Colts Super Bowl Prop Bets

Part 2 of Super Bowl Prop bets.  I’m not normally a prop bettor, but I usually make a handful of small prop picks for the Super Bowl.  Yesterday I had the game prop bets.  Today I go with the Colts individual and team prop bets.  Tomorrow the Saints.

All odds are from sportsbook.com and will likely change throughout the week.

Peyton Manning – Total Passing Yards – Must Play
Over 305.5 (-115)
Under 305.5 (-115)
Peyton Manning – Total Completions – Must Play
Over 25.5 (-115)
Under 25.5 (-115)
Peyton Manning – Total Pass Attempts – Must Play
Over 36.5 (-115)
Under 36.5 (-115)
Peyton Manning – Longest Completion – Must Play
Over 39.5 (-115)
Under 39.5 (-115)
Peyton Manning – Total Touchdown Passes Thrown – Must Play
Over 2.5 (-105)
Under 2.5 (-125)
Peyton Manning – What Will He Throw First – Must Play
Touchdown Pass -320
Interception +240
Peyton Manning – Will he Throw a 1st Quarter Touchdown Pass – Must Play
Yes +165
No -210
Peyton Manning – Will he Throw a 2nd Quarter Touchdown Pass – Must Play
Yes -130
No even
Peyton Manning – Will he Throw a 3rd Quarter Touchdown Pass – Must Play
Yes +145
No -185
Peyton Manning – Will he Throw a 4th Quarter Touchdown Pass – Must Play (Overtime Does NOT Count)
Yes -115
No -115
Peyton Manning – Will Have More Passing Yards In Which Half – Must Play
First Half -125
Second Half (Includes Overtime) -105
Over/Under FIRST Peyton Manning Touchdown Pass (No TD-No Action) – Must Play
Over 10.5 (-115)
Under 10.5 (-115)

Online Sports Betting at Sportsbook

Continue reading “Colts Super Bowl Prop Bets”

Super Bowl Game Prop Bets

The countdown is on for the Super Bowl.  All week I’ll be posting different bets available for the game.  I don’t care about the non-football bets so I won’t be posting how long the national anthem will take.  I’ll also be researching the options and make a handful of picks before game day.

All odds are from sportsbook.com and will likely change throughout the week.

Super Bowl XLIV – Coin Toss
Heads -101
Tails -101
Team to Win the Coin Toss
Saints -105
Colts -105
Team to Receive the Opening Kick Off
Saints -105
Colts -105
Saints – Total Points
Over 26 (-120)
Under 26
Total Kickoff Returns by Both Teams (Excludes Touchbacks/Out of Bonds/Fair Catches)
Over 9 (-135)
Under 9 (+105)
Team to Commit the 1st Penalty – Declined Penalties EXCLUDED
Saints -140
Colts +110

Online Sports Betting at Sportsbook

Continue reading “Super Bowl Game Prop Bets”

NFL Conference Finals Picks

The Super Bowl is almost upon us and the Jets are still alive!  What a great playoff run.  We keep JMP’s picks going.  As you’ll see, fantasy football wrap ups continue next week.

Online Sports Betting at Sportsbook

NYJ @ IND (-7.5): The Colts were well on their way to covering a spread like this when they pulled most/all their starters and blew any chance at a perfect season.  I don’t think the Jets can keep this close.  It’s been a great ride, but it’s over.  Colts to cover.

MIN @ NO (-3.5): interesting line; I would’ve expected 3.  I really think the Vikes have a chance to win this.  NO hasn’t been able to stop the run well since Sedrick Ellis returned from injury and if their secondary isn’t getting picks, their pass D isn’t great either.  This should be a high scoring game that comes down to a FG, either way.  So that extra half-point is key.  I like the Vikes.

Back next week with WR rankings and then in 2 weeks with RB rankings and I guess I’ll pick the last game of the season too!

Last week: 1-4

Playoffs: 2-6

Seven Stars Insider: December – January Edition

I usually share the Seven Stars Insider when the newest edition arrives.  I lost this one over the holidays and am just getting to it now.  There is plenty of good information on Total Rewards.  This is a great, easy read if you frequent Harrah’s properties.

