Try New Year’s
with ‘The Hulk’

Jan 2, 2007 6:29 AM

I’m reminded of a night in Laughlin during this same time of year in the late 1980s, when my best friend Michael Graninger and I decided to celebrate New Year’s Eve a few days early.

Mike at that time was the casino manager at the Edgewater Hotel, and he understood that I couldn’t go out on New Year’s Eve because the next day’s games started very early in the morning and I needed a clear head because it figured to be our biggest day of the year.

With that being said, we started our jaunt on one end of the casino Strip about 6 p.m., having a few cocktails along the way. I liked going out with Mike because his nickname was "The Hulk" and he looked every bit as huge as Lou Ferregno did, so who was going to mess with us?

As we finally drifted down the Strip we were feeling no pain. We came upon a small casino called the Nevada Club (now it’s the Golden Nugget I think). We decided to shoot some craps, as we had some prior luck in this store.

When Mike’s turn came to throw the dice we were playing nickel chips, and covering all of the numbers. The waitress kept bringing our booze as fast as she could, because her tokes began getting bigger and bigger the longer Mike shot.

He kept hitting numbers and avoided the dreaded 7 for almost an hour. Everybody in the joint surrounded the table, as we were quite vocal by now. We kept stepping up, and we were well beyond green chips ($25) as the roll continued.

Now Mike threw the dice high in the air, and most of the time they hit the opposite side, but occasionally, they wouldn’t reach it. Each time he was reminded by the boxman to throw the dice harder so as to hit the far wall of the table.

The house was getting very nervous at this point and the casino manager really barked at Mike to throw the dice harder or he’ll stop the game.

The manager’s tone and voice and his vocabulary took a real turn for the worse as he ordered a black chip fill at the table. Naturally everybody at the table was having a great time, especially Mike and myself.

The manager at this point stopped the game again and scolded Mike with a flurry of words that GamingToday wouldn’t print under any circumstances.

Finally he gave the dice back to Mike, and with a Hulkish throw Mike sent the dice almost across the room. One of them flew into an air conditioning vent duct, as the Nevada Club had very low ceilings.

Instantaneously, Mike yelled out at the top of his lungs "SAME DICE!"

With that they took all of our chips off of the table, and four security guards ushered us out the front door. It turned out to be our biggest score, but I’ll always wonder if that lucky cube is still in that air duct.

Surprisingly, I’ve still got some chips left so I might make the BCS championship game yet.

DATE UNDERDOG FAVORITE CURRENT LINE OPENING LINE SID’S LINE

Jan. 2 Wake Forest Louisville -10 and 52 -9½ and 51½ -8 and 52

I can’t lay 10 in this spot, although I think the favorite will win this game. Beware of weather here, and if the weather is bad go under, especially if it’s windy.

DATE UNDERDOG FAVORITE CURRENT LINE OPENING LINE SID’S LINE

Jan. 3 Notre Dame LSU -9 and 55½ -9 and 54 -8 and 44

I’ve already gone under 54, so how smart am I? DEFENSE DEFENSE.

DATE UNDERDOG FAVORITE CURRENT LINE OPENING LINE SID’S LINE

Jan. 6 W. Michigan Cincinnati -8 and 41½ -8½ and 41½ ? and 32

It used to be an honor to play a bowl game after the 1st of the year, but surely that’s not the case any more. Why the hell are these guys playing on this day and in Canada to boot? I went under and hope this game is outside.

DATE UNDERDOG FAVORITE CURRENT LINE OPENING LINE SID’S LINE

Jan. 7 Ohio So. Miss -6½ and 42 -7 and 42 -5 and 32

This looks like a good dog and under parlay to me.

DATE UNDERDOG FAVORITE CURRENT LINE OPENING LINE SID’S LINE

Jan. 8 Florida Ohio State -7½ and 47 -8 and 48½ -12½ and 44

Here’s another chance to get my watch, as I think the Buckeyes will demolish this team. They may have to bring Janet Jackson back at half time to hold your interest in this blowout. "I’m all in."