Las Vegas Casino Hosts Clydesdale Horses as Super Bowl Bets Soar

Two huge Clydesdale horses entered a Las Vegas casino on Thursday afternoon. It seems like the start of a joke, but it’s not. The animals, slightly larger than Percherons, were used as part of a publicity stunt for a popular beer brand. The improbable event, which occurred inside South Point, proves once again that anything can happen during Super Bowl week. The grand final of American football has arrived for the first time in the world capital of the game. This Sunday, more than ever, the house will not lose in the clash between San Francisco and Kansas City. The 49ers and the Chiefs are not just competing for a championship. Records are also about to be broken in the booming sports betting industry.

Projections indicate that Super Bowl 58 will cause a betting exchange of around $23 billion. This amount is close to the budget of the federal environmental protection agency. Last year, 16 billion were at stake in Arizona, where Patrick Mahomes defeated Philadelphia (38-35) to win his second title with the Chiefs. According to the American Gaming Association, some 68 million Americans will play something on Sunday. It is 35% more compared to those who did it in the previous final.

“On the betting front we expect historic records. “The league has worked hard in recent years to establish the basic rules of sports betting and ensure that there is no illegal market,” Brendon Plack, NFL vice president of public affairs, said this week. In Nevada alone, casinos estimate they will have at least $180 million in bets on hand on finals day. It is a conservative figure. It represents the record set in 2022 in the Super Bowl between the Rams and the Bengals.

Billy Walters, a 77-year-old businessman and local legend, said Thursday that he will make a “small” bet on Kansas City. He will put between 500,000 and a million dollars out of his pocket. His faith is in Mahomes, a two-time MVP winner, to extend a supposed 36-year winning streak that was interrupted in 2017 when he went to prison for fraud.

Circa opened one of the largest areas in Las Vegas dedicated to sports betting in 2020. DAVID BECKER (Reuters)

Roger Goodell, the league commissioner, slammed his hand on the table recently to stop the furor that a Super Bowl in Las Vegas has aroused. In early February he sent a memo to the league’s 32 teams reminding them that no player in the organization can bet or share internal information. An exception is in effect this week that allows athletes to participate in casino games unless they belong to the San Francisco or Kansas teams.

The NFL quickly adapted to the new times brought about by a Supreme Court ruling in 2018. The ruling parties then declared a 1992 law that prohibited sports betting unconstitutional. The decision paved the way for legalizing an industry that remained underground and in which Americans have spent $245 billion since then. Today gambling is legal throughout the country, except in 12 States. Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont will be able to bet for the first time in 2024.

The league’s transformation can be seen on Radio Row, the NFL’s media zone. The virtual betting houses have sets there that rival in size and content with those of the large television networks. FanDuel, which became one of the NFL’s three partners for the game in 2021, offered on its set interviews with active players, including Los Angeles Rams running back Puka Nacua, who this Thursday came in second place in offensive rookie of the year voting.

“This is a great time to show our offer,” says Stephen Miraglia, spokesperson for DraftKings, another of the big companies in the industry. The company produces these days from Las Vegas 77 hours of programming aimed at the public who will gamble a few dollars on the smallest details of the game. “There is a growing demand for this type of content, which is why we produce more and more,” says Miraglia.

Casinos are handing out these days their menus of props, the propositions to take a bet. Circa expects 2,500 people on Sunday and offers various betting combinations in a 14-page catalogue. A small army of 900 employees will take bets this weekend on the most traditional options, such as the first team or player to score, the total points to be scored, which player will win the MVP… And so on down to the most improbable events. . Among these, the scoreboard is a Scorigami, an unprecedented result in the history of the NFL; for a player to complete a pass to himself or for a kicker to make a tackle. Almost 7 out of 10 bets are set on propositions of this type.

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND – JANUARY 28: Travis Kelce #87 of the Kansas City Chiefs (L) celebrates with Taylor Swift after defeating the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Championship Game at M&T Bank Stadium on January 28, 2024 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)Patrick Smith (Getty Images)

Fans will also be able to gamble a few dollars at the mercy of Taylor Swift, the huge pop star and girlfriend of Chiefs wide receiver Travis Kelce. Station casinos will give the option to bet whether Kelce will have more receptions in the final than platinum albums won by her partner (ten). Other organizations intend to take advantage of Swiftmania with more playful props: if it reaches the stadium, how many times will Swift be shown on the broadcast? What color lipstick will she wear? These types of bets, however, have not been authorized in Nevada.

“It’s surreal that this city is hosting this game,” Jay Kornegay, vice president of the Westgate casino, told the Las Vegas Sun. The manager reminded the local press that a few years ago the city could not even advertise on game broadcasts. “We were always kept away from live sports by the foundation of this city, which is sports betting,” he said. Today the city is waiting for the arrival of a professional basketball and baseball team to have representatives from all the major leagues in the United States.

Gamblers in silence

Billy Walters, a disgraced Las Vegas businessman, confessed last year in an autobiography that golfer Phil Mickelson had bet with him about $1 billion on sports competitions. The revelation forced the athlete to speak honestly about his problems with the game. Mickelson’s admission, in a social media post, is an exception for an illness that is often suffered in silence.

The boom experienced by the gaming industry has not been accompanied in the United States by an effort to combat addiction. The most important study to find out how many problem gamblers there are in Nevada was carried out more than 20 years ago. This indicates that only 6% suffered from this problem. On the ground, things are different. Gamblers Anonymous organizes more than 100 weekly meetings in Las Vegas every week where the city’s inhabitants talk about the lack of control. According to this organization, between 400 and 500 people receive help from state social programs that aim to reduce dependence on gambling. But the industry is growing like never before.

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2024-02-10 04:30:00
#house #wins #Super #Bowl #organized #Las #Vegas #Sports


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