Posted 2/9/11 : Sports books report lowest win since 1998
It was slim pickings for licensed Las Vegas sports books last weekend, when the Super Bowl football final between Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers played out in Arlington, Texas.
It wasn’t for want of wagers – the gamblers turned out in force – so much as the result going generally against the bookies, ESPN reports.
The Nevada Gaming Commission gave a figure of $87.5 million wagered across 183 sports books in the state, which has exclusivity on legal sports betting in the US; from this, the bookies scored only $724 000.
"I can't say I've got a cheese head in my office right now," Jay Kornegay, executive director of the race and sports book at the Las Vegas Hilton, told ESPN in a reference to the win by the Packers.
Green Bay beat the Steelers 31-25 Sunday night. The Packers were a 2½-point favorite in most Las Vegas casinos, giving their supporters a win with the six-point victory. The combined 56 points scored helped bettors who gambled that the total would go over about 45 points.
Gamblers wagered 5.5 percent more this year than last year, when Nevada casinos won $6.9 million on $82.7 million in Super Bowl bets.
ESPN researchers report that the casinos have lost only once on the Super Bowl in the last 10 years; in 2008 when bettors gambled $92 million and casinos lost $2.57 million as the New York Giants beat New England.
This year was the slimmest winning Super Bowl for casinos since 1998, when books won $472,000 on $77.2 million in wagers.