Okay, to put it simply, rare.
Most players taking chances in Las Vegas would leave with less money they brought in. In some instances, even broke. But there are remarkable moments when people walk away with more money that most could probably ever earn in a lifetime.
Who are these people who have made it big in casinos? Here are three of them.
Playing roulett online? Then the more you should know this guy.
Made famous by the moniker
the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo
, Wells earned $1 million for playing roulette.
He went to Monaco-based Monte Carlo casino in July 1891 with the money he gathered from a bogus invention called the “musical jump rope.”
That time, Monte Carlo casino owner Francois Blanc wanted stories about big winnings publicized.
Wells played eleven-hour straight, ‘broke the bank’ (a term which means winning more chips than the available at the table) 12 times, and won a million francs. That isn’t all.
Wells came back to continue his winning streak. November of the same year, he went on to win another million francs in a span of three days.
Musician Fred Gilbert even wrote a popular song inspired by Well’s story.
Wells, who is also an engineer, meanwhile shared he has no secrets and that his strategy, along with luck made him win.
He came back to Monte Carlo after amassing more funds from wealthy people who invested on the fuel-saving device he invented for steam ships. He used the money entrusted to him for gambling, and later lost it all.
Wells was eventually arrested for fraud and sentenced for eight years in Old Bailey, then another for three years, and another one in France. This time, for five years.
End of the story? Wells passed away in 1922 broke.
Talk about beating the odds!
How about you hitting that one in fifty million chance of winning the million-worth jackpot? That’s the story of this 92-year old man from Las Vegas.
In 1989, Elmer Sherwin tried his luck on the Megabucks casino progressive slot game at the Mirage and won $4.6 million dollars.
Sherwin has been a fan of the Megabucks slots for years believing it pays. The law of attraction must have worked for him as one Thursday evening in 2005; the slot machine had been generous to him again.
His frequent visits to the Cannery Casino & Hotel in North Las Vegas indeed paid off. He went home with a whopping $21,147,947.
The sixteen year-gaps was worth the wait for Wells.
Sherwin set a record for Megabucks for being the first to score its jackpot prize, twice. Wells shared the prize with his family and has also made donations to the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.
Debunking the Las Vegas myth is this man named Archie Karas who hails from Greece.
From working a $60 per month job at his hometown, he went to Portland, Oregon then served as a waiter in a restaurant in Los Angeles.
The bowling alley located next to the restaurant he’s working has become his first training ground as a pool hustler.
He thought of never working again after winning $10,000. But when his winnings reached $1 million, Karas still did not quit.
Karas never feared losing money. He would bet in one dice an amount he describes as equivalent to what most gamblers could earn in their lifetime.
He continued playing high-stakes card games in Los Angeles casinos. Karas told gambling columnist Michael Konik that he had been broke for the billionth time during that period.
Still, he drove his way to Mirage Las Vegas with $50.
A fellow gambler lent him $10,000 which he used to take a shot at the Razz game.
Archie joined a series of pool matches beating and losing to world-class poker players. At times he would play with multimillionaire businessmen who do so just so they can claim they have lost to the best.
Karas said money has no value for him as he has had all the material things he could ever want. And that the things he want are what money cannot buy.
In a span of three years, Karas built a $40 million fortune from the mere $50 he had in his pocket.
The pro-gambler recently made headlines for being charged of defrauding a casino.
While things didn’t seem to have a happy ending for Karas, still, his story was one for the books, at least that of the mythical casino industry.
Nettie Gray never planned building an empire from casino winnings although fancies about it at times. She’s content having fun playing with friends and winning small from low bets.