Years ago, while visiting New York, I went on a date with a bestselling author who was um, connected. He took me to Da Silvano’s for lunch, and the the next night to a local Italian place where where the waiters called him Mr. Nick and there was no check at the end of the meal. During dessert, a young guy came up to him very worriedly and began discussing
That thing I learned was the young guy’s football bookie bets–he owed a lot of money and wanted my date to help get some of the heat off him. Later I wanted to know how the bets were made, the technical stuff (the money is left in certain washing machines at certain laundromats), and how point spreads worked. Mr. Nick filled me in.
Last night’s Lingerie-League-rejects refereed game between the winning Seattle Sea Hawks and the favored Green Bay Packers threw the legal betting industry into a tizzy, as well as fans: President Obama tweeted
NFL fans on both sides of the aisle hope the refs’ lockout is settled soon.
Las Vegas bookmakers claim the scab ref’s winning call on the disputed touchdown
may have swung $150 million in bets worldwide.
Jeff Sherman, assistant manager at the Las Vegas Hotel’s Super Book, estimated that about $15 million was wagered in Nevada on the National Football League’s nationally televised Monday night game and the total worldwide handle — including offshore sportsbooks, those in Europe and illegal betting — was about $150 million.
KFI640-AM newsradio said it was close to
in bets that changed hands.
“There was more Packer money than Seattle money,” Johnny Avello, director of race and sports operations at the Wynn Las Vegas, said in a telephone interview. “The $150 million is probably a right number taking everything into consideration. Whatever money it was, 100 percent of it shifted.”
Avello further told Business Week:
If you throw these guys [replacement officials] in there again next week, and we’ll see if people decide to take a break. I would like to see the regular refs come back. I think it would instill more confidence in the bettors.
The NFL referees, all 121 of them, who earn $149,000 a year each (compare that to salaries of players!), just want their guaranteed pensions, rather than to have their retirement funds converted into 401Ks which are vulnerable to the stock market. The NFL owners would also like to be able to remove poorly-performing refs and replace them. But given the bumbling calls the current pool of replacement refs are making, that idea seems really bad.
If these idiotic calls and major betting losses continue, the Puppy Bowl may make the prime time.