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Posted by on Oct 17, 2020 in Blog, Essays | 0 comments

2020 NFL: Week #6

 

 

I enjoyed a nice win last week, going 6-2, which gives me both a winning record and a profit for the season.  I’m hopeful the “learning curve” on this most unusual season is over and we’ll be able to take advantage of situations with more predictable outcomes after a losing month of September.

Here’s my weekly video discussion in this week’s games.  The video runs for about 30 minutes.

 

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2020 NFL WAGERING RECORD

Wins — Losses — Pushes     29 — 26 — 2

Starting Bankroll:     $10,000.

Current Bankroll:     $10,910.

Best Bets:     3 — 2 — 0 (+ $400.)

Last Week’s Results:     + $1,575.

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NOTE:  See video presentation which discusses every game this week and all ten bets I made.

CLICK HERE

 

THIS WEEK’S WAGERS (10 BETS):

 

CHI / CAR OVER 44.5 …. Risking $220 to win $200

1H — CHI +.5 vs. CAR …. Risking $230 to win $200

1H — CHI / CAR OVER 21.5 …. Risking $230 to win $200

1H — NYJ / MIA OVER 23.5 …. Risking $220 to win $200

NYJ / MIA OVER 47 …. Risking $220 to win $200

1H — WAS / NYG OVER 22 …. Risking $235 to win $200

WAS / NYG OVER 43 …. Risking $550 to win $500 [BEST BET]

MIN MONEYLINE vs. ATL …. Risking $390 to win $200

CLE +3.5 vs. PIT …. Risking $345 to win $300

1H — DAL +.5 vs. ARZ …..Risking $350 to win $300

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Posted by on Oct 16, 2020 in Blog, Essays, Music and Concert Reviews, Personal, Video 1 | 0 comments

“Summer’s End” by John Prine (My Cover)

 

 

Today, I’m doing something completely different.

I recorded this short 5-minute song, this morning. It seems most fitting right now and speaks to our time.

“Summer’s End” by the late John Prine.

Since his passing, I’ve become even more of a fan of John Prine and his music. Released in 2018 on “The Tree of Forgiveness” album, “Summer’s End” was a wonderfully moving song written about the opioid addiction crisis. But John Prine’s comforting message of loss and hope could apply to any and all of us in our own times of confusion and conflict. I’m posting my first cover here on YouTube, with special thanks to David Huckfelt & Over The Rhine (Etown Radio) for being my “backing band.” I hope you enjoy it as much as I take away sharing it with you.

“Summer’s end came faster than we wanted….”

That says it all, really. A more brilliant nor more poignant lyric has not been written.

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Posted by on Oct 12, 2020 in Blog, Essays | 0 comments

What’s the Future of Casino Games and Gambling? [Podcast]

 

 

AN INTELLIGENT CONVERSATION (PODCAST)

EPISODE 5

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Casinos and gambling games were changing before the global pandemic known as COVID. Now, the entire gambling sector is forced to hit the reset button. Will casino-resorts come back like before? What about the thousands of casino workers, including dealers — should they look for other jobs and work on developing alternative skills? What games will gamblers be playing 5, 10, and 20 years from now? Those are just a few of the questions addressed and answered in this in-depth (1-hour, 45-min.) discussion on all aspects of casino and gambling culture.

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0:04 – Intro
2:33 – Should casino employees be looking for new jobs?
10:53 – Locals casinos vs tourist casinos, who will fare better?
15:07 – Will Las Vegas ever truly recover from COVID?
26:48 – Does blackjack have a future?
36:04 – What is the future of craps?
40:37 – Is the “new” Las Vegas sustainable?
47:15 – The future of roulette and digitized table games
52:32 – Balancing experienced casino people vs well-educated bean counters
58:10 – Baccarat and “carnival” table games
1:07:09 – Slot machines and video poker.(Note: The correct title of the book mentioned is “What Stays in Vegas” written by Adam Tanner) 1:11:40 – The future of poker, both live and online
1:18:25 – Horse racing and sports betting
1:33:10 – What does the next generation of gamblers want
1:41:36 – Final thoughts
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Matt Lessinger and Nolan Dalla are the participants in this latest unscripted episode of “An Intelligent Conversation.”
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Recorded 10 October 2020

 

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Posted by on Oct 10, 2020 in Blog, Essays | 1 comment

2020 NFL: Week #5 Picks

 

I had a small win last week, going 6-4-1, but the Arizona Cardinals’ upset loss at Carolina was a bankroll killer.  That game represented a $1,100 swing.  Looking back, those are the bets you have to cash, or it’s tough to have a winning week.

