NASCAR Betting — Expect the Unexpected at Daytona 500

NASCAR Betting -- Expect the Unexpected at Daytona 500

The Daytona 500 has always been a unique race because it is run on a monster track with steep banks and a tight pack that lends itself to “contact.” It is a “restrictor plate” race, often the case on superspeedways, so as to keep speeds down to a level that might promote the optimum amount of safety. Drafting is a common practice, and as the careers of drivers evolve, there are some who are simply better using plates. Those who have demonstrated this ability and come in at a long price may just be candidates for an upset and handsome payout, in this battle that BetAnySports customers can see on Fox starting at about 1:30 PM ET from Daytona Beach, FL.

A lot of eyes will be on the drivers for the Joe Gibbs Racing team, and that is not only because this is a particularly strong bunch, but because there has not been a whole lot of success for this group at Daytona, where it has been 23 years without reaching the winner’s circle. Toyota, which provides the “equipment,” has never won this race.

Gibbs fields five cars in this event, and it is a star-studded cast. Denny Hamlin (+850 to win at BetAnySports) is one of them, and he managed to take the checkered flag in the Sprint Unlimited yesterday. Matt Kenseth, who also races for Gibbs, is starting on the front row alongside rookie Chase Elliott. Then there is Kyle Busch (+1000), the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup champ, who missed the festivities last year, and Carl Edwards, who is generally known as one of the most popular drivers on the circuit.

None of these guys won the race last year, though. That distinction went to Joey Logano, the one-time prodigy who won on a yellow flag over Kevin Harvick, and is priced at +975 in the NASCAR betting odds. There are a number of people who have captured this title more than once; Dale Earnhardt Jr., whose father died at Daytona in 2001, won in 2004 and 2014 (and is the +325 favorite here); Jimmy Johnson won in 2006 and 2013 (he’s +1050), and Matt Kenseth was the champion in 2009 and 2012. Michael Waltrip (150-1), whose team is no longer a full-time operation but is entered here, is also a two-time winner (2001 and 2003). Chase Elliott (+1600), who is taking over the car left behind by the retired Jeff Gordon for Hendrick Motorsports, won the pole, and he tries to carry on a tradition, as his father Bill was also a two-time champion.

One of the guys we always like to look out for is Jamie McMurray, who is completely comfortable in restrictor plate races and won at Daytona in 2010. He is one of those drivers who is hot and cold and always capable of a surprise. But would it be all that much of a surprise if he won? He goes off at +2850 at BetAnySports, which may be something of a value.

Of the former winners here, aside from Waltrip, the longest shot is Trevor Bayne, who won it in 2011 despite not even being part of the regular Sprint Cup circuit, and who raced subsequent to that with the Nationwide (now Xfinity) series. He has been back to the 500 four times and not finished better than 27th. He is priced at +8500 in the Daytona 500 betting odds.

Danica Patrick comes in at +4500 at BetAnySports, and she has been looking for a breakthrough in NASCAR. She probably had her best moment at this venue in 2013, when she won the pole position, led at one point, and finished eighth.

We might take our chances with McMurray.

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Gambling Regulators Are Actually Considering Slot Machines That You Play Like a Video Game

Gambling Regulators Are Actually Considering Slot Machines That You Play Like a Video Game

Today the Massachusetts Gaming Committee is meeting to discuss whether or not gambling machines made to look and play like real video games are a good idea for the state’s casinos. They’re not the only state considering allowing classic games and ones modeled after currently trendy phone applications to stand alongside traditional slots.

As the AP reported, Marcus Prater, executive director of the Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers, is worried that millennial casino-goers skip over the slot machines because they view them as outdated. “Skill-based” slot machines that mimic games like Angry Birds, pinball, Pac-Man, and Guitar Hero are intended to reel in that demographic.

He said, “This is something totally new. Players have never had the option, in any market in the world, to influence the outcome of the game.”

The only reason that the new roll-out isn’t on like crushing debt Donkey Kong, though, is that there are anti-gambling advocates who insist that games meant to look like kids’ games will blur the line between recreational fun and gambling, taking out an element of seriousness. Previous attempts to marry casual activities with gambling have ended poorly for other companies and regular video games already get enough pushback for these same reasons.

