Contests past

Aug 24, 2010 7:05 AM

According to Webster (not Marvin, but Merriam), the word "contest" means a struggle for superiority or victory without direct contact with or interference from competitors.

So it is late August and everyone knows where I am going with this story. Jay at the Hilton will continue the tradition of one of Las Vegas’ most well-known and respected contests. Archie will give away a few houses and maybe a few Camaros for the driveway.

Johnny over at the Wynn has a little tweak in a last man standing contest with a big time prize. Scucci, Salerno and Osborne will all have worthwhile editions for the upcoming season.

The "M" is stepping up to the plate, also. Lucky’S will offer a progressive card and personally I hope it works as I see a big future in any progressive payout that anybody attempts.

Everybody always takes credit for being first although there are no archives to actually pin it down. But I cannot remember anyone before Michael Gaughan starting a contest that was and still is the staple of what we had, or what we did, or where we are going with them.

I should remember as I was there at the Royal Inn with the first Pick the Pros contest. Just a side note: my hair was a lot darker and I was probably 34 years younger.

The real idea was to attract mainstream people who were attached to football but did not necessarily come out to participate at the casinos. His message was clear and simple: make it easy and self explanatory and curve it toward supposedly the "weaker sex."

The men are coming out, but now the wives and girlfriends are tagging along to be a part of this new called excitement.

It was his idea for no point spreads which proved to be the right move. Our first year, I believe we had 1,200 entries but by year 4 we were topping 25,000 and growing.

The inside competition started, and from that point in the early 80s to the mid 80s everyone is now in the contest business.

So the contests have been around for a long time and have a place and provide people interest for a relatively low entry, sans a few high end deals.

If you have played before, chances are you will play again. If you haven’t you might want to think about it.

Separate note: you saw a monster point spread move on the Giants-Steelers game on Saturday. We all know the reason of the swing but I can tell you that these crazy swings usually get the cash in preseason.

Just saw the ending of the 49’s-Vikings game and naturally Al went crazy as the safety came into play for the point spread winner.

You went from at least getting your cheese back if you had the Vikings to stuffing it in your ear.

We have now officially started the football season.

Take care, Jimmy V.