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Leading Las Vegas

The World's Most Successful Sports Bettor Tells How He Uses Computers and Guile to Move the Line
Michael Konik
From the Print Edition:
Michael Richards, Sep/Oct 97

(continued from page 3)

Indeed, the Line Mover says, the professional touts, so-called "experts" who sell their opinions to gullible gamblers via expensive 900 lines, help him win his yearly millions.

"People follow these touts blindly, like they're in a cult. Ninety percent of the time I bet against the tout's opinion. See, by promoting one side of a game so vigorously, they can sometimes move the line four, five, six points. That," he says, smiling broadly, "tends to create some very profitable situations."

The Super Bowl, according to the Line Mover, is a prime example. For five of the past six years, he says, the line has beendramatically off. Wildly off. "Only problem is, the public's been right. I've bet on every loser."

He says this without a trace of bitterness, sounding very much like a man who is so used to being right that he is almost amused to occasionally be wrong.

"If you're going to be successful at betting sports, you've got to realize one important thing," the Line Mover counsels. "You're going to have losing games. You're going to have losing weeks. You're probably going to even have losing months, and maybe years. But," he says, nodding slowly, "it's all one big, long game."

Contributing editor Michael Konik is Cigar Aficionado's gambling columnist. The New Poker Champ

This year's World Champion of Poker is Stu Ungar (above right, with Jack Binion) from Las Vegas. Ungar, 43, beat a record field of 312 players at the World Series of Poker at Binion's Horseshoe, winning the $1 million first prize and writing his name into history. Perhaps even more important than triumphing over the best poker players on the planet, Ungar overcame a host of personal travails, including a debilitating drug problem, which rendered him virtually invisible from the Vegas poker scene for much of the past 10 years. With his victory, Ungar is only the second player in World Series history to win the main event three times--the first was the legendary Johnny Moss. How did he do it? "I just played perfect," he said. "So perfect." He's got one million examples to prove it.


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