There have been many people over the years who have grabbed the interest of the gambling public with their remarkable skills in a particular game. Ken Uston was one of those people, and he has been hailed as one of the most remarkable blackjack players of all times, if not the best in known history.
Uston was a man of superior intelligence, having graduated high stool at the age of 16 and then attending both Yale and Harvard, and majoring in business. He did extremely well in the world of business, until, in his thirties, he discovered one of the first books to bring the theories and strategies of blackjack to the masses: Edward Thorpe’s Beat the Dealer: A Winning Strategy for the Game of Twenty One.
Uston was absolutely fascinated with the book and studied it frm cover to cover. Then, using the book as his basis, he developed his own theories and strategies and eventually came to the conclusion that if he wanted to get far in the game, he would need to create a team of talented card counters and hit the tables of Atlantic City and Vegas.
During the 1970′s, Uston and his team of counters visited Las Vegas for the first time and won $27K in just one hour. Seeing this as a turning point in his life, Uston quit his job and became a professional gambler, with him and his team taking on the biggest stakes in Vegas . The Sands management eventually banned them from the casino after one particularly good session when Uston won $200K, after which time, Uston felt that it was time to move to Atlantic City.
Eventually, he was banned from there too and Uston decided that if he was going to continue with his new job, he’d have to ensure that he was legally able to. As such, in 1982, he took the casinos to the Supreme Court, which ruled that card counting does not constitute cheating and he could not be legally banned from these establishments.
Nevertheless, the casinos got one up on Uston and his team, by changing the rules of blackjack and making card card counting virtually impossible. He ended his days as a professional gambler, having won over $1 million in a decade and earning himself a victorious Supreme Court ruling in the process!