bettingroundup012417 Betting roundup

Patriots open as 3-point Super Bowl favorites; Browns attracted more SB 51 bets than Falcons

Twice weekly, we’ll comb through as many articles, tweets and podcasts as we can find related to the world of sports betting and daily fantasy sports, and publish the good stuff here. 

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The New England Patriots open as a 3-point favorite over the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.

“Matt Ryan and the Falcons look unstoppable but now they’re going up against (Tom) Brady and the Patriots, who look just as good and are more experienced going into this,” said Jason McCormick, sports book director at Red Rock Resort. “I think that’s going to weigh on everyone’s head, and it wouldn’t surprise me if this went up.”

McCormick went into Sunday expecting to post the Patriots as a 3.5-point favorite over the Falcons in their potential matchup. Atlanta essentially shaved off a half-point by blowing out Green Bay 44-21 as 6-point favorites in the NFC Championship Game.


Odds for the Falcons to win the Super Bowl before the season were 100-to-1 or higher and attracted less bets than the Cleveland Browns to win it all.

“We took a $5,000 bet at 40-1 on the Falcons to win the Super Bowl,” CG Technology vice president Jason Simbal said. The ticket would net $200,000. “And we still win almost a million on the Falcons. That’s how few people bet them.”

Golden Nugget just launched a sports betting app in Nevada and Wynn is set to release theirs next month.

Still, Director of Race and Sports at Golden Nugget, Tony Miller, believes their app is to become one of the best Vegas sport betting options thanks to the “independent lines and odds” that the casino has as well as the variety of proposition bets and events that other sportbooks from the area lack. Namely, the betting variety will cover all the markets currently offered at Golden Nugget’s Race and Sports Book, including totals markets, straight and money line bets, future markets, prop bets, match-ups and parlays.

Boxer Floyd Mayweather posted screenshots of winning bets on the Falcons and other games in recent days with winnings adding up to $160,000.

Anyone who bet on them came away satisfied. One of those people was Floyd Mayweather. Now that he’s hung up his gloves, he’s made a ton of money on sports betting. This weekend was just another example of that. In the past three days, he made $45,000 on the Golden State Warriors to beat the Houston Rockets, and $100,000 on Cincinnati to beat Tulane by more than 16 points.

Once the NFL Playoffs rolled around, he wasn’t finished. The Falcons were six-point favorites to beat the Packers, but that wasn’t going to make Floyd a lot of money. Instead, he got creative and bet on the Falcons to win by more than three points at halftime. They went above and beyond when they rushed out to a 24-0 lead. And after placing a $30,000 bet, Mayweather collected $55,000 from the Falcons.

ESPN published a feature on the unregulated, multibillion dollar gambling world of Counter-Strike “skins.”

But Valve also leaves a door open into the programming of its virtual world, one that allows skins to move out of Steam and into a murky constellation of gambling websites, where they’re used as currency. Some $5 billion was wagered in skins in 2016, according to research by the firms Eilers & Krejcik Gaming and Narus Advisors. While about 40 percent of them are bet on esports matches and tournaments, says Chris Grove, who authored a study for the companies, roughly $3 billion worth flows to a darker corner of the internet — one populated by fly-by-night websites that accept skins for casino-style gaming. Here, the games are simple, the action is fast and new sites open as soon as others close. Plenty of adults visit these sites, but with virtually no age restrictions, kids are also able to gamble their skins — often bought with a parent’s credit card — on slots, dice, coin flips or roulette spins. At least one site even has pro sports betting.

So far, a supercomputer running Libratus (a poker superprogram) has yet to best humans in heads-up no limit Texas Hold ’em.

By the end of the month, the human quartet will have played 120,000 hands against “the bot,” as they all called it. It’s a rematch of 2015’s showdown, during which 80,000 hands were played and the humans — two of whom are back this year — outplayed a similar bot. But this year’s A.I. iteration is stronger and faster. And next year’s will be stronger and faster still. In the long run, it’s a lost cause — the four pros admit that a bot will win eventually. But they aren’t about to give up without a fight.