This Week In Sports Betting

An analysis of the Silver State’s gaming revenue numbers show that sports betting is on track to become a $5 billion business in the state of Nevada this year for the first time ever. 

Pretty cool. 

It’s a clear sign that sports betting is more popular than ever and we can reasonably infer the numbers in Nevada are a reflection of what’s happening to sports betting everywhere. 

That’s a good thing because 1. Sports betting is f*#&king awesome and 2. Sports betting is a much more responsible way to spend your gambling entertainment dollars than just about anything in Gamblor’s universe (Gamblor being the supreme god of all things wagering, of course). 

As I often talk about, the hold (the sports book’s winning percentage) is usually in the five percent range which is much lower than any other game in the casino. 

Sports betting earned a hold of 5.38 percent in 2015 in Nevada. Other than bingo – and who the hell goes to Las Vegas to play bingo? – the worst hold percentage for any game other than sports betting was blackjack at 12.4 percent. 

In other words, the second worst game for the House is still about three times better than sports betting. 

Bettors are realizing this. They risked $9.01 billion on blackjack in 2014 - the second most popular table game in the casino behind baccarat in terms of money wagered – and they only risked $8.8 billion in 2015. Sports betting, meanwhile, is exploding in record numbers.   

It’s a matter of investment as much as entertainment and the fact is that you can risk less over a longer period of time with better odds for the gambler at the sports book. 

So give yourself a little pat on the back the next time you opt to take the points instead of busting on blackjack and know you are part of a growing trend. 

FSTA says fantasy sports isn’t gambling

Want to hear something funny? The FSTA put out a release this week declaring that betting on fantasy sports isn't gambling. 

OK then. It’s all in an effort to bullshit Congress with a straight face this week during hearings to the Energy and Commerce Committee. 

If you want to read more on it, there was a good piece in the New York Daily News this week. It talked about how all the major pro sports leagues and the major daily fantasy companies opted not to attend the hearings despite being invited.

Steph Curry named MVP. Duh. 

Stephen Curry was named the MVP of the NBA this week and goes down in history along with Tom Brady (2010) and Wayne Gretzky (1982) as the only players to be unanimously named as the MVPs of their leagues. 

Curry opened the season at +700 to be MVP this year and shame on those of us who didn’t take him. What were we thinking? 

EPL Relegation odds 

If you follow me on Twitter (@jonnyoddsshark), you know I have retired from betting soccer because it’s so bloody fixed. Which is why I call it fixed-ball. 

At any rate, here are the odds as of Monday (courtesy Sports Insights) on which teams will be relegated this season in the English Premier League. Sunderland won Wednesday so they are looking just fine.  

Odds on who will make the playoffs in the NFL this season

CT Technologies in Nevada released “Yes/No” odds for every team in the NFL to make the playoffs this season. 

The Cleveland Browns were given the least hope of any team. You’d have to risk $1000 just to win $100 if you want to bet on them to not make the postseason. The Niners are right there at -900. 

In terms of making the playoffs, the Carolina Panthers are the biggest shoe-in at -600 while the Packers are -420 and the Seahawks are -400. 

Rory McILroy favored at Sawgrass for a reason

McIlroy is the only top 5-ranked golfer in the world without a victory this season. So why is he favored at 8-1 to win The Players Championship at the famed TPC Sawgrass? 
This is why: He’s -36 on the back 9 over last three years in this tournament which is 20 shots better than anyone else.

Blue Jays going UNDER at 87.5 percent  on the road

The Toronto Blue Jays sure know how to duck a total on the road. The O/U is 2-14-2 in Jays road games this season. That’s just silly.   

The Jays are the second-worst hitting team on the road in the majors (tied with the Yankees at .216). They also have the second-best ERA in the bigs at 2.68 (as of May 12). That’s a nice little recipe for going UNDER the number. 

The Cy Young ain’t what it’s cracked up to be

The Houston Astros’ Dallas Keuchel was last year’s flame throwing American League Cy Young Sportsbook. This year he is only setting flames to your bankroll. 

Keuchel is the second-most costly starting pitcher in all of MLB at 2-5 for a loss of $624 if you were using $100 units. Luis Severino is the worst with a loss of $693 but the Yankees have lost all of his six starts this year. Keuchel has actually won two games, which shows you how much chalk this guy is drawing this season.