Question Of The Month

I earned 100,000 tier points shortly before the end of 2009 (and continued to earn more points through December 31), is it true that I will be designated Seven Stars through March 31, 2011, and get all the benefits for two “years”? Yes, if by “year” you mean the one ending March 31, 2010, and the other ending March 31, 2011.  As long as you complete your trip and celebration dinner, as well as order your annual gift by March 31, 2010, you can do it all again anytime between April 1, 2010, and March 31, 2011.  And that’s in addition to all the other benefits connected with the blue and gray card.

Did You Attend The Signature Event In Atlantic City?

According to our October/November informal survey, the event was a real success – only a few minor quibbles (which is to be expected – you can’t please everyone).  Jerry Seinfeld got lots of raves, but Janice Dickinson didn’t fare as well.  “She was horrible,” one person wrote, “offering nothing.”  A sampling of other comments:

  • “I know there were complaints, but for me the fun and pleasure of it way outweighed the flaws that others complained about.  All in all I think they did a great job.”
  • “The event was definitely worth attending, although locals did get lost amidst the hubbub somewhat.”
  • “Some things were really well-handled, others got bungled.  Traffic management was hard – so many ‘heavy hitters,’ all, no doubt, with special needs.”
  • “There were a lot of nice touches (the taffy and peanuts welcome basket in the room, the notes every night about the next day’s schedule, etc.).”
  • “The ‘Dancing With The Stars’ thing [at Caesars] was kind of lackluster entertainment-wise, but the meal was good.”
  • “The welcome parties were waaay too crowded and the one at The Pier was particularly bad. . .and the food wasn’t that good or very substantial.”
  • “The welcome gift – crystal glasses – was not very practical for people who had to fly home.”
  • “The $50 food coupons should have been good any day of the weekend.  As it happens, they were only for days when they were already feeding us big time at an event.  How much can you eat in one day?  I would have liked to use the coupons on Sunday or Monday, but they were not good on those days.”
  • “I was disappointed that those arriving on Friday (me!) didn’t get their [free] slot play. . .didn’t seem fair.”
  • “Spa appointments were impossible to get, but it was good that the spa coupon was redeemable for merchandise (so I actually did get to use that one).”
  • “The fashion show (at least the spillover event at Bally’s I attended) was kind of a bust.  The meal was good, but the host – last year’s ‘Project Runway’ winner – wasn’t very comfortable in front of an audience.”

Seven Stars Club At Harrah’s Atlantic City Temporarily Closes Prior To Christmas Many Seven Stars members were surprised – and irritated – to find the club closed for a couple weeks in December, just as it was last year.  The same with the Diamond Lounges at Caesars, Harrah’s and Showboat.  [Bally’s Lounge operated on a limited schedule to help pick up the slack.]  As one reader wrote, “Just one more thing Harrah’s had to do to p***-off its best customers.”  How nice if Harrah’s had taken a cue from the Borgata in Atlantic City.  A couple years ago while it was expanding its Amphora Lounge – the equivalent of a Diamond Lounge, but with far better food and decor, it offered its Black Card players [a category similar to Diamond] complimentary cocktails and wine in its B Bar, as well as complimentary cocktails and wine to accompany meals at the buffet.  All you had to do was show your player’s card and an ID.  Though at the bufet there was a $10 per person comp charge levied, and it was limited to the player and one guest, it was a great benefit.  Even today, the Borgata offers its buffet – breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch any day of the week – for 10 comp dollars per person, again limited to the player and one guest.  And it’s still the best buffet – and with the classiest surroundings – in town.  [Unlike the Diamond Lounges and Seven Stars Clubs, the Amphora lounge levies a $10 per person comp charge, and is limited to the player and one guest.  Titanium cardholders – similar to Seven Stars – do not have similar restrictions.]

