Sports Notes - 10-28-2008

Oct 28, 2008 4:01 PM

TAMPA BAY’S DAMAGE TO VEGAS ALREADY DONE

When you think of baseball futures bets, the first thought is World Series. And rightly so. But it’s the select few who wisely bet on Tampa Bay at 75-1 to win the AL pennant that have Las Vegas books like MGM MIRAGE over a barrel.

"It all comes down to the size of the pool," said Jay Rood, director of race and sports for MGM MIRAGE properties. "We could absorb Tampa Bay winning the World Series because the futures pot is larger. Not so with winning the pennant. There we took our lumps."

There is one ‘ray’ of sunshine with Tampa Bay. MGM stands to make a small profit. Seems there were a lot of Red Sox wagers that lost. As for the Series, MGM has a prop on whether the final score of each game is odd or even. – MARK MAYER

AND NOW FOR THE NBA DIVISION RACES...

The NBA returns for business Tuesday night (did it ever leave?). Here are the lines c/o the Las Vegas Hilton:

Cleveland +6½ at Boston, Milwaukee +6 at Chicago and Portland +7½ at Los Angeles. TNT will air both the Celts and LA. Here is the Hilton’s odds breakdown for winning each division.

Atlantic: Celts 1-3, 76ers 7-2, Raptors 11-2, Knicks 40-1, Nets 50-1.

Central: Pistons 5-8, Cavaliers 9-4, Bulls 9-2, Pacers 20-1, Bucks 75-1.

Southeast: Magic 2-5, Heat 4-1, Wizards 10-1, Bobcats 10-1, Hawks 12-1.

Southwest: Hornets 9-5, Rockets 9-5, Spurs 2-1, Mavs 8-1, Grizzlies 200-1.

Northwest: Jazz 1-3, Blazers 3-1, Nuggets 6-1, Wolves 40-1, Thunder 150-1.

Pacific: Lakers 1-7, Suns 4-1, Warriors 22-1, Clippers 22-1, Kings 200-1.