They’re trying to find new ways to get people hooked on gambling. It’s an incredibly predatory business for that reason,” explained Les Bernal, national director of the Massachusetts-based Stop Predatory Gambling.

Nevada and New Jersey have heard the concerns of those who believe gamblers will interpret Sonic’s “gotta go fast” as “gotta go broke.” There are regulations and laws already in place in those states, in spite of the fact that the machines haven’t hit casino floors yet. Pennsylvania, New York, and Maryland have all begun to consider these skill-based games, too, though no laws or regulations have been made.

As for Massachusetts, a 2011 law included provisions for this type of game, so all that is needed now is a set of regulations and for someone in a position of power to pull the lever and launch the ball.

This is a reprint from mediaite.com. to view the original, click here.

Why do states define gambling differently?

Why do states define gambling differently?

States vary wildly in how they define gambling.

“Each state has its unique constitutional structure, statutory structure and case law, thereby rendering different conclusions,” Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin wrote in a Feb. 4, 2016, letter to Governor Gina Raimondo.

According to two formal opinion letters that were recently made public in the ongoing New York litigation — one sent to DraftKings executive Tim Dent in 2013 and another sent to FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles in 2014 — there are four general categories of states.

“States fall in to four groups: states that ban contests where chance is a predominant or significant factor, states that ban contests where chance is a material factor, states that ban games with ‘any’ degree of chance and states that ban all cash games regardless of skill or chance,” lawyers wrote in the letter to FanDuel.

Court documents in New York indicate that just under half of the states fall into the “predominance” test category, the largest group by far.

“Most states use the predominance test when assessing the existence of the gambling element of chance,” the 2013 letter stated to DraftKings. “In other words, if the element of skill in a particular game predominates over chance, then the game is permitted.” With federal law noting that individual states have the “primary responsibility” to determine which activities constitute gambling within its borders, a diverse mash-up of laws has emerged through the decades. The result is that lobbyists for the fantasy industry probably won’t be able to use a one-size-fits-all approach in the years ahead. The lack of guidance from court cases makes the diverse landscape tough to navigate, too.

“No court has directly addressed whether fantasy sports contests are games of skill,” the 2014 letter stated to FanDuel.

This is a reprint from espn.go.com. to view the original, click here.

After court arguments, is New Jersey any closer to legalized sports gambling?

After court arguments, is New Jersey any closer to legalized sports gambling?

On Wednesday, the state of New Jersey argued its case for legalized sports gambling before the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia. The state has long sought to implement sports betting in order to prop up the sagging fortunes of its casinos and racetracks, only to be blocked twice by the same Third Circuit appeals court after challenges were raised by the NCAA, NFL, NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball.

Wednesday’s hearing was different than the previous two, however. Instead of the three-judge panels that heard the first two cases, Wednesday’s arguments were heard by all 12 of the Third Circuit’s active judges, an “en banc” hearing that is granted only in exceptional circumstances.

At the center of the issue is the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), a 1992 federal law that prohibits all but four states — Nevada, Oregon, Montana and Delaware — from authorizing sports gambling. The questions raised Wednesday sought to not only determine whether New Jersey was violating PASPA in its attempts to legalize sports gambling, but whether PASPA is even constitutional.

In its first attempt to legalize sports gambling in 2012 (short-handedly known as “Christie I,” after Gov. Chris Christie), New Jersey argued that PASPA violated the 10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution in that it compels the state to enforce a federal law not expressly written into the Constitution. The three-judge panel disagreed, saying New Jersey was free to repeal its bans on sports gambling if it so wanted.

And that’s what New Jersey did, repealing its sports gambling prohibitions, leaving oversight to the state’s casinos and racetracks and promising they wouldn’t be prosecuted for allowing sports gambling. Once again the sports leagues sued to stop New Jersey, and once again they were successful: In what has come to be known as “Christie II,” the Third Circuit appeals court ruled that New Jersey’s actions constituted a “de facto” authorization of sports gambling, in violation of PASPA.

