MIT Blackjack Team

These techniques, while generally legal, can be powerful enough to give the player a long-term edge in the game, making them an undesirable customer for the casino and potentially leading to ejection or blacklisting if they are detected. Mike says that security usually didn't realize the number of chips that were actually there BlackJackInfo. One of the players we trained in late and was John Chang. These players are usually allowed on the casino floor, but are forbidden to go near the blackjack tables. He passed away on March 6, , from heart disease.

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Bruno Sammartino

Mike Aponte, who the Fisher character is based on, addressed this question by saying, "There are some parts in the book where I just scratch my head because obviously Ben Mezrich, the author, took artistic liberties. Martinez, [Jeff Ma] and I had a friend who was king of the Asian nightclub scene. On Chinese New Year, he invited us to a private party in Chinatown.

When we arrived, we saw they had a few blackjack tables set up. It wasn't much, but they were playing for real money.

Despite various voices on the internet coming out against the movie's mostly white, non-Asian cast some Facebook users have even called for a boycott of the film , the real MIT Blackjack Team's former members were not offended.

Mike Aponte, the basis for the Fisher character, says that they did carry most of the money on their persons when going through airport security. This is because cash was easily recognized by security through the x-ray machine. If they had a lot of chips, they stored them in carry-on bags. Mike says that security usually didn't realize the number of chips that were actually there BlackJackInfo.

Ben Mezrich's book Bringing Down the House describes much more elaborate techniques that the players used to smuggle money.

The methods include using fake umbrellas, laptop computers, plaster casts and hollow crutches. The author even quotes the book's main character, Kevin Lewis, whose real life counterpart is Jeff Ma. But Ma said that he never described such techniques to Mezrich, or knew of anyone using them. Jeff Ma said that the first time that he had heard of such cloak-and-dagger tactics was when he read Mezrich's book.

In an interview with Quint from Ain't It Cool News , Jeff Ma, the real life individual on whom the movie's main character is based, said the following, "I realized it's not really a movie about me. It's not like an autobiographical documentary about my life. It's a cool movie about stuff that we did and a lot of the stuff that we did is very on point and true in the movie, but the storyline has changed quite a bit.

I think what it does do well though is it captures the excitement of what we pulled off during our playing days. Mezrich's book has faced scrutiny. Ben Mezrich began his literary career writing techno-thriller fiction. His nonfiction bestseller Bringing Down the House: The Inside Story of Six M.

Students Who Took Vegas for Millions , on which the movie 21 is based, has faced scrutiny for its embellishment and massaging of the facts that make up the MIT Blackjack Team's true story. Mezrich attempted to defend such accusations by saying, "Every word on the page isn't supposed to be fact-checkable.

In the movie, Ben's weekends as a high roller nearly cause him to lose his two closest friends, who no longer want him to participate with them in a robotics competition.

Former MIT team leader John Chang responded to this scene in his blog by saying, "Starting from the part where Ben loses control at the Red Rock and loses K, the movie takes off on a tangent that has no resemblance to reality.

Our players were far too disciplined to even think of doing something like that. As I see it, that entire scene is a plot device to end the movie - create a conflict between Campbell and Rosa that leads up to the switcheroo finale.

In the movie, Cole Williams Laurence Fishburne is a casino security expert who investigates the team. Fishburne's character was not specifically based on any single real life individual. The 21 movie's true story reveals that the real MIT Blackjack Team was investigated by Griffin Investigations , a security agency that had been used by casinos worldwide. Andy Anderson, a tall silver-haired man who worked for Griffin, followed the team for four to five years and played a major role in exposing their strategy Breaking Vegas.

As a result, several of the MIT team members were black-booked by Griffin. Their faces landed in the Griffin Book, a dossier of photos distributed to casinos around the world Breaking Vegas. These players are usually allowed on the casino floor, but are forbidden to go near the blackjack tables.

Similarly, in Ben Mezrich's book Breaking Vegas , we find the Fisher character beaten bloody in the bathroom of a Bahamian casino. Mike Aponte, the real life Fisher, says that he was never beaten up in a casino anywhere The Boston Globe. John Chang, part of the inspiration for Kevin Spacey's character, said, "You might wonder, are the books true?

Put yourself in [book writer] Mezrich's place. He wants to sell books. If he makes up a few lurid details, well, who's going to object? So, let's beat up one of the players. In fact, let's make him swallow a chip. In the book, Micky is the one who comes up with the idea. In reality, it never happened at all. Who in their right mind would do that? John Chang says players did not party in the middle of a trip. No, at least not like we see in the movie, where characters use such vices to celebrate a big night.

John Chang, one of Micky Rosa's real life counterparts, said that, to clarify the MIT Blackjack Team's true story, the players did not "drink, visit brothels or strip clubs, or play slots in the middle of trips. Our time was too valuable, and our focus too intense to bother.

Mattie Earp Joanna Pacula Johnny Tyler Tomas Arana Frank Stillwell Pat Brady Milt Joyce Paul Ben-Victor Billy Claiborne John Corbett Wes Fuller as W. Bo Gray Forrie J. Pony Deal Peter Sherayko Texas Jack Vermillion Buck Taylor Mayor John Clum Charles Schneider Professor Gillman Gary Clarke Priest as Pedro Armendariz Jr.

Miner credit only Stephen C. High Roller Cecil Hoffman Piano Player Shane McCabe Audience Member Robert Mitchum Narrator voice Rest of cast listed alphabetically: Townsman uncredited Anthony Auriemma Miner uncredited Michelle Beauchamp Mexican Bride uncredited Frank P. The man known as Mr. Perfect passed away on Feb.

His father says steroids and pain killers also contritubed to his death. She died of a drug overdose on May 1, , at the home of Lex Luger. One of the most popular wrestlers of all-time made his WWE debut in The Junkyard Dog died on June 2, , driving back from his daughter's high school graduation.

It is believed he fell asleep at the wheel. Raymond Fernandez began his wrestling career in He passed away on March 6, , from heart disease. One of the most popular and charismatic wrestlers began his career in Eddie not only battled in the ring, but also fought with drug and alcohol addiction.

He eventually became WWE Champion in He died of acute heart failure. In , he was released from the company for receiving shipments of human growth hormone, but returned in In , Smith entered a drug rehabilitation due to his problem with painkillers. He died on May 18, , after suffering a heart attack. An autopsy revealed steroids may have played a part in his death.

Brian Adams began his wrestling career in and debuted with the WWE in as part of the tag-team Demolition. In March , Adams was arrested for purchasing steroids. He died August 13, , at the age of Authorities believe nandrolone, testosterone, and HGH played a part in his death. Chris Benoit began his wrestling career in In , Benoit missed weekend shows and a pay-per-view special for what he called a "family emergency. Benoit killed them before killing himself.

An investigation into his death found his doctor prescribed him steroids. He made his debut in with Stampede Wrestling.

Ray Traylor, a former prison guard, made his wrestling debut in He died on Sept. Scott Bigelow began his wrestling career in with the WWE. In July , Bigelow received second-degree burns on 40 percent of his body rescuing three children from a burning house.

He was found dead on Jan. Cocaine was found in his system at the time of his death.

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