Super Day For Bookies

On February 5, 2014, in Sporting News, by Buddy TB

Super Bowl XLVIIIBack in 2005, Super Bowl Sunday was one of the biggest days in the history of Nevada sports books and casinos. The overall handle turned out to be $90.8 Million and the books showed at $15.4 Million profit on the day. That’s a 17% hold! Last year the handle was $98.9 Million and expectations were high that the handle for 2014 would be in excess of one hundred million dollars.

This year’s Super Bowl between the Denver Broncos, who were 2.5 point favorites, and the Seattle Seahawks was preceded by more fanfare and speculation that ever before in history. Peyton Manning this and Peyton Manning that. However, by the end of the first half, it had become obvious that this was just not going to be Peyton’s day on the gridiron… and bookies everywhere were rejoicing.

No one expected the improbable blowout that followed. The whole day got off to an ominous start for the Broncos when the first snap from center flew over Manning’s head and into the end zone for a safety. It was the quickest score in the history of the Super Bowl, and that was just the beginning.

Tony Miller of the Golden Nugget, who was working his eighth Super Bowl for the Nugget, told reporters, “I can tell you already that we have never won as much in the Super Bowl since I’ve been here.  We had a 20% increase in handle overall, and I think that’s a great indication for the state to set a record. People were excited about this game.”

Excited yes, at first, then it turned to shock and even wandered into embarrassment as the game wore on. The Broncos just could not seem to get a grip on the game even though the weather was fine and they all came ready to play football. Not even the wildest handicapper predicted the lopsided 43 to 8 blowout that resulted.

Even though the Denver Broncos without Peyton Manning had been on the losing end of three similar Super Bowl blowouts back in the ‘80’s, the public came strong on the Broncos. Credit must go to most sports books for holding their ground and not moving the point spread to Broncos -3. A few tried it… but it didn’t last long as the wise guys were waiting for the move and jumped on it right away.

As Jimmy Vacarro of South Point put it, “Seattle winning outright was good; Seattle winning with the Over made it even better.”

 

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