Here’s my weekly video discussion in this week’s games.  The video runs about 35 minutes.  FF to the 6-min mark if you want analysis on each game:

 

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2020 NFL WAGERING RECORD

Wins — Losses — Pushes          23 — 24 — 2

Starting Bankroll:   10,000

Current Bankroll:   9,335.

Best Bets:  2 — 2 — 0 (-$400.)

Last Week’s Results:          + $270.

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GAMES I DID NOT BET:

CAR at ATL -1.5 [O/U: 54]:  I wanted to play CAR +3.5 but missed the send-out number and by the time I had money in hand, the line dropped to +1 to +1.5.  That’s like jumping on a missed flight.  Some advice:  Don’t try to board after the plane left the gate.  As far as the total at 54, that looks about right.  It’s tempting to play this total OVER given the propensity of ATL games to soar over most numbers, especially with that horrid defense surrendering avg. of 35 points-per-game.  However, I’m passing on this one.  No bets.

LV at KC -11 [O/U: 55.5]:  It’s KC -11 or nothing for me here, as LV is outmatched in just about every area.  I was repulsed by what I saw from Raiders last week and can easily see a slide downward as the season wears on.  That’s New Orleans upset by Las Vegas in the opener was a mirage.  This is a subpar team.  Surprisingly, KC has gone UNDER the total in three straight games despite its reputation for points — any other year I’d bet the UNDER, but not this season given how the scoring numbers are way up.  Raiders split their first four games, which all went OVER the total.  LV is just is 9-15 ATS in its last 24 games as a road underdog.  Short week for the Chiefs, after beating New England on MNF.  No bets.

DEN at NWE -10 [O/U: 48.5]:  I have no interest in this game.  QB Stidham reportedly is getting his first NFL start.  Pass.

LAR -7 at WAS {O/U: 45.5]:  Rams -7 looks too easy, but I’d be careful about laying that number here.  LAR sleepwalked to an easy win last week and haven’t been tested much (wins versus three soft opponents, plus BUF–which they lost).  I’m also concerned about LAR travel here with their third game in five weeks in the East time zone.  WAS is a mess with QB change this week and it’s hard to make a case for betting them, but there’s some chance LAR don’t take this opponent as seriously as other games, which ends up being closer than the spread indicates.  Also, WAS has been outscored 75-24 in the first half this season, which shows poor game preparation.  No wagers.

JAX at HOU -5.5 [O/U: 55.5]:  HOU is laying -5.5, yet they’re winless at 0-4 and fired their polarizing head coach midweek.  This is a very strange number that would normally make me lean to JAX.  But the Jags have steadily deteriorated in performance the last three weeks so I can’t back them either, as tempting as the points do appear.  Hard to believe this stat, but it’s true:  Texans don’t have a takeaway yet, are minus-5 in turnovers.  No bets.

BUF -1 at TEN [O/U: 49]:  I have no interest in this game, but lean do lean to TEN based on the second straight week of travel for Bills, plus Titans being more rested.  TEN, despite being 3-0, in my view has underperformed and due for a solid effort.  This is an opponent they won’t take lightly.  BUF won its first four games, scoring 31 PPG. All four games went OVER the total.  Meanwhile, TEN won its first three games by combined total of just six points.  No bets.

ARZ -7 at NYJ [O/U: 47.5]:  ARZ played a horrible game last week and now plays another roadie, this time versus the NFL’s worst team.  The matchup seems like a perfect spot for Cardinals to gain some confidence and bounce back with a big win.  But I’m off the ARZ train, for now.  Cardinals were held to 133 passing yards last week; they gave up 444 yards to Carolina!  Not sure they deserve to be laying a full touchdown after blowing two games in a row, versus weak competition — Detroit and the Panthers.  No bets.

MIN at SEA -7 [O/U: 57.5):  Here’s the highest total of the week based on two high-scoring offenses combined with two defenses that can’t seem to stop anybody.  I’d normally throw caution to the wind and try to stand up to the storm winds — fading expectations of points being scored and take the contrarian value — but I can’t do that right now.  I lean to MIN plus the 7, but won’t be making any wagers.

 

GAMES I DID BET:

PHI at PIT -7 [O/U: 44]:  A rested PIT team that’s played excellent defense, so far, should be able to handle an injury-plagued opponent coming off a false win versus a decimated opponent (SFO) last week.  Really bad situation for PHI here, still struggling on offense and now facing a tough test.  I’ll lay the -7 and also look for points to be scored, particularly in the first half.  I found a 20.5 (first-half total) so I’m counting on these two teams to produce at least three touchdowns.  A 14-7 Steeler lead at the half would be nice.  Two bets here — the favourite and OVER in the first-half.  PIT -7 and IH OVER 20.5.  Also, TEASE PIT to -1.