Special Seven Stars Self-Parking Benefits – An Update

In addition to the special Seven Stars dedicated parking on the seventh floor of Caesars in Atlantic City, each of the other Harrah’s properties has a special Seven Stars (and Diamond) express lane when you leave the self-parking lot (Caesars, Harrah’s and Bally’s) or at Showboat when you enter.  Several readers noted that Harrah’s Chester [Pennsylvania] has a specially-designated Seven Stars parking area on the third floor, but you need to display a special hangtag from your rear-view mirror; however, because the area is not monitored and no one enforces the restrictions, it’s really not much of a benefit.  Several informal “walk-throughs” of the area showed none of the cars or trucks parked there had the aforementioned hangtags, and neither did many of the other vehicles on the floor.  [The entire floor is supposed to be reserved solely for Seven Stars and Diamond players.]  Until Chester invests in a card-operated gate system like Caesars in Atlantic City or Windsor, Ontario, there are always going to be those who abuse the system.  Harrah’s in Reno has the same problem.

Harrah’s & Planet Hollywood

According to several reliable sources, Harrah’s Entertainment is moving forward on their much rumored takeover of the financially troubled Planet Hollywood resort and casino in Las Vegas.  The company filed papers with the Nevada Gaming Control Board that would give it permission to acquire the property.  The filing will now work its way through various regulatory agencies.  “Experts” anticipate a mid- to late-2010 completion of the process.  One columnist wrote, “The hotel will most likely keep the Planet Hollywood name but would get folded into Harrah’s very popular Total Rewards players’ club program.”

Continue reading “Seven Stars Insider: December – January Edition”

Legasse’s Stadium Review

I like sports betting.  It doesn’t matter if I’m in a casino or if I’m at home.  You may have noticed the sportsbook.com ad to the right and the posts tagged with sports betting.  Needless to say, one of the perks of staying at the Palazzo was the easy access to Legasse Stadium, which is their sportsbook.

Unfortunately, there are no pictures.  I’ve been scolded for having my phone out at every sportsbook I’ve been to so I didn’t take a chance.  I found some pictures online to add some color.

You’ll notice that I have the layout last here.  Describing how the room is laid out was kind of a chore, so I put it at the end.  You’ll see.

Location
Legasse Stadium is located in the lower level of the casino.  To get to it, you have to walk to the main entrance and take the escalator down and the walk back up a few stairs to the entrance.  There is a sportsbook outside, but it wasn’t open on any of the 4 days I went to Legasse.  It wasn’t a long walk to get to Legasse, but the location was away from the action of the casino and I didn’t like that.

Gambling
I have a short attention span and I enjoy other forms of gambling while I’m watching a game.  Legasse has this covered in three different ways.

There’s a blackjack machine, like the one below, in one of the Reserved “VIP” areas.  There’s video poker in the rear overlooking the “stadium” section.  There’s also a small room to the side with two blackjack tables and a craps table.  It had the feel of a sketchy back room somewhere, but it wasn’t sketchy when playing.

Unfortunately I didn’t notice the video poker until my last day betting.  The side room wasn’t open during the week, but I did enjoy it before the Saturday night.  I even won $50 playing blackjack for one shoe.  I didn’t play the blackjack machine, but my friends that did lost every time.

In Running Sports Betting
I thought this would be the most amazing thing to hit sports betting but it was not even close.  I only tried it once and was bored pretty easily.  I bought into a tablet to place bets during the Thursday night game, which was the Colts and Jaguars.  Since I was testing it out I made a small deposit of $100.  I thought I could bet on every play in every way.  I was hoping for a slew of prop bets, but I was mistaken.  I could only bet on whether drives would result in 1st downs, TD’s or turnovers.

Odds changed on every play so it was nearly impossible to submit a bet – even if only paying attention to the tablet.  That was very frustrating.  After getting yelled at by my friends for not getting bets in I passed the tablet off to my friends and had them try.  They couldn’t get the bets in either.

After a while we got some help from a very attractive girl who was walking around the casino helping people with in run betting.  Of course, she seemed to be the only one that could get bets in.

After a night of frustration with the in running sports betting I cashed out up $1.67.  Thankfully the Colts covered and the wings were good so it wasn’t a fruitless afternoon.

Food
Emeril Legasse is a famous chef, so I was looking forward to the food.  The menu selections looked pretty good in advance and the food didn’t disappoint.  I had buffalo wings on each of my 4 visits.  They were crisp and meaty and awesome.  I recommend them to anyone going.

