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Streaks, Trends and Opportunity
Part III

"Ah, women…they make the highs higher, and the lows    more    frequent." -Friedrich Nietzsche-

The idea of looking for streaks and trends at a craps table is so that our profits are higher and our losses are less frequent.

What or Who are Trend-Spotters?

Trend-Spotters are serious craps players who track streaks and trends at the tables, and ONLY bet on the BEST of them.

Today we are looking at WHAT they do, HOW they do it, and how YOU can adopt some of their profitable methods for your own use.

How Trend-Spotters Make Their Money

The thing about mastering streaks and trends is that the best and longest of them are very obvious, while the ones we “hope” are a streak or a trend usually turns out to be just a short and disappointing irregularity of random outcomes. 

Trend-Spotters learn to read the trends, and separate the real ones from the mere pretenders.  At that point, they only bet on the best and strongest of them, which minimizes their risk and maximizes their profit.

The challenge is finding ENOUGH strong trends (in one direction or the other), and a sufficient amount of Hot or Cold streaks to make their effort worthwhile and to reward their patience. 

Who’s Throwing?…Who Cares!

It is important for you to know that most Trend-Spotters don’t care WHO is throwing the dice.  They only care about the dice-outcomes and how they fit within the current trend or streak that is happening at the time.

A few of them believe in and understand Precision-Shooting, but most are not even aware of the skill.  However, ALL of them realize that there are some people who seem to throw the dice more consistently, or more rhythmically, or more carefully than the majority of other players.  That is one of their “triggers” to watch a particular game more closely.  But again, they are only interested in whether or not they can capitalize on ANY of the results, regardless of who is throwing them.

So they seek out the MOST CONVINCING and MOST COMPELLING trends and streaks, and then start loading up their money on the layout.  They ignore (as far as betting is concerned) everything else.

All they care about is determining whether the strength of a trend or the potency of a streak is worthy of betting on. 

Finding ENOUGH Strong Trends 

The chief complaint of the guys who play this way, is the fact that they spend so much of their time looking for and waiting for suitable betting opportunities.  Each one will tell you that they spend about 90% of their time searching for prospective bet-situations, and the much smaller 10% balance of their time actually involved in a game as a bettor.

This of course leads us to the best ways to find and exploit streaks and trends.

More Casinos + More Tables = More Opportunities

If most of your play is centered around one casino, then your prospects may be limited.  A player that has to travel for a couple of hours to reach a gaming jurisdiction where there is only one casino and one or two open tables, has much less choice than a player in say, Atlantic City, Tunica County, Biloxi/Gulfport or Reno.  If on the other hand, that single casino has nearly two dozen open tables like Foxwoods; then it is a whole ‘nuther ball of wax.

The point is, that multiple open tables give you more exposure to the wild swings and fluctuations that are inherent in the game.  Those are the situations where the most money can be made.   They are the bread-and-butter of Trend-Spotters.  More tables simply means that you’ll see more Hot hands and more Cold hands, over a normal course of the day. 

It also means that you will see a whole lot more of the business-as-usual choppy conditions that are the middle ground no-mans-land that is the bane of most players.  So you’ll spend a lot of time just watching and waiting.  The more tables that you can observe, the better your chances of finding and betting on the extreme fluctuations will be.

Of course, you have to be attuned to what is happening at as many of the other tables as possible to really see the big picture, and to be able to take advantage of the warm or cool trends when they come along, and wherever they are.  

Knowing that exploitable streaks and trends are happening, means NOTHING if you don’t know how to take maximum advantage of them, with minimum risk to your bankroll.

So let’s take a look at HOW to find them:

Survey the Tables

Are they busy?  Is there one table that is packed and the other one barely occupied?  If the table-minimums are the same, that may be a good indicator that something is happening at one, and something completely opposite is happening at the other.

The best Trend-Spotters don’t really care which way the dice are going.  As long as he can make a winning bet that will take maximum advantage of that specific trend, he is happy.   For a primer on how to survey a craps pit, you may want to have a look at my And The Survey Says.... article.

Survey the Most “Expressive” Players

Some people just can’t hide their moods or emotions.   Some people’s facial expressions and body language tell easy to understand stories. Are they grumbling or smiling?  Is it so cold that even the liars are complaining?  Is it so hot that it looks like they are going to wet themselves?  

Ask a couple of guys how the table is performing now, and how it has been in the past 20 or 30 minutes.  Their answers are valuable in not so much WHAT they say, but HOW they say it.  It’s kind of similar to asking a child with crumbs on their face, if they stole a cookie.  You generally know what the answer will be, but you want to gauge their reaction and rationalization as much as you want to hear the content of their answer.

The players that you ask those questions to can be used later on as a “visual cue” when you are at a different table.  By looking for the most animated and “involved-in-the-game” types of players, you should be able to tell from a distance almost EXACTLY how good or how bad a remote table is doing.  These “visual cues” are strong and reliable indicators of developing opportunities.  In “Part IV” of this series we look at that aspect much more closely.

Another reason that a Trend-Spotter will ask how the table has been performing over the past 20 or 30 minutes, is because he understands that there’s a certain ebb and flow to the cycles that the dice go through.  It is this naturally occurring flow or rhythm that the Trend-Spotter looks for. 

