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Sports Betting In Las Vegas: Carolina Panthers Favored In Super Bowl 50


Grant Halverson/Stringer / Getty Images

Cam Newton celebrates after a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals, on Sunday in Charlotte, N.C.

Retailers look forward to Christmas as the rush to buy gifts is the time of the year their books finally go in the black.

For sports books in Las Vegas, they see the Super Bowl the same way.

But, will Super Bowl 50 between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers set any betting records?

Or, will it be a down year for the sports books without the Pittsburgh Steelers, New England Patriots or Green Bay Packers in the Big Game.

Art Manteris, the vice president of sports book operation at Station Casinos, told KNPR's State of Nevada that he would be disappointed if a betting record was not set in this Super Bowl.

"I think there are the ingredients necessary for a very good year, handle wise," he said.

Manteris said the number of bets made so far has been "brisk." He said the Carolina Panthers have impressed a lot of bettors and many people are betting on them, which is why the point spread has been changing.

The betting line is designed to be an equalizer. So, if the betting is not equal between the two teams the line will change to bring in more money for a team not getting action, Manteris explained.

He said at Station Casinos the Panthers are 5 and half point favorites. 

Mitch Moss hosts a sports talk show for ESPN Radio in Las Vegas. Moss said he expects a very good game between two tough teams.

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"You have this kind of steam rolling team coming in against, not only against Peyton Manning but what they did to Tom Brady last week on defense," Moss said, "The most hits on an opposing quarterback in the past decade and certainly the most hits Tom Brady has ever taken in a game and they way they played. Imagine it in your head if they could repeat that performance against a mobile quarterback like Cam Newton. There was a reason why the AFC title game on Sunday was the highest rated AFC Title game in 29 years."

As for where he'll put his money, Moss said if the point spread moved to 6 points, he would take the Broncos and the points.  

As far as the over-under, which is betting on the total number of points scored, Station Casinos has it set at 45 and half. 

Manteris said the Panthers are a hot team that is scoring a lot of points, but the Broncos are a strong defensive team, which means the total score will be kept to the mid-40s. 

Nevada sports books won $3.2 million off $115.9 million wagered on last year's Super Bowl, according to numbers compiled by the Nevada Gaming Commission.

Super Bowl 49 between the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks resulted in a sports book profit for the 24th time in the last 26 Super Bowls.

By the way, the Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks  28-24, with Malcolm Butler's last-minute interception on the goal line sealing the victory.

So, while thousands of visitors to Las Vegas over 

Super Bowl weekend will bet legally on the big game, the American Gaming Association estimates Americans will bet $4.2 billion on Super Bowl 50.

Nearly 97 percent of those bets, or $4.1 billion, will be wagered illegally.



"Just like football, sports betting has never been more popular than it is today," said Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association. "The casino industry is leading the conversation around a new approach to sports betting that enhances consumer protections, strengthens the integrity of games and recognizes fans' desire for greater engagement with sports."

Overall, AGA's estimate found that Americans wagered $149 billion on sports last year, up from $145 billion in 2014.

Late last year, the AGA issued a set of recommendations to deal with the massive illegal sports gambling market, in an attempt to build a coalition that would develop an alternative to the current sports betting law in the United States.

Peyton Manning and Tom Brady speak after the AFC Championship game in Denver on Sunday. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images 



Mitch Moss, host, ESPN Radio Las Vegas, and Art Manteris, vice president of sports book operations, Station Casinos

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KNPR's State of Nevada
KNPR's State of Nevada
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