Odds can be in favor of craps players who bet the 'Don't'

The Times Of Northwest Indiana
Odds can be in favor of craps players who bet the 'Don't'
Wild Casino

The vast majority of gamblers who play craps bet that the dice will pass. In other words, they hope that the shooter will make the point before rolling a seven.

There is another dimension to the game known as betting the "Don't," sometimes referred to as the "dark side" of this fascinating table game. When you wager on the Don't, you're betting that the dice won't pass. You're hoping the shooter will roll a seven before the point number.

Be forewarned that betting the dice won't pass is definitely not a team sport. That's why Don't bettors generally stand inconspicuous at the table, usually at one of the corners, patiently waiting for a seven to be rolled. When their victories come, they must celebrate in silence.

Gamblers who exercise this betting option shouldn't be looked upon as casino mercenaries. The ability to capitalize on both hot and cold streaks is one of the true beauties of craps. No other casino game affords you that luxury.

When you're getting beat hand after hand at the blackjack table, there's no way to bet that the dealer won't bust. All you can do is pick up your chips and retreat. You can't win at a cold blackjack table, but you can win at a cold craps table.

Betting the Don't is opposite of betting the dice will pass. You'll win even money on the come-out if the shooter rolls a 2 or 3 (12 is a push). You lose if the roll is 7 or 11. Any other number is the point. In order for you to win the bet, the shooter must roll a seven before repeating the point.

The Don't on the come-out roll is a tough hurdle to jump. Eight combinations of the dice make you a loser and only two a winner. But if you survive that, the odds of winning your bet shift dramatically in your favor. If the point is 4 or 10, the odds are 1 to 2 in your favor; if it's 5 or 9, 2 to 3 in your favor; 6 or 8, 5 to 6 in your favor.

Compare that to a pass line bet. On the come-out roll, eight combinations of the dice make you a winner and only three a loser. If the point is 4 or 10 the odds are 2 to 1 against you; it it's 5 or 9, 3 to 2 against you; 6 or 8, 6 to 5 against you.

The casino knows that once a point is established, Don't bettors are in command of the game's mathematics. That's why you can pick up the bet at any time if you so choose. The Pass line, on the other hand, is a contract bet. Once you place it and the point is established, you can't pick it up.

Betting the dice will pass or betting that they won't represent two of the best bets in the casino. The house edge against a Pass line bettor is 1.41; with double odds it drops to just 0.60. The house edge against a Don't bettor is 1.40; with double odds it dips to 0.59.

The majority of craps players cheer for the shooter to make the point. It's human nature to want to play the game that way. But there's nothing wrong with considering a Don't bet once in a while, but only if you're willing to be a maverick.

If you learn to play the game from both sides, you are taking full advantage of the freedom of craps and the opportunity to win even when the dice are cold.

BLUE CHIP: The complimentary entertainment at Rocks Lounge this weekend starts Friday (June 17) with The Red Roses, featuring alternative and indie hits, followed on Saturday (June 18) by Boys Meet World, a Milwaukee-based pop/punk tribute band. Both shows begin at 9 p.m. The 3 p.m. matinee on Sunday (June 19) puts the Rock Lounge spotlight on the country/rock band Drinkin on Sunday.

FOUR WINDS: “Summer Cash Winnings”, a promotion exclusive to the New Buffalo destination, takes place Friday (June 17). Hourly drawings will be held from 5 to 11 p.m. (EDT) for $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, and $10,000 cash prizes. W Club members receive one complimentary entry through the day of the promotion by visiting a kiosk at any Four Winds Casino location. Earn additional entries playing slots, table games and live poker.

This week’s summer pool party series for Four Winds New Buffalo Hotel guests has an “Under the Sea” theme featuring Live Mermaids at 8 p.m. along with musical entertainment by Chad Thompson at 5 p.m. and Kovacs & Company at 10 p.m. Enjoy food and drink specials, the pool, two fire pits and The Pool Bar. All times are Eastern.

HARD ROCK: Lots of entertainment this weekend, headlined by Wanda Sykes’ appearance at Hard Rock Live on Friday (June 17). Tickets for the 7 p.m. performance to see the Primetime Emmy Award winning comedian are available at ticketmaster.com. The complimentary entertainment at Council Oak Bar Stage will feature Mike Wheeler Band on Friday and Mississippi Heat on Saturday (June 18). Both shows start at 8 p.m. Country Music Fridays welcomes Jo Dee Messina to Hard Rock Café Stage at 9 p.m. On Saturday it will be Without U2 also at 9 p.m.

HOLLYWOOD JOLIET: It’s hard to believe but the property which opened as Empress Casino Joliet in 1992, is celebrating its 30th anniversary. It was the first state sanctioned casino to begin operations in the greater Chicago area. All-day celebrations will be held there today. Guests are invited to swipe their mychoice player’s club cards at any promotional kiosk from 7:30 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. to claim 30 free entries in the $40,000 “Blast of Cash” drawing on June 24. From 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. 88 Hops House is featuring 30 percent off your meal. At 10 a.m. enjoy a complimentary cookie, courtesy of Smallcakes and Creamery of Joliet, and at Noon there will be distribution of free commemorative T-shirts. A photo station will be open all day for selfies in honor of the occasion.

Opinions are solely those of the writer. Reach him at jgbrokopp1@gmail.com.