The middle-ground choppiness where the table consumes most of its time is the hardest place to make money, so he avoids those phases, and instead seeks out the more radically extreme ends of the sequence.

Survey the Most “Intelligent” Players

You have to keep in mind that some players see things much differently than others.  In that case, you should also seek out the most intelligent or at least the most intuitive of your fellow players to get a good read and interpretation on what is happening. 

This approach is most useful if you are thinking about joining their particular table.  They may not be the most “expressive” as far as visual cues are concerned, but they may be MORE in tune with the general temperature and trend-direction of the table, instead of living and dying by dice-outcomes that affect only THEIR bets on the layout. 

Therefore, those players can be a much better barometer for a broad-spectrum reading of the table.  For more on this subject, my Patterns Exists...But Do They Mean Anything? article addresses that concern in greater detail.

Survey the Rail

Take a look at the amount of money in the rails.  Are most players running on empty?  Are any of the “regulars” who normally bet big down to a few crumbs?  Are one or more players digging into their pockets or wallets for fresh cash to re-load their ammo bay?

Conversely, if a lot of players have many, many chips of various denominations in their rack, you’ll want to find out when the money was made, and whether that trend is currently continuing, or if the profit was coopered together on a recent, but now-deceased streak.

Survey the Layout

Where are the bets, and how much is on them?  How concentrated on one or more betting areas are they?  Is there a bunch of Place bets on the 10?  Is everybody betting on the Horn, or are several players making a select number of the same Hop bets?  Is anyone (or EVERYONE) betting heavily on the Hardways, or are a good number of players on one particular type of bet?  These are indicators that something good may be in the offing.

Don’t be Mislead

If you are playing in Detroit or another similar urban market, and you only see one person (the shooter) on the Pass Line, while the rest of the players have a huge numbers of bets on the “Props and the Hops” (all the center action), that DOES NOT necessarily mean ANYTHING other than its just another normal day in the ‘hood. 

Some casinos are well-known for attracting the Field ‘n Prop Posse like moths to a flame.  The astute Trend-Spotter knows enough to filter out false indicators, as well as knowing how to judge the road-signs of real opportunity.

“Can I Check Your Notes”

There are a number of guys who chart and track every roll of the dice.  The Trend-Spotters befriend those note-takers because the fastidious and detail-oriented players, have the most accurate record of what has been happening at the table in the very recent past.  

While writing down each and every roll does not in and of itself help or hinder a player, it does provide the Trend-Spotter with vital clues into current leanings and possible developments.  I wrote extensively about that in my CHART This and Track THAT! article.

Who’s Head is on a Swivel?

If players at one table start looking around at other layouts with an inquisitive gaze, it usually means that they are looking for an exit visa and a more positive change from their current state of affairs.  Simply, they are looking for greener felt-pastures. 

It may be that their particular table is starting to shiver and is obviously developing a “cold”, so they want to move to a warmer climate.  On the other hand, the guy whose head is on a swivel could be a Darksider that is getting slaughtered by an emerging “warm front”.  The better you are able to determine WHY someone is displaying a particular body-language at a distant table, the better you’ll be able to get an early read on an emerging streak or trend.

It is the ability to “read” many tables at the same time which increases your chances of getting in on something good BEFORE everyone else clues into it.   By seeing the early warning signs, you’ll be able to position yourself at the most opportune table BEFORE everyone else gets shut out of the betting action because the table is too full.

In “Part V” we’ll be taking a very close look at the Body Language indicators that Trend-Spotters are looking for. 

The more tables that you can watch, the wider the spectrum of streak-probabilities and profit-opportunities you will find.

The Weather-Man Cometh

A weather-man or a smart, intuitive farmer can tell you what is PROBABLY going to happen weather-wise in the very near future.  While they are sometimes TOTALLY WRONG, they are MOSTLY CORRECT in their predictions. 

Both the farmer and the weatherman learn to read the indicators.  The weatherman may use high-tech Doppler-radar, the 17 NOAA satellites, and the countless remote land-based weather-tracking stations.  The farmer may look at the moisture-content in the soil, the flight patterns of certain birds, the call of the whippoorwill and the chirp of the crickets; the direction, strength and gusts of the winds or the way the clouds are forming on the distant horizon; and the way the leaves are turning into or against the breeze as his indicators of what is to come.

Trend-indicators aren’t always right, but they signify what will probably continue to happen, so you are best advised not to bet against them.

Still to Come…

In “Part IV” of this series, we’ll look at:

       Understanding the ebb and flow of the game-cycle.

       More ways to find hot shooters or cold tables, depending on your preference.

       Reading more “visual cues” from distant tables.

       How the dealers and Pit-Bulls can indicate emerging trends.

       The phenomenon of Ice-Cold to Fiery-Hot transitions.

       When to get off the beach and into the water.

       When to get out of the water and seek the safety of dry land.

       How Precision-Shooters fit into the Trend-Spotters equation.

       Exactly HOW Trend-Spotters take advantage of the streaks and trends when they come along.

         And of course much, much more.

Until then,

Good Luck & Good Skill at the Tables…and in Life.


The Mad Professor

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