If you were to gather together all of the blackjack professionals that have truly had an impact on the game, few would have a more impressive background than Don Schlesinger. This member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame is still going strong promoting the game well into his 70s. From multiple counting methods to numerous books and even a professorship in mathematics, Don Schlesinger has done it all in the world of blackjack.
At the same time, Don has managed to keep his personal life separate from his blackjack career. You might find it hard to locate information about Schlesinger if you decide to look it up online. Like many blackjack pros and card counters, Don has also had to evade the eyes of casino security on occasion. Card counters like him are usually not very welcome in the live casinos.
About Don Schlesinger
Don was born in New York City and literally grew up around all kinds of gambling games. Granted, most of these were games that were operated from the street. By the time he was just a very young man, Schlesinger had been exposed to dice and cards. What seemed to stick with him was not the attraction of gambling. Don was more fascinated with the mathematics of each gambling game. He yearned to know more about how these games could be automatically favored for the house. He also wanted to know if there was a mathematical way that the games could be beaten.
A college career was a natural conclusion, and so was a major in the field of mathematics. City College of New York was the school that Don Schlesinger would choose. He quickly obtained a Bachelor’s in Mathematics, but his academic work did not stop there. Don decided that he would go on to get a Masters in French. Why he chose this new track is unclear, but it seems to have done little to stop his affection for blackjack.
By the time he got to college, Don had begun to be influenced by the work of Edward O. Thorp. Thorp’s Beat the Dealer is still considered to the be the Bible of blackjack card counting. Pretty much every top blackjack player that came from Don’s era was consumed with the mathematics proposed by Thorp, and the best of them were able to expand upon Thorp’s theories to complete their own card counting methods which refined the existing knowledge.
In Schlesinger’s case, this led to the creation of the Illustrious 18. The Illustrious 18 is a set of card counting indices that seek to combine the most powerful and effective counting strategies into a single resource.
How Don Schlesinger Expanded on Blackjack Concepts
With his development of the Illustrious 18, Don Schlesinger the blackjack expert was created. He took a different approach than some of his contemporaries. Prior to his work the tendency had been to just focus on the straight principles of card counting. Don went under the hood to look further into the mechanics of card counting systems.
As a result, Schlesinger began to produce works on a wide variety of topics. These included niche areas like back counting, camouflage, and risk analysis. The floating advantage and team play were two areas that Schlesinger began to explore. His work was able to give blackjack card counters an entirely new perspective on how counting actually works.
At the same time that he was building his career as a blackjack professional and strategist, Don was also working as the director of an investment bank. There can be little doubt that his knowledge of mathematics combined with understanding of banking and other financial concepts has been a key factor in the success of Don Schlesinger.
Don Schlesinger the Blackjack Author
For an amazing four decades, Don Schlesinger has been a fixture of the blackjack landscape. Just like many other professional players, Don eventually decided to author a book on the subject of blackjack. Blackjack Attack – Playing the Pro’s Way is considered to be one of the most extensive and sophisticated books on the game. It is not light reading by any means.
Even though Schlesinger’s book is not written with the beginning player in mind, it does have much to offer those with a limited knowledge of card counting. Don is not afraid to tackle the hard concepts of counting, but he also uses his expertise in the minor subjects like back counting and risk analysis to make things clearer to the student.
Don’s book hopes to land upon a key that will turn the blackjack player’s mind, allowing him or her to see how the concepts of card counting can be applied in a practical sense. What one must remember is that for blackjack professionals such as Don Schlesinger there is no overall reliance on theory to the exclusion of practice. The techniques that he developed were meant to be used in a live casino under fire from casino security. Try to keep that in mind as you read the blackjack books.
There will come a day when the blackjack professionals like Don Schlesinger have all but disappeared. There is quite a bit of talk today about who will fill their shoes. Many believe that this type of professional blackjack player is doomed to become a dinosaur because of the popularity of online blackjack. We still believe that playing blackjack online is an excellent way to learn the game and even win money.
You can even use some of the concepts that were pioneered by Don Schlesinger when you sign up for an account today with one of our recommended online casinos. It only takes a few moments to sign up, and you can be playing right from the comfort of your own home with a computer or tablet. Many of these casinos that we recommend will even give you a large welcome bonus when you open your account.
With a little luck you just might wind up as the next player to be inducted into the Blackjack Hall of Fame right next to Don Schlesinger.
Check out the following from Don Schlesinger: