach you how to sniff out the most beatable tables and how to win the most at the right table. Your tote board search is much like casing a bank you intend to rob. Yep, think about it! That’s exactly what you do. Case the joint. Once you know what to look for, Bac is MUCH easier, far safer, and far more profitable. First find the right table then play the right system – the system that your SAP count tells you to play. Then adjust your progression to your hit rate.

    But Ellis, you just told us that Bank or Player is 50/50 and then you pay commission???

    It is 50/50 if you flip a coin. BUT, all shoes have a bias – sometimes more than one. Your SAP count is like a guardian angel It points out the bias AND its strength. Then your system changes the odds in your favor.

    Take a shoe, for example, that ends up 70% Repeats and 30% Opposites – Very common. Your O/R count is tracking that bias throughout the shoe.

    What were your odds every time you bet Repeats? They certainly weren’t 50/50, were they. AND that is exactly what both your O/R count and your SAP count are telling you to do!

    And when you are winning 70% of your hands, you don’t flat bet. That would be pure stupid! You likely started with the 123. But then your counts reveal the exact strength of the Repeat bias. So does your hit rate. So you move up from 123 to 234 or better yet U1D2B2. (Up 1 when you lose, down 2 when you win, basing at 2.) We call that The Plow and for good reason.

    So OK The Plow does well. But your 70% hit rate is screaming at you to Exploit. So you move up to the 345 – the safest Exploit progression there is.

    I just showed you one of Jordan’s shoes. Sure, Jordan did well! BUT he didn’t make 71 units, did he. I played OTB4L 345, because that was the system my SAP count TOLD me to play and my hit rate demanded the 345. 71 units just following OTB4L every play.

    Ha, so one of the BTC guys, Oz, flat bet “my” shoe and scored +21.

    First, it wasn’t “MY” shoe, it was Jordan’s actual shoe from the night before – right Jordan?

    Second, Oz says he doesn’t play MY way anymore. Fine, but then why did he play OTB4L. That’s MY way, not his. Why didn’t he play it HIS new way?

    Third, why would anyone brag about making “21” units in a 71 unit shoe???

    To be continued…

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