February 16, 2017

*** This hand was suggested by Inushtuk
44*-35  ?
Total votes: 223

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864 votes

Joined: March 2016

Thursday 3:25 AM
Not a lot of help with this cut . Preferred 7-8 to crib rather than a pair.
Hand and crib combined value is slightly more than for toss J-J or 2-4.
4086 votes

Joined: April 2008

Thursday 4:02 AM
A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 for examples. Somethin gotta hit. dec
376 votes

Joined: January 2017

Thursday 4:10 AM
The Jacks I've thrown will of course go nicely with the Q-K my opponent will stick in!
1803 votes

Joined: June 2013

Thursday 4:26 AM
More likely to receive a 6 or 9 from Pone, than I am a 5.
Only the red tens, queens and kings (6/46 = 13%) are unhelpful.
3036 votes

Joined: November 2008

Thursday 4:41 AM
Fine [puzzle as it contains several elements which say to retain the cards with pegging value. This hand includes a 2-card "11 from heaven" which works to the dealer advantage. The 2-4 have high pegging value and the 7-8 has moderate pegging value. This retention does better in any pegging strategy (defense offense, or optimal). RAS chooses an optimal pegging strategy in this position, and the 2-4-7-8 performs best with that choice. In addition this hand improves with the cut of A, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9. If a X-point card turns on the deck, that is likely to benefit the J-J discard. Now it does not work this way if the small cards were A-2 or A-3. If that was the case, the 7-8 ought to be in the crib and combined values would favor that discard choice. DoctorWitty has touched on a factor that is difficult for folks to visualize in the heat of play. A stand-alone pair (one without a touching card or a 15-2) often works well in own crib as the cards that fit either side of the pair are likely to be of little or no value in opponent hand. For example, 10-Q and Q-K are very common discard choices for non-dealer. Having two jacks increases the likelihood of those being discarded and quickly. RAS often talks about the differences between mathematical probabilities and frequency rates. That's the case here and with other stand-alone pairs as well. If holding 3-3 without a touching card or 15-2, opponent will toss A-2, 2,4 at a far greater frequency than the mathematical probabilities suggest, though likely to find a way to retain the 4-5 combination. If holding a stand alone 7-7, opponent s likely to have little use for 2-6, 6-8 or 8-9 though will probably find a way to retain the 5-6. You can follow that through with other choices as well. With a 9-point lead and a known nine points (six in hand, dealer guaranteed peg, and two in the crib) will play off the lead. Did you remember the discarded Jacks were black? Will take my chances on pegs later in the pegging play.
2681 votes

Joined: April 2011

Thursday 5:19 AM
What RAS said.
3546 votes

Joined: March 2008

Thursday 5:41 AM
I've been tossing myself middle cards for years now. It will be interesting to see if I've been doing it all wrong.

I'll bet the opponent tosses me a middle card.
237 votes

Joined: February 2009

Thursday 7:43 AM
Decided to toss the 7-8. It seems majority of the time when I toss J-J to my crib, I end up with a feeble 2 or 3 point crib (with the right jack which we missed out on this time). I enjoyed reading Ras's analyses above and do not disagree, especially with the superior pegging potential of the 2-4-7-8. Never too old to learn new things. Off to California to visit family and check out the Bruins/Sharks hockey game at the "Shark Tank" on Sunday.
2307 votes

Joined: October 2008

Thursday 8:37 AM
It's nice to have a PAIR in our Crib, UNLESS we can find almost ANYTHING ELSE as a substitute!

And here is as good as any example of how Dealer Crib Charts will often INFLATE the value of a Jack, or especially of TWO Jacks, when thrown into our Crib.

Of course we'll get to 'cash in' on that 50% 'shot' for Nobs whether the Jack(s) reside in our Hand OR in our Crib. So I'll side with the 50%-plus Crowd and Toss (7 8) here, and my second choice here today in fact I believe would actually be Toss (2 4) with the under 10% crowd!

Terrible Two Card Cut: Wrong Rank, Wrong Color (Suit), Just Plain WRONG!
472 votes

Joined: June 2016

Thursday 1:24 PM
This is a great puzzle. There are two trains of thought between the bloggers. What would they all discard if they were the pone? How would they play the hand if they were at 100-95? Take some time to ponder the possibilities.

