It was just a few years ago that MGM Grand was the best casino on the Las Vegas Strip for low rollers. It offered a full pit of six-deck shoe games that stayed on all 17’s, offered surrender, resplit aces, and double down after splitting. The minimum was just $15. For $25, a player could get the double deck game that stayed on all 17’s and allowed double down after splitting.
Those days are over.
MGM Grand decided to join the ranks of casinos that spread unplayable blackjack. The casino replaced 25 shoe tables that previously paid 3-2 to a payout of 6-5 on a blackjack. This means that a player that would win $15 on a $10 bet when dealt a blackjack at a standard 3-2 table would now only win $12 at a 6-5 one. This adds 1.39% to the house edge.
During our visit on March 30, there were 18 6-5 blackjack tables open. Of those, 11 had a minimum bet of $25. The others had a $15 minimum.
MGM Grand still spreads the stand on 17 games mentioned earlier in this article. The shoe game had a $100 minimum bet, while the pitch game required at least $200 per hand.
There are three versions of video blackjack at MGM Grand. Only one – a machine known as Dealers Angel – pays 3-2 on a natural. It has a $5 minimum. The Interblock machines pay 6-5 on blackjack.
MGM Resorts Blackjack Conditions Deteriorating
MGM properties were once known as the best places to play blackjack in Las Vegas, Nevada. This title has since been lost. MGM converted all blackjack tables on the floor at Monte Carlo to 6-5 games. Mirage and Mandalay Bay both require a $25 minimum bet to get a 3-2 game. New York New York pays 6-5 at all but eight tables outside of high limits. These tables are past the craps table if entering from the Strip.
The news is not all bad at MGM properties. There are still 3-2 games at Aria, Bellagio, and Excalibur. Luxor spreads 3-2 games with a $10 minimum, only spreading 6-5 in its party pit and at $5 minimum tables.
Caesars Moving Away From 6-5 Blackjack
Caesars properties, once known for terrible blackjack, have rebounded lately. There are no 6-5 blackjack games at Bally’s or Paris. The other properties all spread 3-2 blackjack for players willing to walk past the main pits at the front of the properties.
While Caesars offers better blackjack than MGM properties nowadays, Caesars still wins the award for offering the worst blackjack game in Las Vegas. It spreads an eight-deck game that pays 6-5 on blackjack and only allows double down on 10 and 11 and not after splitting.