I tried the Italian Sausage Arancini too.  These rice balls were good, but nothing too special.  Friends had the nachos and enjoyed them.  They spoke positively, but I was focused on the wings.

Usually sportsbooks have a place to grab a quick bite that isn’t so good so it was nice to have this kind of selection.

It was interesting that a friend of a friend of a friend from Las Vegas said that the locals have been saying that the food wasn’t too good.  We only snacked and everything seemed to be above average.

Layout
Here is a rough sketch of Legasse Stadium.  Details are below the picture.


Legasse stadium is not laid out like most sports books which are mostly chairs/race centers looking at a wall of TV’s.  Legasse has multiple sections for a variety of desires.  It doesn’t seems as if it was not created for the old man that sits and plays the ponies all day.  It feels as is Legasse Stadium was made to house lots of people that want to watch big games.

When you walk into Legasse Stadium you can go straight or left.  Straight ahead is the pit area with reserved couches against the right wall.  Also against the wall to the right are the restrooms and the gambling room.

The restrooms had the main game piped through the speakers.  TV’s would have been great here, but that’s besides the point.  The restrooms looked very clean which is a surprise when you have a room with dudes drinking.

The gambling room consists of an area with slot machines, 2 blackjack tables with 2 huge TV’s and a craps table with it’s own room.  There’s also a one person restroom back here if you need privacy.

The main sportsbook area that you see on the Legasse Stadium page on the Palazzo site is kind of a pit in the center of the room.  It’s lined with white couches arranged in tiers a la stadium seating.  The sportsbook is at the bottom of the pit with plenty of huge screens above.  There are dining tables to the sides of the stadium seating with three different entry points all around.

There is a bar and video poker machines located behind the stadium seating.  The bar was closed when I was there.  I’m assuming drinks aren’t free when you play video poker, but I didn’t sit and play so I don’t know for sure.

In the far left corner you can go outside and get some fresh air.  There are plenty of couches, tables and TV’s to enjoy yourself in the fresh air of the Las Vegas strip.  While exploring I sat outside looked at betting options drank a beer and smoked a cigar.  It was great weather outside and I loved it.

When you enter and go to the left you see a bar and more reserved seating and a long bar.  The bar is set against the back of the TV’s from the pit area of Legasse Stadium and lined with plenty of smaller TV’s of it’s own.  The bartender  who worked most nights was smoking hot.

I called in advance for reservations and sat in the reserved seating back in the back.  There are couches and modern chairs.  Everything was flanked with 20″ (or so) HDTV’s that featured any game you wanted.  For example; one night we had the Bruins game to the right, Jazz to the left and football game in front of us.  It was awesome and very comfortable.

Reservations
Like most sportsbooks, Legasse Stadium gets busy when major games and football is on.  I recommend calling in advance to reserve a spot.  For busy times there may be a minimum depending where you sit, but if you eat and/or drink the numbers are easily met.  Drink tickets are given out similarly to a regular sportsbook.

Overall
Overall, I had a great time each visit to Legasse Stadium.  It was a great place to watch the games with a very different vibe than most sportsbooks.  I was super comfortable and the prices were fair.

I’m not sure how I would have felt if I was alone just watching a game and not eating or drinking with friends, but that wasn’t the case for this trip.  Legasse Stadium may not be for everyone, but I recommend giving it a try.

As an aside, I think this was the only bar to show any sports at the Palazzo and I didn’t like that.  I like being able to sit at a bar and watch a game while I play a little video poker.   Especially if I hit a cold streak gambling.

World Series Of Poker 2010 Plans

The World Series of Poker (WSOP) for 2010 will take place between May 27 and July 17 and once again will be held at the Rio All-Suite Casino & Hotel in Las Vegas.  There will be a few additions to the WSOP this year, including a low-limit buy-in tournament.

…Another first at the WSOP this year, the first 5 weekends of the series will feature $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournaments with two starting flights.  May 29-30, June 5-6, June 12-13, June 19-20 and June 26-27 will offer No-Limit Hold’em players from the weekend warrior to the most advanced player the opportunity to compete in some of the largest fields of the year for huge prize pools and a gold bracelet.  A sixth event on July 1-2, will also offer the same event at the same buy-in level, just days before the Main Event commences.

