Signals: Counting in Blackjack reports How Atlantic City Became Top Gambling Destination:
Resorts International opened in Atlantic City in 1978, the first legal East Coast casino in the twentieth century. Their four- and six-deck blackjack offered a new form of surrender, dubbed by card counters as “early surrender,” since the casino allowed players to surrender half a bet even when the dealer showed an ace or 10 up, and before the dealer checked for a blackjack. This rule gave basic strategy players a small edge over the house right off the top, without any card counting whatsoever! And the advantage to card counters was even greater. From opening day, card counters had a field day at Resorts’ tables. Ironically, as word spread through the gambling community that card counters found the Resorts’ blackjack game to be the most lucrative game for players in the country, gamblers from all over the world – most of whom knew nothing about basic strategy or card counting – flocked to their tables. And, ironically, Resorts International was soon the most profitable casino in history, winning an average of $650,000 per day.
A team of professional blackjack players whose founders were from Czechoslovakia that had been playing in Las Vegas flew all of their members to Atlantic City to take advantage of this new surrender rule. This team, which later became known in the casino industry as simply the Czech Team, found the Resorts’ game to their liking and stayed for months.