It was thought that Wednesday’s hearing would be an attempt by the judges to reconcile those seemingly contradictory rulings, but the judges also seemed interested in asking the two sides about PASPA’s constitutionality.

As a result, we likely are looking at three possible outcomes when the court issues its ruling later this year, according to gaming-law attorney Christopher L. Soriano of Duane Morris LLP in New Jersey:

It’s always difficult to tell where a court may be headed, but it seems that the Court had more difficult questions for the state than for the leagues. That said, there seems to be three camps on the Court: those who believe PASPA is unconstitutional (and thus NJ gets regulated sports betting); those who believe PASPA is constitutional but NJ has complied with PASPA in its partial repeal (and thus NJ gets unregulated sports betting in casinos and racetracks) and those who believe PASPA is constitutional and that NJ’s partial repeal violates it (and thus no sports betting).

Most experts, such as sports and gaming lawyer Daniel Wallach, say New Jersey faces an uphill battle in this specific case, but that it also could be the beginning of the end of PASPA:

This is a reprint from washingtonpost.com. to view the original, click here.

Senate bill would legalize fantasy sports gambling in Arizona

Senate bill would legalize fantasy sports gambling in Arizona

A bill that won approval in an Arizona Senate committee would legalize online fantasy sports gambling in the state.

An amendment to Senate Bill 1515 would end a prohibition in the state’s gambling law which affects online fantasy sports leagues.

State law outlaws any prize being paid on any game of either skill or chance. Fantasy sports backers say their games require skill because players choose players to compete.

The Arizona Attorney General sent a letter to one of the nation’s major fantasy sports websites in November demanding that they disclose safeguards in place to ensure Arizonans are not being allowed to play on the site.

“It obviously caused us some concern,” Brnovich told the Boston Globe.

In 2014, other states also had legalities against fantasy sports gambling sites: Iowa, Nevada, Louisiana and Washington.

Sen. Adam Driggs’ bill specifically allows fantasy sports leagues. The Judiciary Committee he chairs advanced the bill on a 5-2 vote Thursday.

This is a reprint from ktar.com. to view the original, click here.

Your Early Guide To March Madness Betting

 

bettingPart of the allure in college basketball is how quickly things can change. Last year, Kentucky was a seemingly unbeatable juggernaut surrounded by legitimate threats from all over the country. It felt like there were superstars and future NBA greats in the making. This year’s sort of different.

Your Early Guide To March Madness BettingI say “sort of” because we’ll get caught up in the fury of March Madness betting once again, and talent is always relative at the college level. Kansas, Oklahoma, Michigan State, UNC and Villanova have all shared top honors in the AP Top 25 poll this year. And all five of them are still rolling around in the top end of those rankings. Does this mean that college basketball has achieved the zenith of parity?

Nope. The teams in college basketball this season simply aren’t as good as they have been in recent years. By Week 17 last season, there were eight elite teams that had lost three games or fewer. There are zero such teams this year.

All that does is level out the playing field and make longshots much more tempting. The best teams in the country are all beatable by lesser-ranked schools. But that doesn’t mean you should swing for the fences just because it’s a bit of a down year.

The average ranking of a championship team in the postseason AP Top-25 poll over the last decade has been 4.3. That includes two number ones (Kentucky ’12, Florida ’06) and the 18th ranked UConn Huskies in 2014. The second lowest ranked team to win a championship is the 2011 UConn Huskies.

So as much as I want to try and create this frenzy by talking about some of the low hanging teams in the country, it’s hard to really stray that far away from the legitimate contenders. Listen, in the moment you can go bananas when a team like Florida International or Wichita State goes completely bonkers. That’s what the March Madness betting spreads are for.

The futures and long-term prop bets are an altogether different matter.

THE LONGSHOTS

Long odds can make for great payout…but not-so-great bets.

#25 California Bears (+3300 to win NCAAB Championship)

The Bears have a legitimate chance at creeping up the rankings by the end of the year, but it is worth noting that their opening odds to win the national title have gone from +2500 +3300. So why bother taking a look?

