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On May 22, 2019, in Gambling Headlines, by Bobby Goodspeed

Up in Everett, Massachusetts, just outside of Boston, Las Vegas based Wynn Resorts is just putting the finishing touches on a brand now $2.6 Billion Casino and Hotel on the waterfront.  It’s called ‘the Encore Boston Harbor’ and apparently has been sold before even opening its doors to the public.

The Encore Boston Harbor, in its entirety, will soon be sold to arch rival MGM Resorts International according to the latest reports out of Boston.

Wynn Resorts obtained the necessary licenses and permissions to build the massive 671 room Hotel and Casino on Boston Harbor in Everett back in 2013 and started construction on the waterfront facility at once.  Opening day has been set for the mid June but could be delayed in light of these latest developments.

It will be interesting to watch how this works out as MGM already has an operating Casino over in Springfield and the Massachusetts Gaming Commission forbids any one company from obtaining more than one gambling license within the state.

There is a bit of sordid history between the members of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission and former chief executive officer for Wynn Resorts, Steve Wynn which ended up costing Mr. Wynn a cool $35 million in fines after the Resort was found to have failed to disclose allegations of sexual misconduct against the former CEO.

Wynn Resorts might just have good reason to be getting out of the area as the Massachusetts Gaming Commission has also levied an additional half million dollar fine against its new CEO Matthew Maddox.

Both Wynn and MGM have affirmed that these negotiations will not affect anyone’s jobs nor delay the grand opening of the Encore Boston Harbor.  In a joint statement to the press the two sides allowed, “Over the past several weeks, we have engaged in conversations around the potential sale of Encore Boston Harbor,” the companies said in the statement. “They are very preliminary and of the nature that publicly traded corporations like ours often engage in…..however we can reaffirm our commitment to the communities where we operate today”.

Which all sounds a lot like corporate ‘mumbo-jumbo’ and really says nothing at all.  What seems apparent is that Wynn Resorts has used up all the good faith the state of Massachusetts has to offer and will soon be moving on to greener pastures.

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On May 22, 2019, in Sporting News, by Bobby Goodspeed

Looking at those astronomical contracts major league athletes are signing these days leads one to wonder if they are actually worth it.  Exactly how special are they?  What does it take to be a major league ball player?

First of all, they have to totally dedicate their lives to their sport. If you are going to be a major league baseball player, you play baseball every day of your life, for your whole life. And for every hour spent on a baseball diamond, 2 or 3 are spent in the weight room or in other forms of training and conditioning.

These young fellows they call ‘rookies’  we see taking the field in a major league ball park for the first time have already played in thousands of baseball games, some of them for championships at local, state or even national levels, long before arriving at MLB.  Their entire youth is spent striving to reach the major leagues only to find out when they finally get there that it is even harder to stay a big leaguer than to become on in the first place.

But how hard is it?  One would think that a gifted athlete, even though not brought up majoring in the baseball, could still make the transition using his natural and developed athletic abilities.  Surely that could be done, right?

Now we have a guy out there who was a great football player, highly intelligent, gifted athlete, Heisman Trophy winner and NCAA National Championship winner, who wants more than anything to play major league baseball. You know the guy, it’s Tim Tebow.

Tebow does not need to prove anything, and he doesn’t need the money, but ole Tim is out there busting his butt every day trying his best just to make it in the minor leagues, and struggling a bit at times at that.  Tim is finding out first hand just how hard it is to be a big leaguer.

That right there should be ample evidence of just how difficult it is to make it in the majors and thrive there.  Those that do make it are living the dream, but at a price.  Professional athletes must, by definition of the job, give themselves over to the team and the team time table and team discipline for a large portion of the year.

But of course these guys are being paid big bucks to play a game they love.  They would gladly be doing it for a lot less money if modern economics didn’t dictate the high salaries we see today.  They are having fun out there!

Part of the enjoyment of watching a baseball game, especially being there in person, is picking up on the energy generated by the players executing their sport with precision skills, and having a ball doing it.

But it still ain’t exactly easy.  Just watch how many of big leaguers show up on the disabled list every day, it’s always something.  When you go all out at full speed, you stand a chance of getting hurt, but that’s part of the game and yet another example of how tuff it is to be a big leaguer.  Just ask Tim Tebow.

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On May 21, 2019, in Gambling Headlines, Sporting News, by Bobby Goodspeed

Sometimes the things that we at first perceive of as bargains end up being more costly in the long run than it would have been to go ahead and get the better quality product in the first place. This holds especially true for PPH Services.

If you look closely at the available price per head services being offered to bookmakers these days you will quickly begin to see that not all PPH Services are alike.  There are the good, the bad and the ugly.

Yes, there are, unfortunately, some companies offering pay per head services that are downright ugly. They offer what they cannot provide and end up stealing your clients to their own sports book interests.

The bad ones are just that.  They have not invested in the proper infrastructure to provide the professional bookmaker with the necessary tools to operate his or her business on a first class professional level and provide their clients with excellent, uninterrupted services that they have come to expect.  Most times these ‘bad’ companies will fail you at the worst possible time and leave you hanging and explaining why to your clients.

Then we have the rarest of them all, the few good PPH Service Companies like HostPPH.com which have almost 20 years in the industry working exclusively with professional bookies.  The dedicated folks at Host have taken the time and made the necessary investments in state of the art equipment and a highly trained professional staff that dedicates itself to keeping their clients happy, and you making money.

Of course the quality companies are going to have to charge a little more in order to give you better service. That holds true in almost any industry. However, you will find at the end of the month, you will end up with a greater hold percentage than you would have at the cut-rate shop…..and have lots happier clients as well!

