It isn’t quite Wyatt Earp taking on the Cowboys in the famed 1881 gunfight at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Arizona, but 2017 March Madness has brought a version of a good old fashioned shootout among two prominent Las Vegas casino owners.
With wallets replacing guns, Golden Nugget owner Tilman Fertitta agreed to take a bet from The D’s Derek Stevens that would pay out $1 million should the University of Michigan win the NCAA title. Though the Golden Nugget could have turned down the bet, the Race & Sports Book decided to take it at the direction of Fertitta.
Stevens put $12,500 down at 80-to-1 odds from the Golden Nugget that the Wolverines would cut down the nets at the end of the NCAA Tournament. Michigan upset Louisville to reach the Sweet 16 and will now battle it out with Oregon this Thursday in hopes of making the Elite Eight.
Fertitta also has some heavy action, but his bet is on the University of North Carolina to take home the trophy. He is currently tied for second place in the Bloomberg Brackets for a Cause March Madness challenge. Should Fertitta win, the more than $380,000 jackpot goes to his charity of choice, Houston Police Foundation, to support projects of the Houston Police Department and fund special programs, officer safety, training, equipment, and new technology.
Reportedly, the biggest payout ever made for a wager at the Golden Nugget was $100,000, so this would be a massive loss. It has certainly been an active couple of weeks for Stevens, who placed $10,000 bets against the spread at South Point on all 32 games in the first round. Stevens went 11-19-2 for the round of 64.