Last time I had lots of theoretical questions. This time I have a single, completely practical one.
My understanding has long been that the only acceptable way to shuffle at a CCG tournament is the riffle shuffle. Pile shuffling doesn’t randomize the deck, so it’s useful for checking to make sure a deck has the correct number of cards but is otherwise unhelpful. Side-shuffling (a.k.a. slide-shuffling, mash-shuffling, etc.) allows sleeved cards to stick together and stay together, knifing through the unstuck cards and coming out of the process still grouped. Riffle shuffling randomizes the deck and breaks up clumps, so–so far as I knew–it was the best, and indeed only really acceptable, option.
As a result, I was surprised by this video, which I saw linked on ChannelFireball:
The video demonstrates a side-shuffling technique wherein the cards are held off to one side, so that the player shuffling cannot possibly see the cards.
I understand the value in making sure that people aren’t sneaking peeks while shuffling, but I would be much more concerned about the possibility of an insufficiently randomized deck than I would be about my opponent potentially seeing a card, even an important card. As a result, I feel like I would much rather the opponent be riffle shuffling.
Has the received wisdom on this topic changed?