Archive for the ‘Gambling’ Category

Why did the (former) Jeopardy champion end his streak with a meager $1,399 wager?

June 4, 2019

Answer: Pure game theory … perfectly executed..


Well, it finally ended.

James Holzhauer– the 34-year-old professional sports gambler — was dethroned by librarian Emma Boettcher.


Boettcher was quick on the buzzer (and James seemed uncharacteristically late-triggered), she answered all of her questions correctly and she she had some luck — hitting both Daily Doubles in the double Jeopardy round.

Bottom line: she deserved to win.

A major conversation piece from the game was Holzhauer’s measly $1,399 wager in Final Jeopardy.

I can explain that…


Trax: Using casinos’ loyalty systems to ID gambling addicts …

August 20, 2013

Excerpted from the WSJ …

Casinos have developed detailed behavioral profiles of many of their customers, based in part on information gathered though loyalty-card programs that can track slot-machine play and other-gambling activity.

The casinos use this information to tailor marketing offerings, particularly to the small minority who make up the bulk of their revenue base.



It’s called predictive analytics, and casinos have been on the leading edge.

Here’s the rub …


Betcha he misses this free throw …

May 31, 2012

Punch line: I had a friend who would bet on anything … in a football game it would be who would win the toss, who would score first, whether the next play would gain more or less than 5 yards.

You get the picture.

Well, he must be salivating.

Cantor Fitzgerald — the NY brokerage outfit — is bringing technology and near real-time action to betting.

I guess derivatives weren’t risky enough for these wise guys …

* * * * *
Excerpted from the Washington Post

Cantor Fitzgerald, one of the world’s largest brokers of government bonds, is diversifying —  into sports-gambling.

Equipped with technology drawn from Wall Street and a trader’s appetite for risk, Cantor is charging into sports betting in Las Vegas .

With a $150 million investment, the New York-based bond brokerage has taken control of and retooled seven sports books.

Cantor has also produced wireless tablets so gamblers can bet anywhere in the casino or hotel. Eventually, it wants to start an online poker casino, too.

“The idea is that we can bring  technological innovation to the market.’’

Cantor’s bookmaking software, a modified version of what Wall Street traders use, has changed the way sports gamblers bet.

Cantor says its computer servers, driven by the kind of algorithm-rich software that fuels derivatives trading, spew out odds on events at the fastest rate ever.

Before Cantor ran the sports book, people could usually bet only once, before the game began, on the outcome.

Cantor’s technology allows gamblers to place bets during contests on dozens of situations just seconds before they unfold.

During a Los Angeles Lakers-Boston Celtics game, a betting opportunity pops up on the stations.

It offers a $100 payoff on a $220 wager that the Celtics’ Paul Pierce will sink the two foul shots he’s about to take.

Gamblers bet on Pierce by swiping a finger across the screen.

Pierce sinks both.

Cantor’s big bet is that Congress will allow sports wagering to spread across the country … online, of course..

Thanks to SMH for feeding the lead.

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Let’s play Obama Bingo during tonite’s State-of-the-Union Address …

January 24, 2012

Irish bookies are  laying odds on which clichés President Obama will drop first and say most often in tonite’s State of the Union address.

Why not turn it into a game …. like students do with boring profs.

Randomly post the most likely clichés to squares on 5 x 5 game cards.

First player to score a row, a column, a diagonal or the 4 corners with “he said it” marks wins the game.

Below are the official odds on what Obama will say first.

Note My “lock” prediction isn’t even on the list: “Let me be perfectly clear” … a couple of my other favorites are bolded.

Odds   Cliché

8/1     We have more work to do
10/1     Health care reform
10/1     As I stand here today
12/1     Fundamental belief
12/1     God bless America
12/1     Crossroads of history
12/1     Defining moment
12/1     Make Washington work
14/1     Common purpose
16/1     Pursuit of happiness
16/1     Building a better America
16/1     Reduce the deficit
18/1     War on terror
18/1     It won’t be easy
18/1     Hungry for change
18/1     My civil liberties
20/1     Honor for me
20/1     I have a dream
20/1     Willing to listen to each other
20/1     Yes, we can
20/1     Don’t get me wrong
25/1     Hard to believe
25/1     I’m fired up
25/1     Withdraw our troops
25/1     There are better days ahead
25/1     Do-nothing Congress
25/1    We’ll have to make hard choices
25/1     We can be one people
25/1     A new direction
33/1     For far too long
33/1     Safe from harm
33/1     Jobs to the jobless
33/1     Reshapes our economy
40/1     Deepest gratitude
40/1     Greatness of our nation
40/1     Possibilities of this nation
40/1     Florida primary
50/1     Believe in what this country can be
50/1     Unity is the great need of the hour
50/1     In the face of despair, you believe there can be hope
50/1     We can work together to keep our country safe
50/1     Abiding faith
66/1     Brighter day will come
66/1     Publish tax returns
66/1     Washington has a long way to go
80/1     Overcome the adversity
80/1     Bloated federal government
100/1     Diversity of my heritage
100/1     Yes, we might
250/1     Life is like a box of chocolates

Source: Washington Times

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I agree with Barney Frank … did I really say that?

April 20, 2011

Punch line: Rep. Barney Frank says the Administration is  ‘wasting time’ with online poker crackdown


The Obama administration is wasting time and resources by targeting online poker sites, according to Rep. Barney Frank (Mass.), the senior Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee.

“What an incredible waste of resources.”

Frank mocked the seizures as the administration “protecting the public from the scourge of inside straights,” and lamented that the Justice Department is more focused on prosecuting online poker sites than those responsible for the mortgage crisis and financial meltdown.

Go after the people responsible for empty houses, not full houses.”

The crackdown has disrupted the lives of the thousands of individuals that rely on online poker for part or all of their income.

That group includes not only professional gamblers but also programmers who create analytics and other tools as well as the backers who finance many of the full-time players.

“Seismic event”: Feds “call” poker sites … Tanning salons sigh relief

April 18, 2011

Punch line: After whacking tanning salons with higher taxes, the Obama administration has turned its guns on another culture-crippling endeavor: online poker.

Porous borders: no problem.

Online poker: must be stopped.

If it weren’t so funny, it would be sad.

* * * * *

According to the WSJ:

Eleven people, including the founders of three of the largest online poker companies doing business in the U.S., have been charged in the largest crackdown on Internet poker by U.S. authorities.

Those charged Friday include the online poker websites PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker.

The charges set up a long-awaited showdown between the sites, which claim millions of U.S. players and billions in revenue, and the federal government, which has long alleged that their operations are illegal.

Federal prosecutors have targeted the three largest online poker companies doing business in the U.S., charging their founders with money laundering and bank fraud and seizing five of the companies’ domain names.

This is seismic,” said James Kilsby, an editor for Gambling Compliance, a website which tracks regulatory issues. “It’s a game changer.”

* * * * *

The charges are likely to disrupt a fragile ecosystem that involves millions of players in the United States who play poker for money.

PokerScout, a website that tracks online poker, estimates that almost 2 million people played poker for money in the U.S. last year, representing $16 billion in wagers.