Visit WSOP’s site for full information

Slot Machines Slow The Bleed

Sex And The City Slot Machine
Sex And The City Slot Machine

New slot machines look to slow the bleed of your money and I’m ok with that.  IGT recently released their “Sex and the City” slot machines which include more small bonuses that look to prolong game play  as opposed to big jackpots that may provoke you to leave after getting a big win.

I have a love/hate relationship with low limits slots.  I hate knowing that I’m playing only to lose money.  The lower the denomination on a slot machine the lower the payout percentage.  I love the lights and noises that come along with these games.  I’m easily attracted to the shiny objects.

After having a bad time with penny slots earlier this year I learned how to have fun with them again.  I usually only play early in the morning while I drink coffee and ramp up the day.  I need at least one cup of coffee before I can gamble socially.  I will also play penny slots with friends that enjoy them the same way.  It’s fun to hoot and holler over winning $1.12.

These games aren’t about winning to me.  They’re about having fun.

Blackjack at The Palazzo and The Venetian

A little more research for my trip to Las Vegas brings me to blackjack.

Blackjack on the Las Vegas strip over the past couple of years has gone from paying out 3:2 to 6:5 for blackjack in many casinos.  For example; the Harrah’s properties seem to exclusively only pay out 6:5 on blackjack.

I look for any advantage I can get so I look for 3:2 blackjack.

On a small scale this isn’t much of a big deal, but the house edge increases about 1.5% when only paying out 6:5.  One of the reasons people play blackjack is that the house edge is so small that money lasts for a while.

You can check house edge based on different rules with the calculator on Wizard of Odds.

Sometimes to offset a 3:2 blackjack game casinos will use a continuous shuffling machine (CSM).  I don’t like playing these kind of tables because every hand is like the first hand being dealt from a shoe.  There is no counting cards with a CSM and no predictability of the upcoming cards.  I don’t count cards, but I pay attention to face cards and usually know when the deck is heavy or light with face cards.

Until this research I thought the CSM decreased player odds a lot.  I never looked at the math behind a CSM.  The CSM actually decreases house advantage. This surprised me, but it’s hard to argue with the math.  This only changes my mind a little.  I still don’t want to play a game with a CMS, but with this knowledge I hate it a little less.

On to my research for my house casino(s) – Palazzo and Venetian.  I found that they both have plenty of blackjack that is hand hand shuffled and dealt from a shoe and pays 3:2.  After my last trip where I saw only 6:5 games at Caesars Palace this is nice to see.  I didn’t play any blackjack on that trip.  Onward and upward!

Video Poker At The Palazzo and The Venetian

**UPDATE**

The day I landed in Las Vegas I was given a heads up that there was no more 9/6 Jacks or Better video poker at either Venetian or Palazzo.  That was lame.  Details to follow as I write up my trip.

** ORIGINAL POST BELOW**

I’ve been doing some preparation for my trip to Las Vegas as always.  I did so much prep last time that I don’t feel the need to do so much this time.  I really only play video poker at my home casino so I kept my research to the Palazzo and Venetian.  A friend is staying at Caesars Palace, but I know there aren’t any good paying games there.

Sources: vpFREE2 and @palazzolasvegas

Palazzo
99.54% JoB 1-2-3-4-6-9-25-50-800 JoB (FP)
(?) $2/$5 1 Play Slant just inside and outside high limit room
98.44% JW 1-1-2-3-5-7-17-50-100-200-940
(8) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1 Play Up between walkway to Venetian and Laguna Bar
98.01% BP 1-2-3-4-5-7-25-40-80-50-800
(1) 25¢ 3/5/10 1 Play STP Up between slot club and Grand Lux Cafe
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1 Play SP Slant scattered around casino
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5/10 Play MG Slant scattered around casino
97.87% DDB 1-1-3-4-5-9-50-80-160-160-400-50-800
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5/10 1 Play MG Slant scattered around casino
(10) 25¢ 1 Play Prog Up between slot club and Grand Lux Cafe
Venetian
99.54% JoB 1-2-3-4-6-9-25-50-800 JoB (FP)
(?) 1 Play Slant
98.73% TB+ 1-1-3-4-5-8-50-120-240-100-800
(14) $1, $2, $5 1 Play Slant near food court
98.45% JoB 1-2-3-4-5-9-25-50-800
(3) $1, $2 1 Play SP Slant in the high limit room
(3) $1, $2 10 Play Slant in the high limit room
(3) $1, $2, $5 3/5 Play Slant in the high limit room
98.01% BP 1-2-3-4-5-7-25-40-80-50-800
25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5 Play Up and slant-tops scattered around casino
(7) $1 1 Play Prog Slant near food court
(10) $1 3 Play Prog Slant near poker room
(4) $5 1 Play Prog Slant in high-limit room
97.87% DDB 1-1-3-4-5-9-50-80-160-160-400-50-800
(10) 25¢ 1 Play Prog Slant location and game details are unknown

