Blackjack Myth: Avoid Choosing the Last Seat at the Table

This one kind of goes along with that whole myth about the player at third base being able to effect the outcome of the dealer’s hand. According to this myth, any smart blackjack player will avoid sitting and playing in the last seat at the blackjack table.

Mostly this blackjack myth came about because of the third base affecting the outcome of the dealer’s hand. Because people honestly believe in the third base blackjack myth, they started believing that the third base seat should be avoided.

But there are some contentions and just plain common sense that argue against this blackjack myth.

My first, and favorite, if no one sits in the seventh (better known as third base) chair, then it means that whoever is in the sixth chair would be the one to affect the outcome of the dealer’s hand—that is if you believe that myth. So if everyone then avoids the seventh and sixth chairs, it comes down to the fifth. And then the fourth.

You can see where I am going with this. And you can see that by avoiding the seventh chair is silly.

Another bit of common sense, and this one applies to both the third seat affecting the dealer’s hand and avoiding the third seat. Everyone’s plays have an impact on the deck, regardless of who hits or stands because everyone has a choice, and their choices effect whether a card is taken from the deck or not.

The third base myth came about because players wanted to be able to blame someone when they lost because the dealer won. And the whole avoid the last seat at the table came about because no one wants to be blamed for everyone losing.

In reality, we all need to understand that one person does not make or break the dealer’s hand. Each of us is responsible for our own hands. And, despite being a game of skill, there is a certain amount of luck involved in blackjack. You play your hand the best way according to your blackjack strategy, and if you win, great, and if not, better luck next time.

And please, stop avoiding the last seat just because of some myth.

Blackjack Myth: Assuming the Dealer has a 10 Hole Card

One of the biggest myths in blackjack is to assume that the dealer’s hole card is worth 10. You are bound to hear of this idea of assuming there is a 10 hole card and that you should build your blackjack strategy on it.

But the truth is that this can actually hurt your blackjack odds more than help. It does not matter if you are playing blackjack online or in a brick and mortar casino, by assuming that the dealer has a card worth 10 as his hole card you are setting yourself up for some bad blackjack odds.

The myth goes that by assuming that the dealer’s hole card is worth 10 that you will be prepared for the worst case scenario. As in if the dealer is showing a 4, you would assume that he has 14. But in truth he could have anything from 5 to 15. You cannot know or anticipate what he has. And it is foolish in blackjack to assume that you can.

Assuming that you can anticipate that the dealer’s hole card is worth 10 can hurt you to the tune of a 10.3% hit to your blackjack odds. Assuming is not worth it.

This is why you should not believe this blackjack myth.

Only 30% of a deck is worth 10. This means that there are four times as many other cards in the deck than there are 10 value cards. For you as a player this means that your chances of the dealer having a card worth 10 for a hole card are only 3 in 7.

As you can see the odds are in favor of the dealer’s hole card NOT being worth 10. And because the odds are against the hole card being worth 10—and because the player’s odds will take a 10.3% hit for assuming and playing off of that assumption—you should never just assume that the dealer’s hole card will be worth 10.

Play according to basic strategy. It will give you better odds in online blackjack and regular casino blackjack than if you were to assume that the dealer’s hole card is worth 10.