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Players find up and down sides of streaks at craps and roulette
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Players find up and down sides of streaks at craps and roulette

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For better or worse, streaks happen in casino games.

Craps-playing reader Artie and roulette fan Rosa checked in during May tell of streaks that caught their attention. Artie saw the downside of probability, while Rosa made her biggest roulette haul.

The streaks were unusual and certainly meaningful to Artie and Rosa, but for the casino, they’re part of the normal run of ups and downs. Eventually, all streaks fade into statistical insignificance.

Let’s let the players tell their stories.

ARTIE: I was playing craps with my normal method. I make a pass bet and follow with a couple of come bets. I like to have three numbers in action, all backed with odds.

The casino was moderately busy and there were five other players at my table. I’d just finished a good roll. I made five passes, made some nice money and was feeling pretty good about the world.

The next five shooters all went point-7. No one made any money. There wasn’t even a 7 or 11 on the comeout. Just losers.

A little extreme, right?

The first shooter rolled a 6. Everybody was rooting him on, but no luck. Next roll was 7.

On down the line, another 6 and another 7. Then a 9 and 7, and a 4 and 7.

Barely five minutes after my roll, there was only one shooter left before back around to me.

The fifth shooter was a big burly guy they were calling Jimmy. He had a really nice touch, a big slow arc that would hit the wall and come to a dead stop on the first bounce. Nobody had left the table yet, but everybody was talking about a break.

Jimmy’s first roll was an 8, just like you’d hope. Next roll looked good out of his hand, but the dice stopped on 4-3. ANOTHER point-7.

I was betting $10 on pass, then $10 on come. I lost all the passes, but won the comes on the 7s.

But I lost my odds. It was a 3x, 4x, 5x table, so I lost $30 in odds on the 4, $40 on the 9 and $50 each on the two 6s and the 8s. In all, I lost $220 in that stretch without a single pass. Awful.

I stuck around to see if I could repeat my good roll. I did make a point to break the streak, but sevened-out right after. Time to leave.

ROSA: I don’t usually bet single numbers. I’m a red or black, odd or even kind of girl.

But the board at the roulette wheel showed the number was 6 the last two times and three of the last eight. Also, twice in the last 10 the number was 18.

My birthday is 6-18, so I said to myself, “Self, if you’re ever going to risk single numbers, this is the time.”

Instead of $10 on red and $10 on odd, I bet $10 on 6 and $10 on 18.

Six came up right away, so I had a 35-1 payoff. Next was an 18, so I won 35-1 again.

I’d never won more than $200 in a session, and here I was with $700. I thought would faint.

I decided to double up for one last bet, $20 each on 6 and 18, and 6 came up again! I won $1,400. I was so nervous, my hands were shaking..

I just couldn’t go on. I took the money and ran. I didn’t even want to know if the streak went on. I just needed to calm down. I may never play single numbers again, but wow, that was exciting.

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