Palazzo

99.54% JoB 1-2-3-4-6-9-25-50-800 JoB (FP)
(?) $2/$5 1 Play Slant just inside and outside high limit room

98.44% JW 1-1-2-3-5-7-17-50-100-200-940
(8) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1 Play Up between walkway to Venetian and Laguna Bar

98.01% BP 1-2-3-4-5-7-25-40-80-50-800
(1) 25¢ 3/5/10 1 Play STP Up between slot club and Grand Lux Cafe
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1 Play SP Slant scattered around casino
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5/10 Play MG Slant scattered around casino

97.87% DDB 1-1-3-4-5-9-50-80-160-160-400-50-800
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5/10 1 Play MG Slant scattered around casino
(10) 25¢ 1 Play Prog Up between slot club and Grand Lux Cafe

Venetian

99.54% JoB 1-2-3-4-6-9-25-50-800 JoB (FP)
(?) 1 Play Slant Location unknown

98.73% TB+ 1-1-3-4-5-8-50-120-240-100-800
(14) $1, $2, $5 1 Play Slant near food court

98.45% JoB 1-2-3-4-5-9-25-50-800
(3) $1, $2 1 Play SP Slant in the high limit room
(3) $1, $2 10 Play Slant in the high limit room
(3) $1, $2, $5 3/5 Play Slant in the high limit room

98.01% BP 1-2-3-4-5-7-25-40-80-50-800
(?) 25¢, 50¢, $1 1/3/5 Play Up and slant-tops scattered around casino
(7) $1 1 Play Prog Slant near food court
(10) $1 3 Play Prog Slant near poker room
(4) $5 1 Play Prog Slant in high-limit room

97.87% DDB 1-1-3-4-5-9-50-80-160-160-400-50-800
(10) 25¢ 1 Play Prog Slant location and game details are unknown

Blackjack Switch

A friend of mine recently told me about Blackjack Switch.  My friends rarely tell me about a casino game that I don’t know about.  That sent me into research mode.  I had to find out what this game was all about.  I think I like what I found.

Explanation of Blackjack Switch.

  • The player makes two bets on two hands of blackjack.  The cards are all dealt face up.  The player is allowed to switch cards between those hands.  For example; if the player is dealt a 10-5 and A-5, the player can switch the hands to have 10-A and 5-5.
  • Blackjack is paid 1:1 instead of 3:2 like the normal game or even 6:5 like we’re seeing more often and dealers hit on soft 17.
  • If a player switches cards and get’s 21 it is not blackjack and will push against 21 or 22 by the dealer.
  • The dealer plays until 22.  If the dealer gets 22 then the hand is a push.
  • There is also a bonus bet.  The bonus bet pays anywhere from 1:1 for a pair all the way to 40:1 for four of a kind.

Blackjack Switch sounds like fun to me, but what seals the deal is the house advantage

Default House Advantage for Blackjack Switch is .58%.  That can be lower depending on the house rules.  The bonus bet has a house edge of 2.55%.  Normal blackjack has a house edge of approximately .63%, depending on the rules.

Blackjack switch seems a lot more fun then some of the other carnival type games that I’ve tried in the casinos.  I will give it a shot on my next trip to Vegas, but won’t likely go out of my way to play it.  No game really makes me do that.

Sources:
Wizard of odds: Blackjack switch

Wizard of odds: Blackjack

Wikipedia