Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:54 AM

Books win Super Bowl 54

Vegas bookmakers capture SB54 win

Super Bowl 54 went extremely well for Nevada sportsbooks, and I believe it was at a much higher ratio of success than all our European friends in other states that have hopped the pond looking forward to dominance in the U.S. market.
 
The first thing I thought while getting early returns from Nevada sportsbooks after the Chiefs 31-20 win against the 49ers (+1.5, 53.5) in Super Bowl 54 was how my Euro friends may have blundered the Super Bowl of American football like last year when New Jersey lost 4.5 million. 
 
In 2020, Nevada books rolled, and the others elsewhere; not so much.
 
“We got the result we wanted, “ said MGM Resorts sportsbook director Jeff Stoneback. “It was our best day since 2008.”
 
Stoneback quickly corrected the notion of booking the game the same way as always and the breaks just went their way this time.
 
“Obviously, if the game goes over and the 49ers win it’s a different story,” Stoneback said.
 
The success of the MGM’s Super Bowl Sunday basically came from five players betting large money, including a $1 Million wager on the 49ers money-line (+120) from Houston’s Mattress Mack
 
An hour before kickoff, the MGM books had a regular casino VIP wager $550,000 on the 49ers +1.5, $500,000 on 49ers first-half (EVEN), and $550,000 on over 53.5.
 
So none of those results happened favorably, or at least one bet pushed. They bagged $2 million from just two guys and then had the game go under (53.5) to beat out all the public parlays. Best day since 2008? Wow. 
 
William Hill’s head bookmaker Nick Bogdanovich was in his seat since 5:00 a.m. PT trolling all jurisdictions of the biggest betting operation in the nation. He was beat up by 8:45 p.m. PT. 
 
“It’s the busiest day I’ve ever worked, “he said. 
 
The dude has been running books for my entire life. I look older than him, but his days at the Horseshoe I remember well. If he’s saying it’s his busiest day ever than that is an extreme nod to respect. Busy time in the business.
 
I offered a beer, but he said he just wanted to go home and get a hot shower.
 
“We did well in Nevada with lots of 49ers action, money-line play and the total over included with parlays, but we’re still getting in results from other parts of the country,” Bogdanovich said. 
 
Westgate Superbook VP Jay Kornegay said they did well to the game itself and futures, but started out poorly early with the props.
 
“Patrick Mahomes scoring the first TD (20/1) wasn’t good for us,” Kornegay said. “And Kyle Juszczyk scoring the first 49ers TD (15/1) seemed to be in everyone’s pocket. He only had one TD all season and every 49ers fan seemed to have bet it.”
 
There were similar tales of success all across Nevada books, especially up north where the sportsbooks in Reno were blasted with 49ers money and they bet Juszczyk up there as well. 
 
Marc Nelson at the Atlantis Reno said they held decently, but the first 49ers TD hurt them. The game itself they won with the 49ers losing, a popular bet up there in 49ers country.
 
What I take away from this game is that the number didn’t move much from Chiefs -1 or -1.5 while the SuperBook was -2 for most of the stretch run. The number certainly isn’t a key booking number, but the two-way action basically had the books saying “we’re good, we don’t need to move.”
 
And it was a crummy number which didn’t need much pushing to move. Until -2.5 either way, who cares about a big bet at -1.5. 

Caesars Palace also held very well to the game after all props were posted.
 
The total was actually fun to watch float around. It was my only excitement for two weeks. It started at 51.5, got up to 55, and then dropped to as low as 52.5 on Sunday. That’s six of the last seven totals at 50 or above in the Super Bowl staying 'under' the number.
 
I’m not a big chance freak guy with numbers, odd circumstances, or the month or the moon, but the under happening again seemed like a rerun. Something to be aware of if we see another high total in the Super Bowl, which will likely be the case if KC shows up again.
 
How about one more freaky number. Andy Reid just won his first Super Bowl which was the 222th win of his NFL career, and it happened on 02-02-2020. Deuces wild!
 
Last thing, what the hell happened in the fourth quarter? It was 21-0, Chiefs. That is insane. It makes me feel like I just watched a new movie from M. Knight Shyamalan or Quentin Tarrantino. The script flipped as I’ve never seen before. A 20-10 49ers lead just evaporated.

It ended up being very good theater. Congrats, Kansas City, after 50 years.

Roberts is a former Las Vegas sports book director that has been covering the sports betting industry for the last 15 years.

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