Boomer Esiason: Former WFAN Co-Host Craig Carton A ‘Cautionary Tale’ For Gambling Addiction

In a Manhattan federal court on Wednesday, former co-host Craig Carton of the popular WFAN morning sports talk show “Boomer & Carton” was convicted on all three charges he faced in connection with a multi-million dollar ticket brokering scheme, in which investors got fleeced. 

Why’d he do it? At least in part, or in large part, due to gambling addiction, specifically casino table games such as blackjack. When federal agents knocked on Carton’s door in Sept. 2017 before the sun rose, the show that had run since 2007 effectively ended. Co-host and former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason, as well as other show staffers, were caught by surprise and claim to have no knowledge whatsoever about Carton’s criminal activity. Ultimately Carton was found guilty of securities fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud. He now faces up to 45 years in prison.

On Thursday morning, Esiason, producer Al Dukes, and others reacted to the conviction  on-air. Said Esiason (watch here):

“For anybody out there, who’s ever had anybody in their life who has dealt with any sort of addiction — drugs, alcohol, gambling — this is a cautionary tale of how your life can spiral out of control and how it can affect so many around you, including your own family, the people that you work with and the people that you try to do business with on the outside.

“Last night, there was a moment that I had where I just said, ‘You know, I can’t believe that it’s finally come to an end,’ and it led us to where we are today.”

After the charges came down, WFAN suspended Carton and later terminated him. Boomer stayed aboard and later Gregg “Gio” Giannotti replaced Carton, forming “Boomer and Gio.”


Read more Boomer Esiason: Former WFAN Co-Host Craig Carton A ‘Cautionary Tale’ For Gambling Addiction on SportsHandle.

Daily Fantasy Sports Coming to (Most Of) Louisiana After Voters Approve Ballot Measure

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) are coming to the Bayou State after residents in most of the state’s 64 parishes voted in favor of a ballot initiative to allow residents of those parishes to play in online DFS contests.

According to the Times-Picayune, 47 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes voted in favor of legalizing online DFS contests, with most of those against it located in north Louisiana, while most parishes in the Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Lafayette areas voted in favor. DFS will be available only to those within the parishes that voted in favor — not statewide.

Because the Louisiana state constitution prohibits gambling, the legislation sponsored by state representative Kirk Talbot’s (R-River Ridge), which triggered the ballot initiative read, “participation in any fantasy sports contest … shall not be considered gambling.”  


Read more Daily Fantasy Sports Coming to (Most Of) Louisiana After Voters Approve Ballot Measure on SportsHandle.

Harrah’s, Rivers and Sugarhouse Casinos Approved for PA Sports Wagering Certificates

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approved applications for three more sports betting certificates at its Wednesday morning meeting, bringing the total number of casinos licensed for PA sports betting to five. Chester Downs and Marina, LLC (Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack), Holdings Acquisitions Co., LP (Rivers Casino) and SugarHouse HSAP Gaming, LP (SugarHouse Casino) all got board approval. Rivers and Sugarhouse are both owned by Rush Street Gaming.

Wednesday’s meeting went smoothly with all three applicants making detailed presentations. The petitions were approved immediately after the final presentation. Each company reviewed its gaming history, both in Pennsylvania and in other states, shared plans for what their temporary and permanent sportsbooks will look like and briefly touched on the desire to roll out internet and mobile gaming sooner than later. The focus on Wednesday, however, was the brick-and-mortar locations.

Pennsylvania initially made 13 sports betting certificates available — one for each licensed casino — and with Wednesday’s approvals, five have been claimed and approved.


Read more Harrah’s, Rivers and Sugarhouse Casinos Approved for PA Sports Wagering Certificates on SportsHandle.

‘Lookahead Lines’: Dolphins Spread Moves Out to Key Number Hosting Bears, Who Were Idle Last Week on Bye

The post ‘Lookahead Lines’: Dolphins Spread Moves Out to Key Number Hosting Bears, Who Were Idle Last Week on Bye appeared first on SportsHandle.

Every week, Sports Handle will look at NFL lines, specifically “Lookahead Lines,” to see how they’re moving and why. Lookahead lines are those posted one week prior to a game or even before the season has begun, as CG Technology does.

By comparing changes between current lines and the numbers hung days earlier, we can get a sense of where recency bias or overreactions are seeping in.

We’ll highlight the significant shifts, look for value and suggest when it’s a good idea to get behind or stay away from certain teams. Here’s a look at the Week NFL 5 line moves and what it means to bettors. (Note: odds indicated based on current numbers at several Las Vegas sportsbooks.)