CIN at BAL -13.5 [O/U: 49.5]:  Give me the AFC North division dog getting nearly two touchdowns.  CIN has shown steady improvement every week (one tie, and one win) and as the Bengals offense gels with more experience, they should be able to stay within the margins of games like this, which may have a jaded line based on outdated perception (yeah, CIN still has much to prove).  BAL looked sloppy at times last week, despite the easy win at WAS, and could take this opponent lightly.  I think any capper who understands betting value has to play CIN here, so I will.  CIN +13.5

IND -1 at CLE [O/U: 47.5]:  This looks like one of the best games of the week with a matchup of CLE which is scoring lots of points versus one of NFL’s best defenses, allowing just 11 PPG its last three contests.  Tempting to play the home dog here, but I’ll pass on the side.  Instead, given how scoring is up, I”’ play OVER 23 in the first half of this game.  Both of these teams have been solid offensively in the first halfs, so anything under the league average (25 PPG in 1H) looks bettable.  1H OVER 23.

MIA at SFO -8.5 [O/U: 50.5]:  QB Garoppolo isn’t expected to play here; could be 3rd-stringer Beathard.  QB issues and injuries haven’t stopped the 49ers from scoring points.  But they’re just 2-2 and I’m not sure a team that’s lost both their home games this season should now be laying more than a TD to anyone, especially since MIA does occasionally show up with a solid effort.  Dolphins did have SEA on ropes in 2H last week before a killer interception.  They could very well be 4-0 ATS, but as many young teams do — they make mistakes.  Given SFO injury issues, I’ll count on Dolphins to be able to put enough things together to get the cover.  MIA +8.5

NYG at DAL -8.5 [O/U: 54]:  Dallas should win this game by four touchdowns.  But will they?  I’m counting on the talent disparity and motivation to created a lopsided game from the openning kickoff.  Keep in mind DAL is the #1 ranked offense in the NFL and should get into the 30+ range versus a weak defense.  Meanwhile, the Cowboys terrible defense finally faces an opponent they should be able to shut down.  It’s hard to see how Giants with a horrid offensive line and no rushing game will keep up with DAL, which is absolutely desperate for a win.  It also hurts the Giants to play on the road a second straight week while DAL has been at home, in their own training facility, and stewing over a terrible performance last week versus CLE.  I expect they’ll take it out on the Giants here, who have lost the last three visits to DAL by an average of 17 points.  Former DAL head coach and current NYG offensive coordinator J. Garret simply doesn’t have the weapons here to take advantage of any presumed insider knowledge based on his years with the Cowboys.  I’m laying the chalk and also teasing DAL down to -2.5  DAL -8.5 and DAL teased on two plays (with New Orleans and with Pittsburgh)  BEST BET (DAL/NOR TEASER)

LAC at NOR -8.5 [O/U: 50]:  Saints appeared to get their confidence back last week with a big win at DET and back home now, they’ll be motivated to get to 3-2 on MNF.  LAC, losers of three straight, play another road game here, and young QB is getting just his fourth NFL start.  I’ll fade the Chargers prospects of pulling off the possible upset here.  NOR is a notoriously poor early-season team (ATS) but once they get a few games under their belt, under Sean Peyton they turn into a winning and covering machine.  I do have some concern LAC defense could be a factor and NOR does occasionally fall short when laying big spreads versus bog dogs.  But here, on MNF even without the boisterous home crowd, NOR should be in good shape to take care of business.  I think the better value rather than laying -8.5 now, is to tease this down to -2.5 (I got this early in the week teased down to -1 when the line was -7).

 

THIS WEEK’S WAGERS (8 bets):

PITTSBURGH -7 vs. Philadelphia — Laying $220 to win $200

PITTSBURGH/PHILADELPHIA OVER 20.5 (1H) — Laying $330 to win $300

CINCINNATI +13.5 vs. Baltimore — Laying $275 to win $250

INDIANAPOLIS/CLEVELAND OVER OVER 23 (1H) — Laying $330 to win $300

MIAMI +8.5 vs. San Francisco — Laying $330 to win $300

DALLAS -8.5 vs. NY Giants — Laying $550 to win $500

DALLAS -2.5/NEW ORLEANS -2.5 TEASER (-120) — Laying $960 to win $800 [BEST BET]

DALLAS -2.5/PITTSBURGH -1 TEASER (-120) — Laying $600 to win $500

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Posted by on Oct 8, 2020 in Blog, Essays | 2 comments

Trump, the Welfare Queen

 

 

TRUMP — THE WELFARE QUEEN

— lives in government housing
— no apparent skills or knowledge
— doesn’t pay taxes
— six bankruptcies
— sponges free healthcare
— no creditworthiness (a deadbeat)
— five kids from three different wives *
— drives a Cadillac

 

* current one can’t speak English

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