Be careful of bad advice

Apr 3, 2019 3:00 AM

Before getting into this week’s article, I’d be remiss if I didn’t first thank the many Gaming Today readers who reached out following last week’s submission and its theme of the importance of family. 

The sports gambling industry doesn’t exactly lend itself to exposing one’s “softer side” and doing so publicly comes with risk.  

As it turns out, the reward has far exceeded that risk and the outlet GT has provided has been like therapy for me ... only cheaper.

If you’ve caught the new Showtime docuseries, “Action,” opening up my life to the public seems to be happening more and more. When the opportunity was first pitched to me, I definitely gave it a lot of thought before giving the producers the green light. Ultimately, I decided that I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to allow viewers a peek into what it takes to do what I do. 

The general public perceives the life of a gambler is easy; that we sit around, drinking Mai Tais, making bets, and cashing tickets. The reality is that it’s a battle, it’s a grind, and its hard work. 

The show paints a picture of the highs, and, more importantly, the lows of gambling and I hope that people see me for what I am — a real professional who makes his living simply by making smart bets every day and not by pretending I’m smarter than everyone or promising a pot of gold.

First of all, let’s make a few distinctions. To me, there are three types of people bettors: One, those who do it for fun — play an office pool or bet their buddy 20 bucks when their favorite teams meet; Two, those who do it more frequently, in an effort to supplement their regular income.  It may be “fun” when they win, but that’s not the purpose; and three, those that do it for a living. That’s the 1 percent, the grinders, the professionals. That’s me.

That said, the Supreme Court ruling last spring that changed the industry forever also impacted the way I see my value to that industry.

The legalization of sports gambling combined with the social media age has led to a feeding frenzy of people trying to cash in on all the new customers.  If you have a twitter account, you have a voice. And more often than not, this voice is providing the public with bad information.  Just like you wouldn’t look to the Kardashians for political advice, you shouldn’t get your gambling advice from people who don’t do it for a living.

Sports gambling may be the only industry in the world where people call themselves “professionals” that simply are not.  If someone says they are a “professional” basketball player, but actually plays in the church league, what would you say? If someone said they were a “professional” pilot but never went to flight school, would you get on their plane?

Of course not. And you shouldn’t take advice from someone who doesn’t bet for a living.

I’ve seen the bottom of the barrel in the industry and friends and family have lost their livelihood based on poor information.  With the new laws, there are more fakes and fugazzis popping up every day that are actually hurting people, while at the same time giving my profession a bad name and a black eye. The difference is that in the past, these folks surfed on an undercurrent, out of the sight of non-hard core gamblers. Now, everyone is in plain sight, preying on all the new meat that’s looking to start betting sports.

I will admit, I have always been leery of “touts” and those who provide betting advice to others. My issue was a simple one: how can you advise someone to make a bet when you yourself don’t have as much as a grocery dollar on the same game?  If you are confident enough to ask someone to pay you for the information, shouldn’t you be confident enough to bet it yourself? 

Now I know some touts will claim they do, and in truth, they might make a $100 play here and there. But they aren’t winning bettors long term who have made their living, a great living in fact, betting.

So, I had a choice. I could complain about these charlatans nonstop on Twitter and warn people about getting bad information, or I could do something on my own to provide an alternative.  

And after turning down offers for a decade, I finally found the right fit and am excited to announce that I just launched my own one-of-a-kind service,, a mobile app aptly named, drumroll please, Krackwins.

My goal with the Krackwins app is to be the go-to alternative to these snake oil salesmen making empty promises by providing valuable information that can actually sharpen bettors and teach them what I’ve learned making my living over the past 25 years.  

I expect to hear criticism from my colleagues in the industry who think that “tout” is a four-letter word. The thing is, in a sense, I get  where they’re coming from. 

Webster’s dictionary defines “tout” as “An attempt to sell something, typically by pestering people in an aggressive or bold manner.” That’s not what I have ever been about, and in turn, it’s not what Krackwins will be about. 

First and foremost, with the Krackwins app, users get the plays that I am placing myself at the time I make them and before the line moves the other way.

Second, my service will offer a variety of different tiers to choose from. Instead of preying on those new to the scene, Krackwins slowly introduces users by offering a free download of the app and a free introductory package that provides a play a week.

If and when users get more comfortable with the app as well as the market, they can upgrade to one of the multiple intermediary packages offering an increase in plays.

Krackwins also offers a premium package, custom made for the regular bettor who wants to grind it  right along with me every day.

All that said, the Krackwins app is more than just plays. It’s a multimedia platform that includes original content, videos, life stories and tales of Las Vegas, like the ones you read in GT.  It also has “Betting Tips 101” and advice on money management, a key component to being successful in the sports betting world.

My vision is for it to become a community of folks who embody the good side of the industry, folks who want to lift other people up and not tear other people down. 

And, most importantly, folks who want to take down the books, one bet at a time.

The bottom line, if you haven’t figured it out by now, is that despite living in the morality car wash that is Las Vegas, I live in reality. And it’s in the city that is literally the furthest from reality where I do my job.

I hope through my Gaming Today articles, or by watching Action, you have seen that everything about me is real. From the way I dress, to the bets I make, to the way I love my family and friends.

The reality is that the sports gambling world is changing at warp speed. And with any seismic change, there are going to be major casualties. You either learn to adapt with that change — or you die.

I’m here. I’m not going anywhere. And I am ready for this new age, whatever it may bring. And I am happy to provide as much shelter from the storm that I can.

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