Life On The Line Movie

Life On The Line Movie Art
Life On The Line

I caught wind about “Life On The Line” earlier this week listening to Teddy Covers on the radio. “Life On The Line” is a documentary on sports bettors and the sports betting industry (at least LVH sportsbook). “Life On The Line” won’t be in theaters and it won’t be available on Netflix but you can download and stream the movie from the Las Vegas Vegas Advisor website beginning January 27. Here’s how they describe the movie.

With unprecedented access behind the scenes at LVH’s “SuperBook” and featuring a cast of legends from the Las Vegas sport-betting world, including long-time Hilton/LVH oddsmaker Jay Kornegay, two-time Supercontest champion Steve Fezzik, hedge-fund manager John Netto, long-time Vegas pro-bettors including Erin Rynning, Teddy Covers, Bryan Leonard, Bruce Marshall, and Alf Musketa, and well-known local sports talk radio hosts Brian Blessing and Ken Thompson, Life on the Line promises to take viewers deep inside the esoteric and usually closed world of that rare breed of gambler who’s able to make a successful living betting sports.

The website doesn’t have prices for download or stream but I think Teddy Covers mentioned it would be only $5, but don’t hold me to that. The trailer looks like this will be an interesting movie if you’re into sports, sports betting and Las Vegas. I like all of those things and I look forward to checking this out.

Interview With Jay Kornegay From LVH

Jay Kornegay from the LVH SuperBook is one of the more senior sportsbook bosses in Las Vegas today. He’s often the go-to guy for mainstream media when they have questions about sports betting.

In most of his interviews he comes across as being candid, which isn’t something you see from many casino executives. This interview from Calvin Ayer is no different and touches on the current state of sportsbooks, LVH SuperBook and the future of sportsbooks.

Interview with Jay Kornegay of The LVH SuperBook Video 

If you’d like to read more, there is an accompanying article with the video on CalvinAyer.com.

If you read really fast or have 10 hours to kill, there’s a very long article on the SuperContest at LVH on SBNation. I haven’t read this yet, but people say it’s a good read.

Rumor: LVH May Become Vegas International Casino and Hotel

At the end of 2011 Hilton decided not to renew their license with the casino that’s been known as the Las Vegas Hilton for years. The owners decided to keep continuity with the name by calling the property LVH. Well, the LVH has new owners and may have another new name next year.

Could the casino now known as the LVH wind up with the name Vegas International Casino + Hotel?

American Casino and Entertainment Properties LLC (ACEP), which applied for a trademark for the name and accompanying logo, is in the middle of the month during which outsiders can register their opposition. This standard part of the process ends Nov. 22.

Executives at ACEP, owned by an affiliate of Goldman Sachs & Co., declined to comment on what they would do with the name. “What’s in the public record is in the public record,” said spokeswoman Kathy Topp.

If you’re familiar with Vegas history you might remember that this property was called Vegas International before becoming the Hilton. Back then it was home to a guy named Elvis.He’s kind of a big deal.

Renaming the hotel Vegas International and bringing back Vegas history may help the casino find some identity and a niche with older Las Vegas vacationers. The article mentions that many of the acts already booked at LVH would make sense with this possible vintage rebranding.

If the LVH opts to adopt a version of its original International name, it would fit with an entertainment lineup heavy with acts that gray-haired guests can remember from when they were young. The current lineup includes impressionist Rich Little, the Doobie Brothers, a Rat Pack tribute group and an Elvis impersonator, reprising the hotel’s most famous headliner.

LVH is a filthy lifeless dump of a casino that offers nothing besides a large sportsbook and something to do when taking a break from the Las Vegas Convention Center.

This rebranding, along with a major deep cleaning and new ventilation, could help the casino continue to stay in business.

photo: Elvis Australia (1961 at Vegas International)

LVH (Formerly Las Vegas Hilton) Sold

LVH (formerly known as Las Vegas Hilton) was sold today in a foreclosure auction. For the time being, nothing will change.

“The future is bright for the LVH on all fronts,” said Rick Stevens, chief operating officer of the Navegante Group, which said the sale ended uncertainties about the property.

Today’s sale capped a tumultuous 12 months for the Paradise Road property, which went into foreclosure proceedings last fall, early in the year lost its Hilton franchise and then was placed under control of a court-appointed receiver.

People are saying all the right things about LVH and that’s because they’re paid too. The future is the opposite of bright for LVH on all fronts.

Besides the historic SuperBook (and overrated sportsbook) and it’s connection to the Las Vegas Convention Center there is little good at this dirty old non-strip casino.

Expect more news to follow. If you are a fan of LVH I recommend you keep an eye on SuperBook boss Jay Kornegay. If he stays with LVH you should expect that good things are coming. If he leaves, expect bad things to follow.

Get Ready For Elvis and Sexy Blackjack at LVH

LVH (formerly Las Vegas Hilton) has been in financial trouble for a while. They’re currently in foreclosure and expect to find a new owner soon. In the meantime the LVH is getting new management with the Navegante Group. Navegante Group is known for turning around casino properties.

