Sports bettors’ gains are sportsbooks’ losses. And on Sunday, sportsbooks suffered some of their worst losses, period.
Nevada’s sportsbooks lost between $7 million to $10 million on NFL Week 9 games, as estimated by the state’s industry sources and reported by ESPN.
A whopping 88 percent of the sports-betting money wagered at William Hill’s sportsbooks in Nevada and New Jersey was on the Kansas City Chiefs, who more than covered their eight-point spread by destroying the Cleveland Browns, 37-21. It didn’t help that other bettors went big on the Minnesota Vikings and Pittsburgh Steelers — both of which won big as well. But the bulk of players rocking with the Chiefs had sportsbooks feeling the blues.
"We were pretty much done at that point," Jay Rood, MGM vice president of race and sports, told ESPN about the Chiefs’ domination of the Browns and how the public doubled down on it. "Disaster."
Just how bad was it? Rood said it ranks within his 10 most-costly Sundays and that’s saying something, considering he’s a 25-year vet of the industry.
Other industry bookmakers felt the full effects of Week 9’s bloody Sunday for sportsbooks as well.
"Bad. Really bad," Jeff Davis, Caesars head of risk operations, told ESPN. "We won one key decision today."
Added Station Casino sportsbook director Jason McCormick: "I don't know that there was a best game [for the book]. Maybe the Dolphins, which had the least handle of the day. Worst Sunday of the season."
Bookmakers might not want to hear this, but the Chiefs could possibly make Week 10 miserable for them as well. That’s because the Chiefs (8-1), winners of five straight games, will be hosting the hapless Arizona Cardinals (2-6). That could spell another scenario where a majority of bettors wager their money on the Chiefs and the team once again responds with a resounding victory.
So, don’t be surprised if it gets uglier this coming Sunday.