In popular card games such as blackjack, there will be a select group of personalities, who by their own efforts have redefined and shaped the future of this card game. These are people who left their indelible mark in the game of blackjack not only in the amount of cash prizes that they have won but also at how they were able to inspire and influence other blackjack players.
In recognition for their enormous contribution and extraordinary talent, the select few are now inducted in the Blackjack Hall of Fame. Included in this list of topnotch players of blackjack are individuals who have significantly contributed to the success and popularity of the card game not only among gaming aficionados and casino regulars but among those who do not know how to play the card game as well. Their life story and highlights of their career should be part of our learning process if we truly want to become a successful blackjack player.
Edward O. Thorp
The story about blackjack is never complete without Edward O. Thorp. Thorp, a mathematics professor at MIT, introduced the concept of using mathematical permutations and statistical probabilities in the game of blackjack. He is the brains behind the popular concepts and strategies like card counting and blackjack odds. He personally tested and used his theories and wrote and published what could be considered as one of the most popular books about gambling of all time – Beat the Dealer.
Peter Griffin, a mathematician by profession, tried to continue from where Edward O. Thorp has left off and developed a more complete and improved blackjack strategy. This improved blackjack version can be applied to any set of blackjack rules and number of decks. While most card game experts focused on the use of blackjack strategies, other personalities like Griffin concentrated on theories to improve the chances of winning a card game. He has written and published 2 famous books and several technical papers for mathematical publications and journals. Most of his works focused on the analysis and application of theories on the blackjack table. These theories developed by Griffin are still used by blackjack players to this day.
Ken Uston is another inductee to the Blackjack Hall of Fame who is recognized not only for his successful stint on the blackjack table but also of his popular teams and books on blackjack strategies. Uston can be considered as one of those select few personalities in gaming circles who have built a solid reputation of being a professional and intelligent blackjack player. A graduate of an Ivy League School, Uston was also one of the more prominent Big Players of the Blackjack team of Al Francesco. Read more here
Another prominent name in the list of Inductees to the Blackjack Hall of Fame is Stanford Wong. He is known for developing a detailed description of a highly popular blackjack method and strategy that is specifically designed for blackjack games that consists of 4 decks.
Wong was born as John Ferguson in 1943. He is the author of the popular book on blackjack entitled “Professional Blackjack.” He started to dabble with card games while he was still at Stanford University. He gave up his flourishing career in the academy to concentrate on what he loved most – becoming a respected and successful card player. His most important contribution is the card counting system known as “Wonging” or back-counting.
Arnold Snyder is one of the most respected experts in the casino gaming industry and is recognized as one of the top ranking players when it comes to blackjack. He is credited for quite a number of books on blackjack, making him not only an accomplished blackjack player but also a major contributor in the evolution and development of this popular casino card game. He is also the editor of the Blackjack Forum, a quarterly blackjack journal which has been in circulation since 1981.
Considered as one of the more prolific authors in the original list of inductees to the Blackjack Hall of Fame, Snyder has authored and published popular books like Big Book of Blackjack, Blackbelt in Blackjack, Blackjack Formula and Blackjack Wisdom.