The Bears have two top-10 prospects in the upcoming draft, and both are absolutely ripping at this level. Jaylen Brown is an unstoppable swingman who can penetrate to the basket seemingly at will, while power-forward Ivan Rabb is a fairly dominant big who desperately needs to put on more size.

I like the pair of them, and at +3300 it’s not a bad flier play if you have some spare change kicking around. It’s not a great one either, but that’s why we call them longshots.

#19 Baylor Bears (+10000 to win NCAAB Championship)

People always fall in love with Baylor’s length, and this year they’re just as tempting. They’re one of the best rebounding teams in the league, but that’s a byproduct of their poor perimeter shooting. Don’t fall in to this trap. Odds like this never pay out.

#18 Arizona Wildcats (+2200 to win NCAAB Championship)

In a crazy year like 2015-16, a team like Arizona is going to generate some buzz. I get it. They’re a fantastic scoring team as usual. In the last five seasons, they’ve gone to the Sweet Sixteen or the Elite Eight. But this year, they just don’t feel like one of the best teams in the country. They’d need to string together a remarkable run of wins and I just don’t see it in them.

#13 Utah Utes (+6600 to win NCAAB Championship)

As much as I’m enamored by center Jakob Poetl, Utah leaves too much to be desired everywhere else. They score a decent amount of points, but their perimeter defense is soft. A recent 8-2 SU and 7-3 ATS streak has garnered the attention of spread bettors everywhere. Keep leaning on them on a game-by-game basis, even in the tournament. Just don’t buy in when it comes to the futures market.

THE TOP STAY-AWAY TEAMS LONG TERM

These teams will make better spread munching bets than they will long term investments

#22 Kentucky Wildcats (+900 to win NCAAB Championship)

The Wildcats are amongst the top end bets to make in the futures market, and I’m not sure why outside of their public appeal. Jamal Murray is a fantastic guard who has cranked up the heat lately, scoring 26.4 points during a 6-2 SU and 5-3 ATS run, but he’s very much alone on this team.

The Wildcats are not a super deep squad, and though John Calipari is one of the finest recruiters in the land, there wasn’t a whole lot of incoming freshman talent to grab this past year. When you’re a high turnover program like Kentucky, that kind of stuff will show. I’d shy away from the Wildcats in any form of March Madness betting, while preferring the SEC rival South Carolina as a spread busting dynamo in earlier rounds. The Gamecocks are a blissful 18-8 ATS this year.

#12 Indiana Hoosiers (+3300 to win NCAAB Championship)

I love that this team can put up points, but I despise the way they play defense. I hate it when teams allow more than 41-percent in allowed field goal percentage, and Indiana gives up 44.2-percent from the field. Their -19.0 point stinker against the Spartans also stands out. Beating up Big Ten opponents is one thing. Taking on the best in the country isn’t going to make things easier for a defensively inept, undersized squad.

#9 Oregon Ducks (+3300 to win NCAAB Championship)

Like all teams in this category, Oregon’s scoring is exciting, but their defense and inability to rebound the ball effectively pump the brakes on the Ducks hype train.

#8 UNC Tar Heels (+800 to win NCAAB Championship)

I can absolutely see why a lot of people like UNC, but I can’t see why people would love them. Their odds to win the title are inflated by their public backing. There’s a huge faction of people who simply want the Tar Heels to do well. It might be nostalgic. It also might be because they’ve never escaped the first weekend of the tournament for the past five years. There’s really no reason to believe that this veteran group is capable of ending that streak.

TOP RANKED TEAMS BUILT FOR THE REGULAR SEASON

I like all three, but only in the context of the 17-week season.

#6 Oklahoma Sooners (+1200)

Do you believe in Buddy Hield that much? I mean, I love watching him play. He’s going to be one of the most exciting players in the tournament. But Oklahoma has flirted with greatness like this before with Blake Griffin. There’s just not enough supporting talent around Hield to push Oklahoma past the second weekend of March Madness betting. He’s turnover prone simply by virtue of how much he touches the ball. I hate telling people to bet against him, and for the most part you don’t. But you can freely bet against Oklahoma as a team because they rely on their star way too much.

