I just learned that all casinos are required to provide a player with an annual win/loss statement on request. This is to provide a player with an estimate of his net win or loss at the casino for the calendar year, in case you need to write off gambling losses against a W2-G win. The casinos seem to take this regulation pretty seriously, since I see that every $100 buy-in needs supervisor approval, as does every color-out at the end of a session. The floor supervisor enters the data at the console (usually attached to the table), and everyone is tracked.
So yesterday, I was playing Ultimate Texas Hold’em (UTH) as usual, at Harrah’s, on my usual route of the four north San Diego county casinos (Harrah’s, Pauma, Pala, and sometimes Pechanga). I’d been playing exclusively UTH at these casinos for about three months now, logging in about 300 hours total. I’d been doing well, and I knew I wasn’t just donating to the casino (i.e., ATM -> UTH -> casino). So, I just decided to see if I could get my 2009 Win/Loss Statement at each of these casinos.
As far as discount gambling goes, I’m claiming success. On average, I should lose about $3.50/hr ($.12/hand), so my 300 hours in 2009 should have totaled to a $1000 loss. So I’m way ahead of the mean here. Also, from what I see at the tables, I’m sure most players don’t want to see their win/loss statements for the year. That’s because most people are afraid to 4x raise preflop according to basic strategy. They’re constantly checking monsters like ATo, KJo, 66, QJo, etc. Then they still check their pairs on the flop, I guess waiting for their hands to improve at the river. They make so many mistakes, they’re probably giving the house an average 10%+ edge. They never bet their hands, and they forfeit the huge +46% Play bet edge. I just see people play passively, re-buying until they bust out. And these people are regulars, who see me all the time, but they won’t stop checking. Maybe if they read this post, they’ll start betting.
I’ve been doing fine playing UTH over the last two weeks, and I’m also finding Six Card Dealer Bluff fun and fair to play. I’ve noticed that in UTH I often have a decision to call at the river with 2nd nut kicker on an unpaired board. It looked at little weird to call sometimes, especially against a board with a possible flush. So I tried out a few cases, and found that I shouldn’t call with 2nd nut kicker unless there was no possible flush, or if both my cards played. I updated this to the main Ultimate Texas Hold’em page, and the basic strategy card.
I also checked that calling 1x with 5th nut kicker against a double-paired board is okay, as long as the pairs are 7′s up or better. Otherwise, for 6′s up, you need 4th nut kicker to call.
Finally, I found that on the flop, you can bet 2x with nut kicker, as long as you have a gutshot straight draw.