Don’t take a chance on your business. Remember, what the price per head company puts up online for you will be representing you to your players. These days players are looking for high quality, friendly ease of access to wagering with no hassles and no delays. Provide that for them and they will keep on coming back for more.

Check around, the companies that have been in this business for a long time have hundreds of bookmakers as clients and thousands of daily players. All of those guys and gals know about the cheapo options….but they stay where they know that they and their players will always be well taken care of at Host PPH.com.

Remember also that the price per head service you contract will also be keeping track of all of your wagers and records as well as dealing directly with your players on a daily basis. Yes, with PPH you can forget about that incriminating little black book….but be very careful to whom you turn your record keeping over to. Think about it!

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Since winning their first NBA Championship since 1975 by defeating LeBron’s Cleveland Cavaliers back during the short reign of head coach David Blatt, the Golden State Warriors, behind the always entertaining antics of Stephen Curry, have pretty much dominated professional basketball in North America.

The Warriors are the new kids on the block, although Golden State actually won the NBA title way back in 1975. The Cleveland Cavaliers have hung around to challenge the Warriors for every NBA Finals series since 2015, until now. For the first time in a long time, the Cavs did not even make it to the NBA playoffs and have been home watching the finals on TV, which must seem very strange to some team members.

The Warriors defeated the Cavaliers for the 2015 title then Tyronn Lue took over as head coach in Cleveland and the Cavs managed to beat the Warriors in an exciting 7 game series in 2016.  2017 and 2018 saw the same bill of fare at the finals with Golden State winning and maintaining the NBA title both years. A championship they are now bound to defend yet again.

Now, four years hardly constitutes a bona-fide dynasty, but it’s off to a very good start.  The storied franchise of the Boston Celtics holds the mark for the most NBA titles at 17.  More impressive yet is that the Celtics did it 8 times in a row from 1959 until 1966.  We will see how the Warriors stack up to that record.

The Lakers of Los Angeles have contested the title more than any other team since the Finals were began BACK in 1947 with 31 appearances, the most recent of which came from 2008-2010 under head coach Phil Jackson.  Oddly enough, the Golden State Warriors have never faced their in-state rival Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals.

Now the Warriors have punched their ticket to the final round of the 2019 NBA Finals while the Lakers, the Celtics and the Cavaliers are long gone. Golden State staged another of its famous second half comebacks to eliminate the Portland Trail Blazers, and the younger Curry brother, from competition.

The Warriors are a little banged up having lost both super-star Kevin Durant and his buddy Andre Iguodala to calf injuries. Even so, they are a formidable basketball team displaying both speed and agility as well as an exceptional basketball I.Q. every time they take the court.

The remaining core of the Warrior team consists of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green to whom double and even triple doubles are becoming commonplace.  The pinpoint shooting accuracy and smothering defense of Golden State put away an excellent Portland team lead by Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum in four straight matches.

So now the Warriors are resting up and awaiting the winners of the Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptor series.  While Las Vegas oddsmakers are listing the Raptors at +1000 and the Bucks at Even money, wagering on Golden State requires that the bettor must risk $450 to win $100.

So, odds are, the Warrior dynasty is likely to continue for another year at least.

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On May 16, 2019, in Gambling Headlines, Sporting News, by Bobby Goodspeed

The 2019 Kentucky Derby was a mess.  Messy track, messy horses, messy jocks and messy finish. Controversial to say the least.  Articles are still being written about the Derby finish over a week after the event.  The Maximum Security camp is still sure that they won the race and were robbed of the victory. The Country House camp is counting their blessings and holding pat.

But the Triple Crown must go on and the second leg is set to run this weekend at Pimlico Race Course outside of Baltimore.  Funny thing is, neither Maximum Security nor Country House will be running in the 2019 Preakness Stakes.  In fact only four horses that participated in the Kentucky Derby this year will be running at Pimlico.

The Preakness is a mile and three sixteenths long race that falls between the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes in both time and the length of the race. The purse this year will be around $1,500,000, which is a lot of money.

Such is the importance of the Triple Crown races that NBCSports will air a total of 7 hours of coverage from Pimlico featuring stakes-rich race cards and culminating in the running of the 144th Preakness Stakes. Post time for the big race is set at 6:50 EST, preceded by all the pomp and circumstance relegated to such a dignified event.

Those in attendance at the race will be ‘dressed to the nines’, as they say. The lucky ones will have ‘paddock passes’ which will allow them to walk through the paddocks where the horses and kept and prepped for the races.  Walking among these magnificent creatures at rest and feeling the pent up energy all around them is one of the more unforgettable race day experiences for many, and to some, more fun than the race itself.

Of course, the favorites for the Preakness are the top horses remaining from the derby entrants.  Improbable ran strong in Louisville but was blocked for most of the way around the back stretch.  He is picked as the favorite at 5-2 to win at Pimlico as legendary trainer, and 2 time Triple Crown winner, Bob Baffert, will coach both horse and jockey to maximum effort to win the second leg of the 2019 Triple Crown.

Close behind comes another veteran from the Derby, War of Will, who was embroiled in the bumping controversy with Maximum Security.  The longer track should tell the tale for trainer Mark Casse and War of Will who is currently listed at 4-1.

This year at Pimlico they have a local favorite running in the Preakness by the name of Alwaysmining coming off of six straight wins at Laurel Park and going off at 8-1 with strong local support.

So, grab a Daily Racing Form, study up and place your wagers for the Preakness Stakes for 2019.

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