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Pushing the House
by Larry Edell

Pushing the house means getting a better deal on a Craps bet than the one that is offered at the table. It is an often used “secret” of professional crapshooters, but is relatively easy to accomplish—if you know how. And you don’t even have to be a black chip bettor—you can bet red chips and make some extra money by taking advantage of this little known practice!

In this article, you will learn how to push your pass line odds, your come odds, your don’t come odds, and your buy bets! Why bet like everyone else when you can push the casino to give you a much better deal?

How You Can Push Your Pass Line Odds
A frequently recognized example of pushing the house occurs when you are playing at a double odds table and a six or eight is the point. Technically if you have $10 on the pass line, you should only be able to place $20 behind in odds. If you win, you’ll receive $10 for your flat bet and $24 for your odds (at 6:5). However, most casinos will let you place $25 in odds behind a $10 bet resulting in an odds payoff of $30. So your odds bet is $25 instead of $20 ($5 more) and you’ll win $30 instead of $24 on your odds. Here, you’ve pushed the casino for an extra $6! And, if you are just a $5 player you can still give it a go. If you have $5 on the pass-line and six or eight becomes the point (in a double odds game) you can technically place only $10 behind the line. But it doesn’t cost you anything to ask the friendly dealer if you can place $15 in odds behind your six or eight! Then if it hits, you’ll win $5 for the flat bet and $18 for the odds—a total of $23 instead of the $17 you would have won previously. This simple push is worth $6, and you can use the same technique on other points as well!

If you have a $5 flat bet and five or nine is the point, you can normally place $10 behind the line. This time ask if you can place $20 in odds. Then if the five or nine hits, you’ll win $40 instead of $25. Your new strategy just pushed the casino for an extra win of $15!

Finally, if the point is four or ten and you have a $5 line bet, ask if you can again place $20 in odds—you’ll get $50 instead of the $25 you would win with $10 odds. Now you’re pushing the house for $25 more!

How You Can Push Your Come Odds
When you’re on the come line, you should always ask the dealer if you can add more odds than normal. You have nothing to lose by doing this, whether your flat bet is $5 or $50. If you are at a 2X odds casino and you have $10 in the come box and the point is five (or nine) you are allowed to take $20 in odds. If your number hits, you win $30 for the odds (at 3:2) plus $10 for the flat bet or a total of $40. But you can ask the dealer if you can add $30 odds (instead of $20) and then you’ll win $45 for the odds plus $10 for the flat bet—a total of $55! You just pushed the house for an extra $15!

How You Can Push Your Don’t Come Odds
You can do the same thing on the don’t come line. If you’re at the same 2X odds casino and have a $10 don’t come bet and the point is four or ten, you can lay $40 to win $20 in odds, so your total win would be $30 ($10 plus $20). Ask if you can lay $50 in odds (to win $25). So, instead of $30 you’ll win a total now of $35 ($10 plus $25)—that’s $5 more! Not much, but it’s better in your pocket than the casino’s!

How You Can Push Your Buy Bets
In order to buy a number, the casino requires a 5% commission or vig. For example, if you were to buy the four or ten for $40, you would pay a $2 vig (5% of $40) and win $80 at 2:1 odds. That $2 vig, however, would turn into $3 if you bought the four or ten for $60. But most friendly dealers will let you buy the four or ten for $50 (instead of $40) and still pay only the $2 vig! Buying the 4 or 10 for $50 will return $100 (at 2:1) instead of $90 (at 9:5)! You’ve just pushed the house for an extra $10!

On the five and nine, you will pay a $3 vig (rounded up from $2.50) on a $50 bet. But you can ask if you can buy the five or nine for $70 and still pay only the $3 vig! Buying the 5 or 9 for $70 will return $105 (at 3-2) instead of $98 (at 7:5)—that’s $7 extra cash that you didn’t have before!

As you can see by these examples, it’s easy to push the house once you have the dealers on your side!

Cultivating the Dealers
Since so much depends on the friendly dealer’s reactions to your requests, it may pay to cultivate them a little by tipping them. I like to bet $1 hard way for them whenever an even number is the point. The hard four or ten will pay $7, while the hard six or eight will pay $9. Then when it hits, I always ask the dealers to let it ride, so that my $1 tip can turn into either $49 (on the four or ten) or $81 (on the six or eight). Be friendly—call them by the name on their name tags, and make small conversation whenever possible. It’s easier for them to say yes to a new friend than a complete stranger! Keep in mind that when you help the dealers, the dealers will help you in return. And it never costs to tip a dealer—it always pays!

Pushing the House
All you have to do is ask a friendly dealer if you can make a certain bet for a certain amount. Some bets are easier to push than others and it won’t take long before you discover what each dealer and each casino is likely to allow. Pushing the house is a real method being used by many experienced crapshooters to maximize their winnings and minimize the house’s edge. You will be increasing your odds bets to the absolute maximum the friendly dealers will allow. By doing this, you are pushing the house—getting a maximum return from a minimum investment! Give it a try the next time you play Craps! Remember, all you have to do is ask!

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