Hope for a Supreme ruling

Nov 7, 2017 3:11 AM

It is just four weeks away now – Monday, Dec. 4 – the day the U. S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Christie v. National Collegiate Athletic Association. The Court’s ruling, which is expected in early 2018, could negate the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 and open the doors to legalized sports betting across the country.

Of course, the Court could also support PASPA, upholding lower court decisions against New Jersey. Lawyers near and far have been positing various possible rulings since the Court announced it would hear the case back in June.

As the hearing date gets closer the number of those lining up in favor of allowing sports betting to become legal is increasing. At last count 20 states have joined an amicus brief filed originally by West Virginia and the American Gaming Association has filed its own separate amicus brief.

Many have spoken in support of sports betting, including NBA Commissioner Adam Silver who has said times have changed and sports betting needs to be brought into the open where it can be properly monitored and regulated.

The most recent support came late last month from the Fraternal Order of Police, the world’s largest organization of sworn law enforcement officers (330,000 members). Chuck Canterbury, national president of the FOP, said in a statement that his organization “would join the advisory council of the American Sports Betting Coalition (ASBC) to show our support for ending the 25-year-old ban on sports wagering in the United States.”

Canterbury also said PASPA has “failed to stem the tide of sports betting, and has instead encouraged an explosion in illegal, unregulated wagering.”

The massive amount of illegal wagering on U.S. sports is estimated to be $150 billion, according to the AGA’s website. That’s a lot of money not being accounted for.

GOOD TIMES: The recently released gaming win revenue figures for the month of September show an overall statewide increase of 3.25% to almost $980 million compared to about $949 million in September 2016. But the number we focused on was the sports betting win – $44.4 million, up 8.37% over Sept. 2016. That win came from a record handle of $558.2 million.

“People love to bet sports,” Vinny Magliulo, VP of corporate relations for Las Vegas Dissemination Company, told us. “They are more informed than ever and are participating in all the options offered by the sportsbooks here in Nevada.”

Vinny, who has nearly 40 years of experience in the casino industry including directing both Caesars Palace and Wynn Las Vegas sportsbooks, also has a second job. He is the VP of strategic partnerships and marketing for VSiN, the sports gambling news network that calls South Point Casino home.

“VSiN is doing great,” Vinny said. “And Brent Musburger is having a lot of fun. He says retirement is great.”

As you may recall, Musburger, one of the best known play-by-play sportscasters ever, retired in January after nearly 50 years in the business. Now he hosts “My Guys in the Desert” weekdays on VSiN, 3-5 p.m. You can listen to the show on their website (vsin.com) or on SiriusXM channel 204. Better yet, if you’re in town, head to the South Point and catch the show live. The broadcast booth is right next to the sportsbook.

IN SEASON: It’s Florida stone crab season and one of the best places to get this delicacy is Katherine’s at the CasaBlanca Resort in Mesquite, just a little over an hour north on Interstate 15. This week (Nov. 7-9) you can take in the Nevada Open Golf Championship, played on some of the most beautiful courses you’ve ever seen, and then head to Katherine’s for dinner – fresh stone crab, flown in directly from the Florida Keys, and a melt-in-your-mouth USDA dry aged steak from Stockyards in Chicago. Mmmmm… it sure sounds good to us.

See you around town.