NFL Week 6 Lookahead and Current Line Moves Show Value on Miami Hosting Chicago; Falcons-Bucs Line Contracts As Atlanta Circles Drain; Faith In Raiders Bottoming Out

nfl week 6 picks bears dolphins lookahead lines

Chicago Bears at Miami Dolphins (+3 or especially +3.5)

The Bears come into Week 6 at 3-1 and atop the NFC North standings. Chicago was once 100/1 to win the Super Bowl this summer and are now down to 25/1 at the SuperBook.

Last week the SuperBook had the Dolphins -1. That line was similar to the one CG Technology released in May at Miami -1.5. However, the line has gone up the Bears -3 and Chicago didn’t even play last week.

While people’s perception of the Bears has changed since the season started, the Dolphins are going in the opposite direction. After starting the year 3-0, Miami has lost its last two games to the Patriots and Bengals by at least 10 points. One thing to keep in mind is the Bears have only played one road game this year, a 16-14 win over the Cardinals. The Dolphins beat the Titans 27-20 and the Raiders 28-20 in their two home games.

Miami is coming off a face-melting 27-17 loss to the Bengals after Cincinnati scored 24 fourth quarter points to win by 10, and cover 6.5. This movement spells some value on Miami as the 3-point home dog and especially if you grab an available hook.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons (-3.5)

This game has seen the biggest line movement after the Falcons got blown out in Pittsburgh last week to drop to 1-4 on the season. The Buccaneers had a bye last week and will be making the switch to Jameis Winston at quarterback.

CG Technology made the Falcons a touchdown favorite back in May. The SuperBook’s early number was similar with the Falcons -6.5 last week. After the Falcons got blown out by the Steelers 41-17 on Sunday, the SuperBook released the line at Atlanta -3.5 and it hasn’t moved off that number as of Wednesday.

There could be some value taking the Falcons here, although they haven’t had much of a home field advantage this year, going 1-2 SU and ATS, and have hemorrhaged 43, 37 and 41 points in their past three contests. 

Seattle Seahawks vs. Oakland Raiders (+3) – London

This game is being played in London and the Seahawks are seeing the line shift their way coming off a home loss to the Rams. The SuperBook made this game a pick ’em last week and then opened Seattle at -3. 

Even though the Seahawks are 2-3, the line says more about how bettors perceive the Raiders. The Jon Gruden era is off to a slow start with Oakland opening the season at 1-4. The Raiders have played three close game but they looked bad in a 26-10 blowout loss to the Chargers last week, while the Seahawks played well against the undefeated Rams, losing 33-31 as a 7-point underdog.

The London games are always tough because theirs no home field edge. The Seahawks look to be a little overvalued when you consider they’re coming off an emotional loss and now have to travel to London. This number looks like it should be closer to the pick it was last week and the -3 is an overreaction to Sunday’s results.

Baltimore Ravens at Tennessee Titans (+3)

The Titans are leading the AFC South with a record of 3-2 and the Ravens are coming off a 12-9 loss to the Browns. Despite the Titans’ early season success, the line has gone towards the Ravens on the road.

Last week, the SuperBook had Baltimore -1 on the early lines but even after the Ravens’ loss to the Browns, the number has gone to -3. CG Technology had the Titans a 2.5-point favorite back in May and it can be argued that after five games, Tennessee has exceeded expectations.

The Titans are winning ugly and that kind of style typically doesn’t get the public excited. Tennessee has won both its home games by three points but a 13-12 loss in Buffalo last week is one reason the line went up to three. Losing to the Bills is one way to change the public’s perception of a team.

Note that the Ravens are 1-2 both SU and ATS on the road this season. The Titans are worth a look as one of the most undervalued teams in the NFL, while the average Ravens tend to be overvalued right now.

Also Check Out:

On The Pro Football Handle, Las Vegas-based sports talk voice Matt Perrault and veteran bookmaker Robert Walker of USBookmakingdive into select NFL games, line movements and bookmaker liabilities, plus greater sports betting topics and stories that may have nothing to do with football. Walker has seen it all behind the counter and Perrault the same from behind the microphone, so they’ll have you prepared for anything.

Here’s the NFL Week 6 pod:

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The post ‘Lookahead Lines’: Dolphins Spread Moves Out to Key Number Hosting Bears, Who Were Idle Last Week on Bye appeared first on SportsHandle.

Top New Jersey Regulator Calls Out Pro Leagues ‘Fear Mongering’ on Sports Betting

New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement Director (DGE) David Rebuck on Tuesday offered his blunt assessment of the NFL’s characterization of the state of sports betting in the U.S.: “Nonsense.”

