Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Monday, January 30, 2012 at 10:28 AM
Nothing happens by accident in the football betting world and that is why the most respected and powerful line-maker in Las Vegas grabbed our immediate attention when he convinced several of his clients to go against the grain and reduce the betting line on Sunday's Super Bowl from the New England Patriots -3 to -2 ½.
This gentleman, a veteran of decades in the world of sports betting, said he did it because, "it is the right number". He also said he wanted to position his clients to offset the heavy early betting on the underdog New York Giants at the opening number of +3 ½. Books in Las Vegas are also over-loaded with a substantial number of money-line bets on New York, some at +120 and some at +130.
"The 2 ½ is going to bring them all in-guys who love the Patriots wanting to lay the 2 ½ and those who took the Giants plus 3 ½ at the open going for the middle," he said, adding, "all of us have a little larceny in us and I'm giving bettors a chance to steal something."
That statement is rather chilling, because this man gives nothing away and his clients always seem to make money. His credibility as a numbers genius is unquestioned.
My introduction to this man came at a Super Bowl party in Las Vegas in 1995, when he was still a bookmaker. I and several bookmakers, line-makers and gamblers were all seated at the same table at one of the casinos and one bookmaker kept bemoaning the fact he was loaded with "over" money on the San Francisco 49ers-San Diego Chargers game-and he wouldn't stop talking about it.
Finally, my friend, now a line-maker, asked the guy how much money he had on the total and how much did he want to unload. The moaning and groaning bookmaker said he needed to lay off $600,000 to be able to relax.
My new-found friend never flinched and said, "I'll take it all," and went back to eating his steak.
The San Francisco 49ers were 18 ½-point favorites over the rag-tag San Diego Chargers, with a total of 53 ½ in that Super Bowl. It was 28-10 at the half and when the game was over the 49ers won 49-26 and with the 75 points my friend made arrangements to collect the $600,000.
It was the beginning of a long friendship and to this day we exchange information.
This is a serious man and when he says -2 ½, one must pay attention. I'm listening.
For the record the betting line remains New England -3 at most books, with a total of 55. If you are a money line bettor and like the Patriots you will have to lay -140, or $140 to win $100. The Giants are +120 which means you get $120 for each $100 wager.
All Eyes On Patriots TE Gronkowski
I do a little work each day on Sunday's Super Bowl and I will not make a final decision on either the side or the total until I know more about the availability of superstar tight end Rob Gronkowski who has not practiced because of a very painful high ankle sprain suffered in New England's win over Baltimore in the American Football Conference championship game.
While New England quarterback Tom Brady gets most of the credit for the Patriots' 15-3 record this season my figures say he must share equal billing with Gronkowski who in just two seasons is on his way to being the greatest tight end in NFL history-and that is said with the greatest of respect to Shannon Sharpe, John Mackey, Mike Ditka, Kellen Winslow and Ozzie Newsome.
Gronkowski, who played his football at Arizona, finished his rookie season with 10 touchdown passes, a figure only exceeded by Ditka who had 12 in his first NFL season. His value is put into even better perspective when you realize he is just one of four Patriots to ever catch 10 touchdowns in a single season and the other three-Randy Moss (3 times), Stanley Morgan(twice) and Jim Colclough (once)-were all veterans.
Thus far this season, Gronkowski has caught 90 passes for 1,327 yards, with 17 touchdowns. His closest competitor at the tight end position was Jimmy Graham with eight touchdowns.
He is by far the most dangerous game-breaker wearing a Patriot uniform and his absence from the game would make a tremendous difference in how the New England offense functions. Brady's success with his passing game is built around three receivers, Gronkowski, Wes Welker (122 catches for 1,569 yards and nine touchdowns and Aaron Hernandez (79 receptions for 910 yards and seven touchdowns.
If the ankle injury keeps Gronkowski out of the game-and he says it won't even though he is still walking around in a boot-the playing field becomes a much narrower one for the New York Giants to defend.
I have had an amazing life-time run in Super Bowls but none as successful as those of the last 11 years, where I have gone 19-3 on sides and totals (86.4%) including 9-2 in sides (81.8%) and totals 10-1 (90.9%. I guarantee you there are not a handful of people in the world who have done anything close to this and I intend to do it all over again Sunday, releasing a 200-unit winner on the Super Bowl, a 25-unit play on the total and a 25-unit bet on a side/total parlay.
Before I give you all the details, take a look of my plays for the last 11 years. A Super Bowl Record That Will Knock Your Socks Off For Last 11 Games
KELSO STURGEON SUPER BOWL RECORD
19-3 Sides & totals (86.4%)
9-2 Side (81.8%) Totals 10-1 (90.9%)
2011 Super Bowl (1-1)
Green Bay Packers (-2½) 31, Pittsburgh Steelers 25 (W)
Under 45 (L)
2010 Super Bowl (2-0)
New Orleans Saints (+5) 31, Indianapolis Colts 17 (W)
Under 57 (W)
2009 Super Bowl (2-0)
Arizona Cardinals (+7) 23, Pittsburgh Steelers 27 (W)
Over 46 (W)
2008 Super Bowl (2-0)
New York Giants (+12) 17, New England Patriots 14 (W)
Under 55 (W)
2007 Super Bowl (1-1)
Chicago Bears (+7) 17, Indianapolis Colts 29 (L)
Under 47½ Points (W)
2006 Super Bowl (1-1)
Seattle Seahawks (+4) 10, Pittsburgh Steelers 21 (L)
Under 46 ½ Points (W)
2005 Super Bowl (2-0)
Philadelphia Eagles (+7) 21, New England Patriots 24 (W)
Under 47 Points (W)
2004 Super Bowl (2-0)
Carolina Panthers (+7) 29, New England Patriots 32 (W)
Over 37 Points (W)
2003 Super Bowl (2-0)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+3 ½) 48, Oakland 21 (W)
Over 44 Points (W)
2002 Super Bowl (2-0)
New England Patriots (+14) 20, St. Louis Rams 17 (W)
Under 53 Points (W)
2001 Super Bowl (2-0)
Baltimore Ravens (-3) 34, New York Giants 7 (W)
Over 33 (W)
I am coming into the Super Bowl off a perfect 4-0 day in the conference championship games, releasing both winners and both winning today, with my biggest play of the day a 50-unit bet on the underdog New York Giants (+2) in their 20-17 win over the San Francisco 49ers. In other words the pump is primed. My Super Bowl Package is an outstanding one and includes:
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50-Unit PAC12 Game Of The Month
50-Unit NBA Game Of The Week
100-Unit College Blowout Game Of The Year
Super Bowl Sunday
200 Units On The Winning Side
25 Units On The Winning Total
25 Units On The Side/Total Parlay
At Least 5 Proposition Bets
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My Record Speaks For Itself And The Winning Will Continue