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Jerry Stickman

Jerry  Stickman
Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in dice control at craps, blackjack, advantage slots and video poker. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps dice control classes and Golden Touch Blackjack's advantage classes. He also teaches a course in advantage-play slots and video poker. For more information visit or or call 1-800-944-0406 for a free brochure. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at

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Differences in buy bets

11 Aug 2018

By Jerry Stickman
Hi Stickman.

I just returned from a week in LV (went to G2E) and just now read your article which I get via Casino City Times.

I spent the better part of a day hunting for a decent craps game.

I normally play in MS where the vig on Buy bets is collected only upon a win. LV was a culture shock in that regard. I won't play where the pirates do that. Bad enough they all collect the Lay upfront. MGM said they'd only charge me on a win but couldn't play there as they scent the air and that raised holy hell with my sinuses.

In my long and arduous trek I inquired about the policy on Buy bets at the Tunica casinos. Most allowed me a Buy on the 5/9. Also, the buy on the 4 and 10 was automatic when the bet was $25 – up to $100. After that, I'd have to pay first. I even had a suit at Bally's try and tell me the Buy was worthless on the 5/9 when we discussed their policy.

That dude was seriously math-challenged and he was like you and me in that we are all a bit long in the tooth.

Recently you wrote an article on craps etiquette and there was one thing not covered and it has always been in the back of mind to ask you about it so I am.

Shooter whips the dice down the table and it careens into my stack of chips on the DP. A few get dislodged. Do I restack (touch them) or do I wait and hope the dealer sees it and tidies up? I'd do it immediately but don't wish to be accused of adding chips to what should be a guaranteed winner (at that point in time). And I suppose a Pass Line bettor would not want to be accused of removing a chip or two from their stack which probably would be a potential loser.

Thanks for any reply directly or in a future article.



I am glad that you took my advice about looking for the best buy bets. Casinos in Mississippi and Tunica generally allow buying the 5 and 9.

Most Las Vegas casinos do not allow a buy of the 5 or 9 – and those that do make you pay the vig up front. In that case you are better off forgetting about the 5 and 9 and simply place the 6/8 or buy the 4/10. If you really want to get on the 5 and 9, come betting is the way to go as it only has a 1.4% house edge.

All of the casinos that I play in Las Vegas have automatic buys of the 4 and 10 with vig taken on wins only when buying for $20 or more. I have gone up to the table limit and the vig is only on a win. I have never heard of the $100 threshold that you mention.

To your question about restacking dislodged chips – I would wait for the dealer to restack them. If he (or she) seems oblivious to the situation, I would try calling their attention to it. However, if the dice are being pushed to the shooter and my chips had not been restacked, I would quickly restack them myself. Generally you will not have any problems with the dealers if you place a small bet for them every so often.

Now I am going to take exception to a comment of yours – the one where you implied being math-challenged and old go hand in hand. I hope you are not calling me math-challenged – or OLD! I am just kidding, of course; however, I don’t feel any older than I did when I was in my 20s and 30s. Age is a state of mind – and many suits (especially at Harrah’s properties it seems) are just not interested in doing anything that might favor the player a little. It is sad but true.

Andy, you seem to be making all the right moves in order to get the most from your gambling bankroll. Keep up the good work.

May all your wins be swift and large and all your losses slow and small.

Jerry “Stickman”

Jerry “Stickman” is an expert in craps, blackjack and video poker and advantage slot machine play. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. He authored the video poker section of Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo, and Pai Gow Poker! You can contact Jerry “Stickman” at

This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at

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