THE UBT IS COMING … ARE YOU READY?
by LV Tournament Pro
LV Tournament Pro is the pseudonym of a skilled advantage blackjack player and an experienced tournament player who has won over $400,000 playing blackjack tournaments. He competed in the World Series of Blackjack in 2005 and also finished first in a monthly qualifier in the Las Vegas Hilton’s Million Dollar Blackjack Tournament. He was also selected to play in the Ultimate Blackjack Tour, which pitted the top blackjack players against the top poker players in a unique blackjack tournament that will air on TV in 2006. His peers consider him to be one of the strongest blackjack tournament players.
It is widely believed that the casino game of blackjack, as we know it, originated in France. In the seventeenth century, the first recorded mention of this game is purported to be "vingt-et-un" ("twenty and one"). We do not know the precise origin of the game, and there are only guesses as to what was the true beginning of this mystifying game. Blackjack is thought to be a descendant of other similar French games, but as games of chance are built upon precise and well-balanced calculations, this seems unlikely.
Blackjack is a very popular card game in Russia, where it is traditionally called "21" or "Ochko" ("the hole"). Other known names for blackjack are "pontoon" and "California Aces". The English name "Blackjack" comes from the original French game where a player was rewarded for receiving a Jack of spades and an Ace of spades as the first two cards. The first card to draw was the Jack, and spades are black, hence the name blackjack. The 3:2 payout is believed to have originated in the United States to draw interest to an already established game and make it more beneficial to the player.
There has been only one other change in blackjack prior to the emergence of the Ultimate Blackjack Tour ("UBT"). That change was the casinos’ attempt to heavily swing the odds in their favor by paying 6:5, as opposed to 3:2, on a blackjack.
Even though blackjack tournaments are a different entity from live blackjack play, the previously established playing rules made televised blackjack tournaments not very exciting for viewers. The reason is because skilled players rarely made big moves until the last five hands of the round so the beginning and middle-play in a tournament round was slow and usually boring to uneducated players. This forced viewers to sit through a bevy of repetitive minimum bets that either put them to sleep or encouraged them to change channels.
With the advent of UBT, which is the brainchild of Russ Hamilton (the 1994 WSOP Champion), the issue of boring blackjack tournaments is over. UBT offers an exciting, non-stop, action game in every round of play that will keep viewers on the edge of their seats as they watch players go all-in to prevent from being eliminated. With the UBT format, players are forced to sink or swim from the very first hand to the last.
The key to the UBT tournament are the four different elimination hands that occur during the 30-hands. The player with the lowest bankroll after each elimination hand is completed is sent packing. This forces players to constantly jockey for position, trying to avoid elimination on hands 8, 16, 25, & 30.
The elimination format actually helps to level the playing field for less experienced tournament players. In addition, the UBT format has the option to allow players to use a secret bet and/or action card to either hide how much they intend to wager or what playing decision they will make on the hand. Also, the rules specify that when a player doubles down, the draw card is dealt face down so no one knows what the card is. All of these rules take away the big edge an experienced tournament player might have over a less experienced player so that essentially anyone has the chance to walk away with the top prize in a UBT tournament.
What it boils down to is this. You may not be able to match Michael Jordan on a basketball court, outplay Tiger Woods on the back nine, and you’ve probably got no shot knocking one out of the park like Reggie Jackson, but when you play the UBT, you’ll have the opportunity to play heads-up against the cream of the crop in the blackjack and poker world with a good shot at beating them. You could wind up playing against the two ten-time WSOP bracelet winners, Phil Hellmuth and Johnny Chan; WSOP bracelet winner Annie Duke; the incredible poker players Devilfish Ulliot and the amazing Antonio "The Magician" Esfandiari; plus 2005 WSOB Champion Ken Einiger and world renown gambling and tournament expert Anthony Curtis, plus many other poker and blackjack celebrities that you see on TV or read about in newsprint.
The filming of the Second Season of the UBT Tour begins in Aruba from September 23, 2006 to October 01, 2006, and then continues on October 28, 2006 to November 4, 2006 in St. Kitts, then on to the world’s largest casino, Foxwoods, in November 2006. You’ll have the opportunity to become a part of blackjack tournament history by joining the UBT Tour, either through online satellites, free-roll tournaments on www.playubt.com, or casino-sponsored tournaments around the world. All of these events offer you the chance to win your seat to play in the main events in the UBT Tour, playing with the most feared blackjack and poker players in the world.
The rest of the UBT Tour dates have not been finalized, but they promise to be exciting, worldly, and are "the fastest way to a million dollars". What the UBT is offering players is the chance to play in a world-class blackjack tournament without the ever-pressing "entry fee" requirement that most casinos force players to pay to have the privilege to play. These requirements also often include having to put in a set number of hours of play, earn a set number of slot points, lose a minimum amount of your hard-earned cash, give a minimum amount of theoretical win to the casino through table-play, and many other unpleasantries.
With the UBT, there are no such ridiculous requirements. You simply pay your entry fee with no obligation to anyone and you enjoy yourself in exotic destinations playing against the best-of-the-best poker and blackjack players. But wait, that’s not all.
The fee to play in the UBT tournament in Aruba & St. Kitts, which will be shown on CBS-TV, is $2,700 ($2,500 goes into the prize pool) plus there will be two $540 tournaments ($500 in prize pool) that may be filmed and shown on a cable network. Plus there will be multiple one, two and three-table satellites that will be held daily during the week.
So, think about it. You have the golden opportunity to win some serious cash and be on national TV for all your doubting friends and family to envy and admire. Don’t let this opportunity pass you up because what happens on the UBT…is for the entire world to see. Are you ready for your close-up?
For more information on The Ultimate Blackjack Tour, please go to www.playubt.com.
May all your aces have a little paint on them and I look forward to playing with you in the UBT.
LV Tournament Pro
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