A WYNN-ER FROM THE PAST: Is Steve Wynn eyeballing the property that gave him his first success?
Word around town over the weekend was that the Magic Man was negotiating with MGM MIRAGE about taking back both Golden Nuggets ”” the property in downtown Las Vegas where Wynn scored his first major success as a casino operator, and its Laughlin sister property.
Although conformation of the whisper was hard to come by, one knowledgeable wag suggested that such a move might be in the works since Wynn’s Macau development is being held up because regulators are dragging their feet.
"The Nevada Gaming Control Board is really concerned that some licensees who are operating in other jurisdictions might do something to bring disrepute on Nevada gaming so they have put all license holders on notice to be careful," explained a source close to the board.
Another noted that the downtown Nugget was a property that was very close to Wynn’s mother, who passed away a few days ago.
"The downtown Golden Nugget was a lucky charm for Steve," said a source. " So I wouldn’t be surprised if, in her final days, Steve’s mother suggested that he look into picking up that old charm for luck.
"And you know that the two Golden Nuggets just don’t fit the MGM MIRAGE image so the buy might be made on the cheap," he added.
BUNNIES OFFER ULTIMATE COMP! A brothel-watcher in northern Nevada reports that the Moonlite Bunnyranch is offering the ultimate comp for service personnel: free sex!
According to our pal, the offer is good for the first 50 military personnel who show up. Anyone who doesn’t make the cut can get a 50 percent discount through July 18.
Early reports indicate that 17 servicemen and three servicewomen had accepted the offer so far.
Because of complaints from other soldiers who participated in the Iraq war, the brothel expanded their offer to all coalition forces.
MISERY LOVES COMPANY: One of our readers, Ted David, on a much smaller scale can relate to MGM Mirage taking a $5 million hit in a failed overseas Internet venture. The Chicago area businessman is angered that his offshore book was withholding his winnings.
David unfortunately is dealing with a gaming Goliath in the making. While the ease and convenience in making bets is a definite attraction, the downside is the reliability of these offshore books to pay off.
"I’m so angry at not being able to get my money, but where do you turn?" David said. Indeed, there are no answers other than hoping that first you don’t get caught. After all, offshore sports betting is illegal in the U.S. It’s Russian Roulette and gamblers like Mr. David are always at risk to find reputable books outside Nevada.
WHO’S TO LOSE WITH ADS? Whether a jockey makes the winner’s circle or not, he can add to his paycheck by wearing a little advertising on his thigh, rump or whatever.
On Saturday, some of the riders in the Belmont Stakes earned a little extra dough by wearing company logos or clothing from paid advertisers. Winner Jerry Bailey, for instance, had a large Wrangler jeans logo on his pants. And, when he and his young son Justin appeared for a postrace news conference, father and son both wore Wrangler hats.
Jose Santos, who rode the odds-on favorite Funny Cide to a third-place finish, had a more appealing logo on his pants. It was a Budweiser logo. And, Gary Stevens, who was last in the race with Scrimshaw, also sported a Wrangler logo.
All had the permission of both the owners of the horses that they rode and also of the track officials.
In the Kentucky Derby, several jockeys wore Jockeys’ Guild logo on their riding pants and were fined $500 each. Officials had not granted approval for the jockeys to wear the insignias.
CAN CLONING MAKE THE DIFFERENCE? It seemed that way last week when researchers announced they had cloned a mule, the first such event involving a member of the horse family.
But it wasn’t just any mule that they cloned, it was the racing mule Taz. Now Taz has gained a reputation by racing the speedy Black Ruby in match races in various western locales.
This year, Taz had a series of losses against Black Ruby until last week following the announcement that he had been used in the cloning event. Shortly after the announcement, Taz raced Black Ruby at the Humboldt County Fair in Winnemucca, Nev. and won.
Black Ruby’s backers where dumbfounded and promised that when the two meet again, as they will again in California along the summer fair circuit, the decision will be reversed.
They almost believe that the cloning event had nothing to do with Taz’s unexpected victory. Maybe so. Time will tell.