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The Oscar’s Grind progression betting system is one that has been successfully adapted to blackjack, although the system was originally designed for use at the game of craps. It is a positive progression system and is relatively simple as far as betting systems go.

The creator of the Oscar’s Grind system was a craps player known only as Oscar. Some people have theorized that “Oscar” was simply a pseudonym given to a group of players who perfected the system. In any case, the creator of the Oscar’s Grind was looking for a way to manage small and consistent profits at the game of craps. The system first appeared in 1965.

In the gambling world, a “grinder” is a bettor who makes a living by regularly beating the casinos for a small amount rather than a big jackpot. The grinder mentality has been very successful, especially in the game of high stakes poker. At blackjack, a betting system like the Oscar’s Grind works extremely well as long as a player is patient and can put in many hours of continuous play.

Implementing the Oscar’s Grind at the blackjack table is a very simple matter. In fact, it is one of the easiest blackjack betting progressions to master. To begin, a player makes a bet of the table minimum (one unit). The goal is to make a profit of just one unit, at which point the whole progression begins again. If the first hand is a winner, the next bet remains at one unit. If the first hand is a loser, the next bet is also one unit. If this hand wins, however, the next bet is doubled and all successive winning hands merit an increased bet. This continues until the player achieves a profit of one unit, at which point the player starts the progression over with a bet of one unit.

The advantage of the Oscar’s Grind betting system is that it will preserve your bankroll over long sessions at the blackjack table. If a player is patient and sticks to the system, it is very difficult to lose a large amount of money with the Oscar’s Grind.

The disadvantage of the Oscar’s Grind is that it can require many hours of play before the player tallies up a profit that is substantial. Unfortunately, many players do not have this kind of patience. They want to make a large profit quickly.

Because of this, the Oscar’s Grind is a betting system which is well-suited to conservative blackjack players. If you are a recreational player and are just looking to have a little fun at the blackjack table without losing a lot of money, the Oscar’s Grind is a system for you. You won’t win a lot of money with it, especially if you are playing $5 per hand, but your losses will be limited.

On the other hand, if you are lucky enough to hit a rather long streak of winning hands, your profit could be quite substantial. Like all blackjack betting progressions, the Oscar’s Grind was designed to allow a player to profit from streaks. When you are able to string together six or seven winning blackjack hands in a row with the Oscar’s Grind, you will have made a nice sum.

The way to really maximize the Oscar’s Grind betting system at the game of blackjack is to combine it with a good understanding of basic blackjack strategy and the ability to count cards. When you know these things, it is much easier to identify when a winning streak is likely to occur. The advice here is to keep your bet at the table minimum until the true count becomes very high. Once the count is high, start using the Oscar’s Grind to amass a one unit profit and repeat the progression until the deck turns cold.

There is one very important thing to consider when using the Oscar’s Grind. A player must be careful not to allow their losses to mount. Because the goal of this betting system is to only win one unit per progression sequence, a sustained run of losing hands can result in losses adding up. To counteract this, a player needs to set definite win/loss limits when using the Oscar’s Grind. Failure to do this is a recipe for disaster. If you have no win limit, you will be tempted to continue using the Oscar’s Grind and eventually the house edge will eliminate your profit. If you have no loss limit, you may be tempted to play for too long at a table that offers little prospect of a win.

So, before you sit down for a session of blackjack, determine how much you want to win. The amount is really up to you. When you have reached that amount, take a break and return later for another session. By the same token, determine the maximum amount you are willing to lose. If you hit that loss limit, end the session and give the Oscar’s Grind a try on another day.

2 Response Comments

  • RogginsFebruary 6, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    I believe your description of the Oscar method is incorrect. If the hand after a loss wins, the next bet is not doubled it is increased by one. So you increase by one unit after each win until you’ve achieved +1 for the session, then you start again with the minimum bet.

    • countingedgeFebruary 14, 2017 at 6:49 pm

      Roggins, thanks for being a Counting Edge reader and for making a great observation. Hopefully, we can kind of help to sort out what we stated in our article on the topic. First of all, it helps to remember that the Oscar’s Grind system was originally created for the game of craps. It can, however, be applied to blackjack. The problem is that when you explore methods of the Oscar’s Grind that have been tailored to blackjack, you end up with a lot of variations to the craps method. Our article simply presents one of these variations.

      The method we present actually doesn’t call for either a double up or a single unit progression. It states, “all successive winning hands merit an increased bet…until the player achieves a profit of one unit.” Basically what we are trying to communicate in the article is that the Oscar’s Grind is a progression betting system. We are sure you and most of our readers can understand the flaws in many of these progressive betting systems.

      One glaring weakness in the Oscar’s Grind is that it doesn’t seem to account for losing three, four, or five hands in a row. Betting just one additional unit after each win could easily require the player to win six or seven hands in a row to profit a single unit. Without a doubt this is a conservative system, but it is probably going to be too conservative for small stakes players.


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