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The Las Vegas sports book’s two week losing streak came to an end, enjoying some success with either a break even or small win Saturday and finally getting some breaks Sunday with the NFL.

However, most sports book directors got the scare of their career Saturday when jeopardy from all the top ranked college football favorites came into Oklahoma at Kansas.

It makes it much easier for bettors to do well when the teams the average bettor knows like LSU, Alabama, Boise State, Oklahoma State, Wisconsin, Clemson, Virginia Tech and Oregon all cover on a given weekend like last week.

The final game for the biggest Saturday pay-day ever was Oklahoma laying 35.

“Our entire day hinged on the Oklahoma game where we were staring at a seven-figure loss had they covered,” said MGM Resorts Vice President of race and sports Jay Rood. “Kansas saved the day for us.”

Reports from around the city were similar. Based on a sampling, it’s a fair assessment that Nevada sports books were looking at close to $5 million in losses collectively had OU scored just one more touchdown in a 47-17 win.

“We just haven’t been able to beat the top-5 teams this season,” said Rood. The bettors keep betting them no matter how high we make the line and they keep covering.”

Even though favorites were 23-26 with 17 underdogs winning outright, it was those key teams everyone knows and loves from TV that did the damage going 9-1 ATS.

“The big game that really hurt us and elevated the risk to where it got so high with Oklahoma was the Clemson game,” said Rood talking about the Tigers’ 56-45 comeback win. “They were losing outright late in the game to Maryland, but still managed to cover the spread (-7½).”

After having such a scare Saturday and being beat up so bad recently by the public in the NFL, the sports books were hoping for a few games to break their way Sunday and they got it.

“It was a nice Sunday for us compared to the last two weeks, said Rood. “The Bengals covering was our best game of the morning. We got a lot of large money on the Colts Saturday night and Sunday morning before kickoff.”

The public was split on parlays with the Bengals. Many found reason to believe in the Colts. But the Sharps were all over the Colts as they pushed the game from Bengals -7 to 4½. It took a late fumble return by the Bengals to make them a loser.

“The day ultimately came down to the big parlay teams not getting there collectively this week,” said Rood. “Only the Packers got there early while the Patriots, Lions, Steelers and Saints didn’t cover.”

The game of the day was arguably a tie with the 49ers (+5) showing some strength on each side of the line as they simply out-powered the Lions, 25-19, in handing Detroit its first loss of the season.

The other game saw the Patriots (-6½) come from behind to beat Dallas 20-16. The Cowboys have now played in 11 straight games where the margin of victory has been 4 or less.
“Our best decision of the day was Tampa Bay winning outright (26-20). We had a run of Saints money pushing the game up from 4 to 6½ by kickoff, but it wasn’t just that (the sharp plays), it was the final game of the afternoon with all kinds of parlay liability on it.”

Favorites ended up going 7-5 ATS for the day. When it’s those five high profile teams that don’t cover, it’s almost always a good day for the house. The only two outright winners, San Francisco (+200) and Tampa Bay (+250) paid out well for those who had the foresight to take them on the money-line.

PT’s Sports Books

Most everyone’s favorite local sports pub in Las Vegas just gave more reasons to solidify its status. They now have sports betting kiosks in all their bars. For the last four weeks PT’s has been slowly putting in the kiosks at all 37 of locations in town.

We’ve seen kiosks at a few places in town like Buffalo Wild Wings, but the major difference with PT’s is that you can actually wager with cash on the spot and don’t have to set up an account at Leroy’s like the kiosks at BWW require.

The convenience of sports betting just got easier than ever. There’s a PT’s close to where ever you may live across the valley. The best part about it all is the PT’s staff has completely bought into it.

It’s not an uncommon thing to see employees get angry with change or having new additional duties added to their daily work routine, but not the PT’s people. They’ve welcomed it with open arms, likely because they know their involvement in it could give them more monetary gain through gratuities.

I checked out two PT’s locations and played it off like I didn’t know what I was doing and needed help. Each one of them walked me through the entire process in almost the same routine showing me that the executives at PT’s made it objective number one to get the staff thoroughly trained and ready for sports bettors.

Some of local sports books probably aren’t going to be too happy with the new competition, but the reality is that those who want a sports book environment with every game on TV and big crowds to accentuate moments of games will always go to the big books.

It’s not always about convenience. For most people that frequent sports books, it’s about the vibe of the book that is attractive, something that can never be recreated in a bar.

Wildfire Sports Book

Since my girlfriend is in the Great Giveaway and the contest is now available through Station Casino’s smaller properties, I now find myself being dragged with her to the Wildfire on Sunset every Saturday night.

Turning in her selections, a rather simple process, actually turns into two or three hour session as I eventually get captivated watching games at the bar.

What turned out to be a reluctant 5 minute drive from my house has now become something I look forward to because the sports book and bar is very clean. All the games are on and I never have to ask for a game because it’s already up.

The staff is super friendly and, if that wasn’t good enough, I also get the same deal with $1 Buds and hot dogs that all the Station properties have. It’s one of the best kept secrets in town and worth a visit for a sports fan who is looking for a night out on the cheap where the environment isn’t.


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