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John Grochowski

John  Grochowski
John Grochowski is the best-selling author of The Craps Answer Book, The Slot Machine Answer Book and The Video Poker Answer Book. His weekly column is syndicated to newspapers and Web sites, and he contributes to many of the major magazines and newspapers in the gaming field. Listen to John Grochowski's "Casino Answer Man" tips Tuesday through Friday at 5:18 p.m. on WLS-AM (890) in Chicago.

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Odds on the Don't

25 Jun 2020

By John Grochowski
A recent discussion of don’t pass plus laying odds as a low-house edge craps method brought a response from Roy, who said he’s played since the 1980s

“I was taught by my uncle to skip the odds on the don’t side,” Roy said. “Odds just water down your advantage when you have the edge.

“Don’t talk to me in terms of edge percentages. They include the comeout, when the house has the edge and you can’t lay odds. Tell me in dollars and cents why I shouldn’t skip the odds.”

It is true that don’t players have an edge once a point is established. The danger zone is the comeout, when there are eight losing combinations and only three winners.

Laying odds allows those who bet more than table minimum to keep up their total bet while reducing exposure to that comeout danger zone.

Imagine a series of 55 sets of 36 comeout rolls – 1980 comeouts in all. In each set of 36, each possible combination occurs once.

At a $5 minimum table, imagine you bet $10 per comeout on don’t pass for a total of $19,800. I bet $5 on don’t pass and back each point by laying $6 in odds. My wagers total $17,820.

Once points are established, I’m betting a little more than you. My $5 on don’t pass plus $6 in odds are $1 more than your flat $10 on don’t pass. The difference in total wagers is that I’m betting less when the house has its edge.

Let’s check your average outcome first.

  • You lose on the 330 7s and 110 11s.

  • You win $10 and keep your $10 wagers on each of the 110 3s and 55 2s, for a total of $3,300.

  • You keep your $10 wagers on each of the 55 12s for $550.

  • There are 275 6s and 275 8s. You win 300 times and lose 250. On each of the 300 wins, you win $10 and keep $10 for $6,000.

  • There are 220 5s and 220 9s. You win 264 times and lose 176. The $10 wins and $10 wagers kept amount to $5,280.

  • There are 165 4s and 165 10s. You win 220 times and lose 110, and the wins plus kept bets give you $4,400.

At trial’s end, you have $19,530. The house has kept $270 – the 1.36 percent house edge on don’t pass.

Now my results.

  • I also lose on 7 or 11. With only $5 on the line, I’m left with $1,650 on the winning 2s and 3s and $275 on the pushes on 12 – half your totals.

  • On the 275 6s and 275 8s, I risk $2,750 on don’t pass and $3,300 in odds. On the 300 winners, I keep $11 in wagers and collect $5 in winnings on don’t pass and $5 on the odds. My total of wins plus keeps is $6,300.

  • On the 220 5s and 220 9s, my total risk is $4,840. On the 264 winners, I keep $11 in wagers and claim $5 in winnings on don’t plus $4 on odds. My total is $5,280.

  • On the 165 4s and 165 10s, I risk $3,630. Each of the 220 wins bring $11 in kept bets, $5 in don’t pass wins and $3 in odds wins. My total is $4,180.

That brings my total to $17,685 of my original $17,820. The house take is $135 – only half your losses. I’ve wagered 90 percent as much as you but by liming exposure on the comeout, I’ve lost only half as much.

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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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