How to Deal With "Bad" Players

I've already told you a little bit about the effect - or lack of same - of bad players on your game. Maybe you didn't believe me.

Maybe you did.

If you did, read on. I'm going to tell you how to deal with the situation when you have bad players with you at the blackjack table. Once again, this is assuming YOU are not the bad player. Because if you are, the solution is to shore up your own game. If you're not, listen up.

First, let's define what a "bad" player is. For our purposes, it's someone who does not consistently play proper Basic Strategy for blackjack. If you're a perfect Basic Strategy player, you are going to have a tendency to pay attention to the decision these people make.

You may analyze those decisions or even take the liberty of commenting on them, right then and there (and don't make believe you don't know what I'm talking about). Please resist the temptation to do this.

You see, when this happens, you are going to become distracted. Your concentration will be dulled. If you're even more lacking than that in the area of self-discipline, you might even get frustrated. Stop it.

If you don't, you're going to wind up making mistakes, and where it's most likely to happen is not necessarily when you make a Basic Strategy decision off your initial two-card deal, but rather when you're put in a position where you have to make a decision on a multi-card hand.

So for instance, you'll be dealt a 5 and a 7 for a two-card total of 12. The dealer has a three showing. The Basic Strategy dictates that you hit that 12 ONE TIME against a 3. But you've been watching people hit 14's and 15's.

You follow Basic Strategy and draw. You get an Ace. Now, if you're thinking about the bad moves everyone else made, how terrible it was, and let it affect you, you may wind up hitting your hand again, if for no other reason than that you are distracted and confused.

Don't let yourself get confused. Don't school anyone. Don't be anyone's keeper. Don't care. Mind your own business, not everyone else's.

By Charles Jay

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