Originally Posted 2/8/07 – Boyd Gaming expands garbage “blackjack” in Las Vegas

The Bear Growls:  Boyd Gaming expands garbage “blackjack” in Las Vegas

February 8, 2007  

Michael Gaughan, the former operator of Coast Casinos, is well known for having paranoid casino managers and absolute intolerance of players with any skill whatsoever.  But to his credit, he did not rip off the gullible public with garbage variations of blackjack.  Though Coast’s blackjack rules weren’t the greatest, at least the games offered were normal double deck and six-deck games.

Coast merged with Boyd Gaming. Subsequently, Mr. Gaughan left Boyd Gaming. He is now independently operating the South Point casino (formerly South Coast).  Shortly after Mr. Gaughan’s departure, Boyd brought garbage games to former Coast properties Gold Coast, Orleans and Suncoast. Orleans now has a 6 to 5 single deck with a cut card, a garbage game made even worse by the cut card effect — a truly sickening ripoff. Also now wasting space there and at Gold Coast are double deck Superfun games. Suncoast’s offerings now include a disgusting six-deck Superfun game.   Shame on Boyd Gaming.

NOTE:  Boyd Gaming spokesman Rob Stillwell did not respond to a request for comments.



  1. wouldn’t it make more sense to explain why 6/5 bj is bad? people who know why don’t have any use for this “growl” but people who don’t understand already why it is bad may require some form of an explanation. i, for one, have no idea what you mean that the cut card makes the game a sickening ripoff. Are you saying that the dealer only uses half the deck or what?

  2. Good point, thank you. These growls were originally prepared for a sophisticated audience consisting primarily of advantage players. The scope has now widened. I will make an effort to make understandable to the average casino patron or casino employee what is obvious to the skilled player.

    Two links that explain the 6 to 5 ripoff:

    Blackjack Games to Avoid – BJ21.com

    6:5 Blackjack from Blackjack-Scams.com

    Using the cut card on the ripoff 6 to 5 single deck game makes it even worse. It creates the “cut card effect” which further hurts all players at the table:

    Cut Card Effect definition

    Cut Card Effect: When the cut card appears, it signifies the last round of play. The cut card causes the dealer to shuffle after an approximate number of cards are dealt, instead of shuffling after a specific number of rounds. Using a cut card favors the house in terms of expectation. It affects both Counters and Non-Counters, irrespective of their betting strategies. A player who plays a game with a fixed number of rounds will do better than if he/she plays in the same game but with a Cut Card instead. …

    Four Queens in downtown Las Vegas is an example of an unethical casino that uses the cut card to make its real (not 6 to 5) single deck game worse than it appears to those who do not understand the cut card effect. To my knowledge, Four Queens is the only casino in Nevada offering single deck blackjack (not 6 to 5 garbage) that uses a cut card. None of the casinos in northern or northeastern Nevada use it.

    There is no legitimate reason to use a cut card on a single deck game. Unless Four Queens management thinks its dealers are too stupid to count the rounds, the only explanation is that the cut card is used to deceive patrons. Shame on Four Queens.

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