Revisiting Regressions

One of the strategies many of us learned from the gambling legend John Patrick is the regression move. Simply put, a regression move is a play designed to lock up an early profit on a shooter and position the player for a larger win should the hand continue. It’s a strategy I use at some point or another – and often multiple times – in virtually every session I play. While it does not give you a mathematical edge over the house, it does let the disciplined gambler play from a position of power. It is an especially effective way for precision shooters to play.

Let’s look at a player with a respectable SRR of 1:8.0 using the V-3 pre-set. For the sake of this example, let’s assume he keeps the dice on axis 100% of the time. Not only does the player know that on average, he’s going to get eight to ten tosses in before the devil jumps up.  He also knows the distribution of numbers that will likely roll. Out of sixteen possible on-axis combinations, two add up to seven, six add up to six or eight, four add up to five or nine, and four add up to three, four, ten and eleven. Our astute player knows his advantage is on the inside numbers, and he bets those numbers in proportion to his advantage, with three chips each on the six or eight for every two on the five or nine. He knows that he may go point-seven, or he may shoot the lights out with a forty-five number hand. But over the long haul, if his tracking is correct, he will average eight tosses after the point is established. To err on the conservative side, he’s elected to play a strategy that includes a regression to lock up a profit after the fourth post-Come Out toss. His regression involves coming down off the five and nine and reducing the size of his bets on the six and eight. He will “same bet” subsequent hits until he gets over his SRR “hump.” If the roll extends beyond roll eight he will press every other hit in an up and out strategy.

Now let’s plug some numbers in and see how the hand plays out. Let’s give the player $1000 bankroll in a $10 – 2X odds game. He plays $10 on the Pass Line and establishes the six as his point and takes $20 in free odds. He places the eight for $30, and the five and nine for $20 each. Remember, he sized his place action according to his advantage, placing more emphasis on the six and eight, where he has the greatest edge with the V-3. Now let’s play out the hand.

Six is the point.

Second toss – rolls 8. Shooter collects $35. $90 action on the table. $55 at risk.

Third toss – rolls 9. Shooter collects $28. $90 action on the table. $27 at risk.

Fourth toss – rolls 3. No change in bankroll. Shooter comes down off the 5 and 9. Regresses the eight to $12, and regresses the free odds behind the Pass Line to $10. $32 on the table. $31 guaranteed profit for the hand.

Fifth toss – rolls 10. Same action.

Sixth toss – rolls 8. Same bet. Lock up an additional $14. $32 action on the table. $45 guaranteed profit for the hand.

Seventh toss – rolls 5. Same action.

Eighth toss – 7 out. House locks up the $32 action. Player colors in a $45 profit.

Of course, had the player had his bets “off” on that last toss or had taken his action down before the seven showed he would have increased his bottom line by $32, for a win of $77.  But that’s the subject of another article altogether.

Locking up a profit early is a smart way to play. If you limit your action on random rollers and bet larger  when you have an advantage, an occasional regression will go a long way toward improving your craps bottom-line.