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The most wonderful thing about the casino is that it inspires something- you’ll hear no end of tales about impressive wins, catastrophic losses and plenty of folks just waiting for an audience so they can tell you what the best online casino is after an amazing run of luck they had. But then there are a few stories that are just plain crazy!
Akio Kashiwagi’s mysterious death
The whale to end all whales- Akio Kashiwagi was a wealthy Tokyo-based gambler who was famous for both being extremely interested in gambling and having some awful luck at it. He was immensely secretive (to the point where a credit review from casino officials declared his profession as ‘business’) but also claimed he made $100 million dollars a year. If so, you’d expect he’d have no problem paying off debts but in 1990 he lost $10 million while gambling in the Trump Taj Mahal casino (yes, the same Trump who’s now the President) and stormed out. Apparently, Kashiwagi and the management had made a deal that he would bet $12 million and he felt they weren’t upholding their end? They didn’t have long to fight over it as Kashiwagi was murdered two years later, stabbed ‘up to 150 times’ with a samurai sword. His high roller lifestyle and bizarre death have turned him into something of a legend and inspired a few fictional interpretations of the man himself.
Sean Connery’s Roulette Win
While he may not be everyone’s favourite Bond, Sean Connery certainly liked to gamble like him. Way back in 1963, he visited the Casino de la Vallee in Italy he sat down at a roulette table and bet on the number 17. The ball didn’t land on 17, but he tried again- still, no 17. He bet on it again for a third time and, happily, the ball landed square into the 17 slot. Now, this is where most people would accept they lucked out and leave. But Sean Connery decided that he would let the entire bet. On 17 again. Incredible, the ball feel right into the 17 spot again. But with a wild disregard for the laws of probability, he let it ride, all on seventeen again. And won. Even Sean Connery wasn’t willing to roll that for a fourth time so he left with winnings to the tune of seventeen million Lire (or £160,000 in modern money). Incidentally, the odds of the ball landing in the same pocket three times in a row is 1:50653.
Fred Smith Saves FedEx
In 1973, FedEx was on the brink of extinction. The company was hit by the rising fuel prices and was on the verge of needing to liquidate, pay employees and call it a day. They needed $24,000 to pay the fuel costs for their deliveries and had just $5,000 in the bank. With no one willing to loan them the money, their CEO decided instead to take the whole 5 grand and take it to Vegas. When his fellow managers came in on Monday, he’d turned the 5,000 in 27,000 and enough for them to pay for the fuel. When asked how he could do something so… well, insanely reckless, Fred just pointed out they wouldn’t have been able to pay for the fuel 5k anyway so he may as well chance. That gamble has now formed a company with $32 billion in market capital so potentially the most important few hands of Blackjack ever?