#4 Virginia Cavaliers (+1400)

#3 Villanova Wildcats (+1400)

Both of these teams are built for the regular season and I don’t mean that in a bad way, but it’s hard to envision any of them really pushing the distance. All of them rely on perimeter shooting and lack size to an important degree. Poor rebounding teams rarely make for worthy takes in the futures market when it comes to March Madness betting. A lot of people are going to take these guys as “under the radar” plays. Don’t bother. They have “letdown” stamped across their foreheads.

MY FAVOURITE BETS TO WIN IT ALL

The top four takes in my estimation and I can’t believe that Xavier is one of them.

#17 Duke Blue Devils (+2000 to win NCAAB Championship)

I know, I know. Everybody hates Duke. Fuck these guys, right? Well, I’m always going to look at a team that can make me money and these odds on Duke are as good as they’re ever going to get.

Listen, aside from being the defending champs, Duke has everything you’d want in a long term Mach Madness betting pick. Grayson Allen is a superb player who knows how to win. Marshall Plumlee is one of the better, technical big men in the country. And Brandon Ingram might end up being one of the most outstanding performers in the tournament.

So hate on Duke all you want. I’m throwing a chip at their +2000 odds without even thinking.

#5 Xavier Musketeers (+1200)

Betting on Xavier seems like sheer lunacy. But isn’t that why they call it “March Madness”? Xavier lost a bit of momentum after beating up Villanova because they followed that performance up with a thumping at the hands of Seton Hall. Still, there’s a lot to like here.

Xavier is long, mean and agile. They can pound the boards with excessive force because they have three capable bigs in the rotation, and they’re a balanced team. They get scoring from everywhere – and lots of it since they average 80.4 points per game. There’s something about them that reminds me of the 2013 Louisville Cardinal.

The big question is whether or not they can really hold on against some of the big name teams. But if you’re looking at this season thematically, it’s been weird, and nothing would be stranger than Xavier going the distance.

#2 Michigan State Spartans (+600)

#1 Kansas Jayhawks (+500)

Take your pick between the two top teams. Hell, you can even use both of them as heavy hedge plays. Bill Self and Tom Izzo are two of the greatest college basketball coaches to ever grace the sport, and their teams are the best overall from almost every consensus ranking (including the Pomeroy Ratings). The Jayhawks grade out slightly higher, but Michigan State has faced a much tougher schedule. And considering the pedigree of both of these schools, they make terrific takes in the futures market.

Well, unless you prefer chasing dogs like the rest of us March Madness betting maniacs.

There will be more to come as we – ahem – march closer to the big dance.

This is a reprint from calvinayre.com. to view the original, click here.

Sports betting advocates play outside game

Sports betting advocates play outside game

Advocates of sports betting are playing the outside game, hoping that pressure from the states will push Washington toward legalization.

Rather than seeking action on Capitol Hill, proponents of sports betting are hoping that growing acceptance of betting in the states — driven in part by the popularity of daily fantasy sports games — will help overturn a 1992 federal ban on most forms of sports gambling.

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The American Gaming Association (AGA) is spearheading the effort and working to gain partners in the public and private sector. “We’re taking a different approach,” Geoff Freeman, the chief executive of the AGA, told The Hill. “We’re creating an environment where policymakers are inclined to ask the questions that we would like to see them ask about the issue.”

In particular, the AGA is raising questions about the flow of money in the illegal sports betting market, the lack of consumer protections and how states and local governments could benefit if that activity were regulated.

Americans spent $149 billion on illegal sports bets nationwide in 2015, the AGA estimates. About 97 percent of the $4.2 billion wagered on this year’s Super Bowl, the group says, was done illegally.

Congress passed a law banning sports betting in 1992 known as the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). While states were given a one-year window to legalize some sports betting, only Nevada, Delaware, Montana and Oregon chose to do so.

Proponents are now claiming that technology and other aspects of betting have changed the game, making the law antiquated.