Happy Pegging
579 votes

Joined: July 2016

Thursday 2:36 PM
This same puzzle was submitted by acis1 last May 9. The only difference was we were Pone. See Ras's post for May 9, 2016, and my question to him as to what he would do if we were dealing with this hand. It's very similar to what he said today. And he asked, "Why don't you submit this puzzle." So I did. Then I wrote back; trying to be funny, "So let it be written, etc ". I later noticed that he had submitted the same puzzle as me. I tried to get the webmaster to substitute one of these puzzles, but to no avail. I thought at the time that he must have misunderstood what I was saying, and thought that I wanted *him* to submit it. I see now however that he did have the wherewithal to change the score; and I think that will change things tomorrow.

After reading Ras's discussion about how he would handle this hand if he was Dealer, I made a query, and discovered that the CP does not agree with the master Ras at this particular score. The prof gives the 7-8 a higher crib average than does Ras. But even using Ras's crib averages, and the prof's offensive pegging averages, you will see that the 7-8 comes out best by a mere 0.07 points. So I'm foregoing the Magic Eleven, but still have the "high pegging value" of the 2-4 to work with. Half of the small card leads are covered. If Pone leads a 5 or a J, my J response is fairly safe. Taking every point I can get as my goal is 59 after this hand, and it's not looking too good right now.
3493 votes

Joined: October 2007

Friday 2:26 AM
Its going to be between 2+2pt and 4+0pts so its 2-4-J-J (7-8), 2-4-7-8 (J-J) or 7-8-J-J (2-4). Normally a fifteen in the box is going to be better than a pair and as its the touching 7-8 I think this will be even more so:

2-4-J-J: 2pts + 6½pts (Schell: 6.53) = 8½pts

2-4-7-8: 2pts + 5¼pts (Schell: 5.33) = 7¼pts

7-8-J-J: 4pts + 4½pts (Schell: 4.52) = 8½pts


2-4-J-J: Improves with AAAA, 222, 3333, 444, 5555, 9999, JJ = 24 cuts = 24/46 = 52.2% up to 6/9pts with AAAA, 3333, 5555, JJ = 14 cuts. Plus 11 spades and 12 clubs for 1pt extra for his nob = 23/46 = 0.50pt.

2-4-7-8: Improves with AAAA, 222, 3333, 444, 5555, 6666, 777, 888, 9999 = 32 cuts = 32/46 = 69.6% up to 6/7/9pts with 222, 3333, 444, 6666, 777, 888, 9999 = 24 cuts.

7-8-J-J: Improves with 5555, 6666, 777, 888, 9999, JJ = 20 cuts = 20/46 = 43.5% up to 7/8pts with all cuts. Plus 11 spades and 12 clubs for 1pt extra for his nob = 23/46 = 0.50pt.


2-4-7-8 should peg the best with 2-4-J-J next., I think.


We're in position and ahead so we could play Defense or take advantage of our lead and play for a skunk.


Both 2-4-J-J and 7-8-J-J start with 1¼pts more than 2-4-7-8 and also have the benefit of ½pt extra for his nob. So evven though 2-4-7-8 will peg better I don't think it will make this up. 2-4-J-J has more cuts for improvement and 14 cuts for 6-9pts while 7-8-J-J has 20 cuts for improvement all of which will score 7/8pts. Also I think 2-4-J-J will peg slightly better. So on balance I feel that the 7-8 discard will have the edge. So its 7-8 for me.
3261 votes

Joined: February 2008

Friday 2:47 AM
At 44*-35 playing an Offense strategy for the pegging the dynamic expected averages and Win/Loss %s are:

Offense___Hand_Pegs_Crib_Total___W6 %___W7 %

Offense_______L6 %____L7 %

Calculations for hand expected averages have been replaced with C. Liam Brown's due to a flaw in my program when calculating with more than one J.

2-4-J-J is 0.28pts better than 7-8-J-J and is also best for Win %s and Loss %s which take account of the board position. So I'll select 7-8 to discard.

After the 2 cut I'll play Offense to the lead.