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Blackjack Insider Newsletter, Dec. 2004, #59



By Kenneth R. Smith

Blackjack Info

Ken Smith hosts the popular website and the new site for tournament players Ken has written tournament articles for Blackjack Confidential magazine. You can subscribe to his free email newsletter for blackjack players at


Imagine being able to participate in a blackjack tournament whenever youíd like, twenty-four hours a day, with no travel required. Based on the current state of online blackjack tournaments, I think we could see that happen within the next twelve months. Itís an exciting time for avid tournament fans.

Online blackjack tournaments arenít new. In fact, theyíve been around almost as long as online casinos. I competed in my first online tournament back in 2001, and Iíve played quite a few of them in the years since. However, what most online casinos consider a tournament might differ from what you expect. It turns out there are a lot of different ideas out there. Sometimes these events award prizes based on total winnings in a set amount of time, or over a particular number of hands. Other casinos choose to use a formula that awards prizes based on percentage of winnings hands. Still others use a formula based on percentage of dollars won compared to your buy-in. The competitions can be free or they might have an entry fee. You might play with real money, or you might play with funny-money chips in the casino.

There are also some casinos that offer contests they call Ďtournamentsí that donít deserve the name. For example, Iíve seen many contests that award prize money to the player who makes the most bets in a week, or wagers the most dollars. Clearly, these contests donít do much but pad the pockets of the casino. Itís a complicated world out there, so I want to shed some light on whatís available, and where you can find todayís best opportunities for online tournament play.

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