Freeman and others at the AGA are having meetings with governors, attorneys general and state-level lawmakers and law enforcement officials in hopes of creating grassroots pressure to overturn the 1992 statute.

“The general public would agree, the federal government can’t seem to get anything done,” said J.B. Van Hollen, the former attorney general of Wisconsin who is working with the AGA on the issue through his consulting firm, Van Hollen Consulting. “States are stepping up more and more to fill the void. [Federal law] prohibits states that don’t have gaming to do any regulation of it.”

“The more we’ve learned” about illicit sports gaming, he says, “the more we’ve realized that we need to do something about it.”

But the push for sports betting has been overshadowed to an extent by the controversy over daily fantasy sports sites.

While roughly two-dozen states have shown some sort of legislative movement on daily fantasy sports — an industry that argues it is a form of entertainment, rather than gambling — only four have taken up sports betting in recent years.

We are “taking on an issue that isn’t front and center,” Freeman says. “The first step is placing it there, and the second step is winning. It’s a bigger lift, but it gives us the opportunity to be very creative.”

At the moment, all eyes in the gambling industry are on New Jersey, where a panel of federal judges on Wednesday will hear arguments to allow the legalization of sports betting in the state.

The State of New Jersey is fighting in the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals to legalize wagers at casinos and racetracks there, hoping to give a boost to the struggling horse racing industry and casino-centric Atlantic City.

The NCAA and four sports leagues — the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL — are challenging the state, saying that legalization would damage the integrity of their brands and violate federal law.

On Wednesday, 12 judges will listen to arguments from both sides; at least seven must side with the state of New Jersey in order for the state’s challenge to be successful. It could be months before a decision is released.

“There’s an awareness among folks that whatever the purpose of the current law, it’s not really working today,” said Joseph Asher, the CEO of William Hill US, Nevada’s largest sports book operator.

He said it might take more than just lobbying pressure to move Capitol Hill toward action.

“People are generally realistic; there are a lot of issues going on that are all seeking the attention of Congress,” he told The Hill. “Perhaps it takes a court ruling, either in the 3rd Circuit or elsewhere, that may create the impetus to move the issue forward.”

In the meantime, the Pennsylvania legislature — another state covered by the 3rd Circuit — is moving to pass a symbolic resolution that condemns the 1992 law.

“Even amid strong Federal laws banning sports betting in the United States, reports highlight that illegal sports betting is widespread and is considered the number one form of gambling among American residents,” the resolution reads.

Pennsylvania’s House Gaming Oversight Committee approved the measure last week, and it is now heading to the House floor.

Even sports leagues, which are deeply involved in the New Jersey lawsuit and have a history of opposing sports betting, appear to be coming around.

While the NFL still contains strong language in its league policy that declares it “opposes all forms of illegal gambling, as well as legal betting on NFL games or other professional, college or Olympic sports,” there have been some mixed signals. Its teams, for example, play games in London, where the practice of sports betting is legal.

On the other end of the spectrum, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has been speaking out in favor of legalization of both daily fantasy and traditional sports betting.

“One of the reasons I’ve been pushing to legalize sports betting is not because that I’m necessarily an advocate of sports betting, it’s because all the research shows that it’s a multihundred-billion dollar business just in the United States right now,” Silver said in a FiveThirtyEight podcast last year. “In terms of the integrity of the sports leagues, it’s only bad news for us when it continues to remain underground.”

Many leagues have also signed deals with daily fantasy companies, data providers and oddsmakers, according to an ESPN report.

Freeman is also busy behind the scenes trying to gather a broad coalition of groups who could support or eventually benefit from the legalization of sports betting — including law enforcement, broadcasters, lotteries, convenience stores and even the Humane Society of the United States, which remains concerned about bets on animal fighting.

The National Association of Broadcasters and the National Association of Convenience Stores each told The Hill that they were not working on the sports betting issue, however.

Freedman says he wants to “streamline how Washington looks at the issue.”

“We’ve all seen these debates where Washington is inclined to do something, but because the interested parties can’t get on the same page, it gives Congress a way out,” he said. “We’re going to work to avoid that.”

This is a reprint from thehill.com. to view the original, click here.