Mike Aponte, professionally known as MIT Mike, is a former member of the infamous MIT Blackjack Team. While he has left the group after a while, he still plays blackjack now every once in a while. And yes, you guessed it right – he’s still a professional in the field.
But why is he so popular? Is there something you need to know about him? Well, in this blog, we are going to talk about everything you must learn about Mike Aponte and his ventures.
So let’s get started with it.
|Real Name||Mike Aponte|
|Nationality||American (USA resident)|
|Profession||Professional Blackjack Player|
His Early Years
While he’s an extremely talented Blackjack player, Mike Aponte hardly played cards while he was growing up in a rather strict house. After all, he was the son of a tactical instructor in the US army. So, his childhood was much more disciplined and restricted of some sort. Also, due to the job of his father, they had to keep moving from one place to another regularly. Thus, he would hardly get the time to know his neighborhood or have any friends from there.
According to a news report, he had to attend 11 different schools during his childhood before he could graduate from Ewing High School.
During the fall season of that year, he had to move to Boston again in order to attend MIT. He studied Economics there and was a part of the football team of the school too.
However, it wasn’t until his senior year when a friend told him about Blackjack and the team in MIT who used Mathematics to win it. As per Mike, he found the whole scenario to be quite fascinating and wanted to see how things usually play out there.
In an All In magazine interview, he said that he was completely hooked to the game when he attended the meeting for the very first time. He was quite interested in how the team used card counting in their favor and won every possible game. That’s what made him feel motivated to learn the game and make history in the process.
The Blackjack Boulevard
Aponte’s very first performance as a MIT Blackjack player came into existence in 1992. And till 2000, he and his teammates garnered decent enough success while playing. According to a report, they won millions whenever they played in a reputed center of Blackjack.
He’s also said that his team practiced rigorously every day, kept an intense travel schedule, and planned all of their operations meticulously. Once he was done with his professional counting career, he went to the World Series of Blackjack and won it too.
After his bravado in the competition, he became more of a businessman, though.
With a friend of his, he has co-founded an institution that offers instructional offerings on how to win Blackjack without any rule-breaking. Apart from that, he has also coached players like Nathaniel Tilton – who wrote the book ‘The Blackjack Life.’
In 2007, Aponte became the very first Blackjack player to get a depiction on a trading card set of Topps’ Allen & Ginter. Now, he’s become a coach for Blackjack and speaks about the same in different universities, colleges, and corporations.
Some Additional Information about Mike Aponte
Honestly, we don’t really know much about the personal life of Mike Aponte. He usually does not talk too much about his background, too – as long as it doesn’t relate to his work. Some celebs do use private investigators to get information about the private life of people around them. For us, it is enough to know that Mike Aponte is married and has two kids.
A book has also been written on him and his MIT team, who took Las Vegas Blackjack down to their knees. It’s known as “Bringing Down the House,” – written by Ben Mezrich.
The narration has also inspired a movie called 21, where his ‘supposed’ character is played by Jim Sturgess, named Ben Campbell. However, it’s not related to Mike’s life.
Life After MIT
During his time on the MIT blackjack team, his singles professional career in blackjack attracted people from around the world. Out of thousands of people that got attracted by his talent in blackjack was Ben Mezrich. Ben Mezrich is the author who wrote a book based on the life of Mike.
The book ‘Bringing Down The House’ talks about a main character that travels from one casino house to another and wins all the games. And the greatest skill that helps the main character win the game is his card counting skills.
After a few years, the book was adapted for audio-visuals with a movie named 21. The film was a hit and boosted its reputation of Mike. People who were not aware of this Blackjack legend now knew about him.
After the success of the movies, the card-counting blackjack strategy that was out of fashion began to get popular among young players.
What Mike Aponte achieved in just 12 years was remarkable. The achievements can be gauzed by the fact that we are yet to see sometimes so successful at playing blackjack with just the help of a counting card strategy.
After Mike retired from the team, he still has that keen interest in the game. This is why he continued to play the game and help the younger generation to build their empire in the Blackjack game.
The Bottom Line
So, yeah, that’s all we know about the famous MIT blackjack team members, Aponte. If you are interested to know more, visit the website.
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