Everyone knows the house always wins in Las Vegas. Oddsmakers just had the wrong house. The Vegas Golden Knights have dominated opponents with a league-best 19-2-2 home record. In a city where fans can show their enthusiasm in the form of a wager before heading to T-Mobile Arena, the dominance has an added dimension. "We've been getting our butts kicked," South Point oddsmaker Jimmy Vaccaro said. "We should rename it 'free date night.' A guy invites a girl out to dinner and stops at the sportsbook on the way to the game. What she doesn't realize is we are paying for everything." A $100 wager on every Knights home game in 2017-18 to date would have net a bettor $1,395. That is an extraordinarily profitable return. And, though hockey losses typically amount to little more than a rounding error for a casino's bottom line, the phenomenon that has been the first season for the first big-league team based in the only U.S. city where you can make a legal wager has created a perfect storm effect for the books. "Hockey is usually a very poorly bet sport," William Hill director of trading Nick Bogdanovich said. "But all of a sudden we have big decisions and we keep losing them. Players just keep rolling over their winnings." Local properties are booking between 10 and 15 times the handle on Golden Knights home games than for any other NHL team. And that number increases during the game, as fans can bet from their seats on mobile devices. In total, the handle represents the equivalent of an average NFL game, which is in the six-figure neighborhood for each sportsbook.
Golden Knights' home dominance equals red ink for sportsbooks
ESPN | Jan 25