In 2005 Navegante was contracted by Tamaras Group to take over the existing operations as the lessee/manager of four hotel/casino properties in downtown Las Vegas: the Plaza, Las Vegas Club, Western and Gold Spike. Navegante, in conjunction with Tamaras, was responsible for a rapid and dramatic turnaround, taking the properties from major losses to positive cash flow. In May 2007, Navegante provided Tamaras with notice of termination of the lease agreements.

I’m pretty sure that Sexy blackjack didn’t begin at Gold Spike until after Navegante Group moved on from managing the property, but the image of mixing cheap gambling with good odds and Elvis sounds like fun and might be the only reason I’d return to LVH.

As you can see below, Elvis is already sexed up with his lei outside of LVH.

LVH Elvis

I was at LVH on Friday for the SuperContest seminars and spent maybe 45 seconds in the sportsbook. Even though there was nobody near me smoking the sportsbook was super smokey just like the last time I went to the SuperBook. It’s a great space, but smells so bad that it’s almost impossible to breath.

Great marketing and history draws people the SuperBook, but if they don’t get some bleach and ventilation then it’s all for naught because nobody that likes to breath (like me) will return.

Maybe new management will do that, but since sportsbooks only effect 1% of a casino’s income I expect nothing good to happen to the sportsbook. And that’s a shame.

Just What is Vegas International?

Yes, I’m a bit late on this but I’ve also been out of town.  Now that I’m back and catching up I wanted to touch on this.  Last week on the VegasTripping boards Twitter friend @vespajet noticed that American Casino Entertainment Properties (ACEP), owners of the Stratosphere, have registered the trademark the name Vegas International Hotel and Casino.  The logo they registered is above and ACEP has also registered the domain vegasinternationalhotel.com.

The discussion began with some surmising that the Stratosphere could be renamed soon.  However, in a later comment, Vespajet made the point that “ACEP is a subsidiary of Whitehall Street Real Estate Funds, which is a subsidiary of Goldman Sachs. Whitehall Street owns a 40% stake in the LVH and Goldman Sachs last Fall filed for foreclosure on the LVH due to missed payments on a loan.”

I think that is the smoking gun  I mentioned in a VegasChatter piece on Wednesday that the LVH still has yet to replace any signage.  All signs either have Hilton covered up or removed, but no new LVH signage has been added.  I made the comment that LVH is clearly a holding name, like when the Atlantic City Hilton became ACH and then The Atlantic Club.

When you factor in that the original name of the former Las Vegas Hilton was The International, the name makes some sense.  It gives the property an identity beyond some initials.  However a new name won’t simply make the place great.  Hopefully along with the name will come the much needed maintenance and upgrades the property so desperately needs.

Most Overrated Sportsbooks In Las Vegas (2012)

Yesterday I shared my list of favorite sportsbooks to watch and bet on games in Las Vegas. Frankly, most sportsbooks are fine as long as there is a game on and room to sit but those are my favorites.

Today, I’ll discuss the two most overrated sportsbooks in Las Vegas that many seem to like, I just don’t prefer them. Hence, these two sportsbooks are overrated to me.

  1. LVH (Formerly Las Vegas Hilton) – The LVH sportsbook is legendary. So much so that’s it’s put on a pedestal by sports geeks like me. When I finally made it to LVH it was for a Saturday during the college football season. The LVH sportsbook is huge and there is a lot of seating (both desk and lounge chairs) and TV’s. There is even a little room that has been upgraded with couches to watch games. Further, LVH will open their theater for big games. So, why is the LVH sportsbook overrated? Because it’s a filthy, outdated sportsbook with a poor location. It’s a place any sports geek should visit once to see and determine for themselves. It was just too gnarly for me to ever return.
  2. M Resorts – M Resorts is home to the first Cantor Gaming sportsbook in Las Vegas. When walking around the 5 year old casino, you get a feeling that the place is still new. Unfortunately when you enter the sportsbook if feels old. Technology has come a long way and you can see it here. There’s nothing wrong with the M Resorts sportsbook, but it’s not the be all and end all that many make it out to be. Besides the older looking TV’s, the seating is similar Cantor Gaming work stations that are seen in all their sportsbooks just old. There is a VIP area with couches, but unless you bet over $10,000 per game don’t expect special treatment.

Neither the LVH or M Resorts sportsbooks are bad. They just aren’t as great as many will say. LVH is dirty and M doesn’t cater to most gamblers. M is a beautiful casino and even though the sportsbook is just ok it’s about 15 minutes away from the Vegas strip and worth the trip if you have time. Unfortunately the same can’t be said for LVH, but it’s worth experiencing once in your life.

Next week, I’ll come back with some underrated sportsbooks in Las Vegas. They aren’t places I frequent, but places I’ve been and have treated me well.

Hilton Dead – Long Live LVH

Las Vegas Hilton is just about gone with the Hilton brand name coming down from the ubiquitous sign today. The hotel will run under the LVH moniker, similar to the way that Atlantic City Hilton is now ACH. It’s not difficult that these names are just money saving place holders until the properties can be sold to new owners and renamed.

In the meantime, there are a lot of memories that coincide with the Hilton brand name. Much like the Sahara, I’m indifferent. It’s not a place I have any memories from this casino.

VIVA LA LVH!

Photo: Matthew Adams on twitpic