The NFL’s stance, voiced again at House of Representatives hearing on Sept. 27, was that states legalizing sports wagering are now engaging in a “regulatory race to the bottom,” which Rebuck called “fear mongering” and “nonsense.”

Rebuck’s remarks came during a Global Gaming Expo (G2E) panel in Las Vegas alongside Pennsylvania’s Susan Hensel, Director of Licensing for the state’s gaming control board, and Matthew Morgan, Director of Gaming Affairs for the Chickasaw Nation. Rebuck’s criticism focused in part on the “integrity fee” as well as Major League Baseball and NBA’s efforts at compelling lawmakers to require state-licensed sportsbooks to use “official league data” for grading wagers, which he framed as fundamentally anti-business, and a mandate that New Jersey unequivocally will not implement.


Read more Top New Jersey Regulator Calls Out Pro Leagues ‘Fear Mongering’ on Sports Betting  on SportsHandle.

‘Pro Football Handle’ Week 5: Seahawks-Rams, Jaguars-Chiefs, DraftKings Moves and Much More

The post ‘Pro Football Handle’ Week 5: Seahawks-Rams, Jaguars-Chiefs, DraftKings Moves and Much More appeared first on SportsHandle.

On The Pro Football Handle podcast, Las Vegas-based sports talk voice Matt Perrault and veteran bookmaker Robert Walker of USBookmaking dive into select NFL games, line movements and bookmaker liabilities, plus greater sports betting topics and stories that may have nothing to do with football. Walker has seen it all behind the counter and Perrault the same from behind the microphone, so they’ll have you prepared for anything.

Happy NFL Week 5! More pretty high totals this week with several games at 50-plus and the Atlanta Falcons at Pittsburgh Steelers even approaching 60. Will the Kansas City Chiefs (-3) stay perfect (against the spread and otherwise) with QB phenom Patrick Mahomes — with the Jaguars coming to Arrowhead? And can the Super Bowl-favorite L.A. Rams keep the momentum against the Seattle Seahawks and the “12th Man” as a touchdown favorite on the road?

Spotify fans go here to listen.  Time codes for the episode follow below. Your feedback is welcome at @sports_handle.

1:05: Some industry news: DraftKings has hired two veteran, well-respected Nevada sportsbook executives week. These moves are a big win for DraftKings and its growing stable of bookmaking talent. The guys also explore casino protectionism and the future of online betting.

15:10: Indianapolis Colts -10 at New England Patriots (Thursday night)–  Sources tell Perrault Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski will not play, while the Colts are riddled with injuries. The line is surprisingly high and puts the public and the pros may be on the same side.

21:00: The state of penalties in NFL.

26:21: Oakland Raiders +5 at L.A. Chargers — Chargers players say they are frustrated about home games feeling like road games, and linemakers agree.

29:40: Baltimore Ravens -3 at Cleveland Browns — Lines opened at Baltimore -1, now it’s out to  -3. The Ravens are not a public team, but they may be best team in AFC.

32:27: Game of the Week: Jacksonville Jaguars +3 at Kansas City Chiefs: Perrault says, Kansas City fans buy into their teams way too fast. Mahomes MVP talk and best QB in NFL already? The Chiefs are due to get beaten down.

36:42: Atlanta Falcons +3 at Pittsburgh Steelers — Are the Steelers favored because they are home or because they are a public (but totally ordinary) team?

39:58: Minnesota Vikings +3 at Philadelphia Eagles — The public will be on Philly, but will Minnesota really lose three in a row?

42:18: Dallas Cowboys +3 at Houston Texans —  The teams are even but the Texans have more upsides than the ‘Boys.

44:01: L.A. Rams -7 at  Seattle Seahawks — Everyone is on the Rams bandwagon, but if the Rams are going to get beat, it will be by someone like the Seahawks: well coached, passionate and in a tough environment. The Rams may escape with a victory, but take the points or walk away.

48:30: How much do linemakers adjust to video game-like totals?

53:03: Arizona Cardinals +4 at San Francisco 49ers — The 49ers have no Jimmy G and the Cards are a rollercoaster.

55:20: Washington Redskins -6.5 at New Orleans Saints — Upset alert? Monday Night Football will be a fun game if Washington can keep the ball moving.

55:48: N.Y. Giants +6.5 at Carolina Panthers — The Giants are bad and Walker is Eli Manning’s biggest detractor. Pros are on Big Blue at 7.

58:09: Tennessee Titans -4.5 at Buffalo Bills — The Titans may not score… but the Bills are not going to put up numbers against their D.

Have a profitable Week 5, folks. Follow Perrault on Twitter @sportstalkmatt and Walker @robertusfsports.

Thanks for listening and see you back next week, tell a friend, sign up for our newsletter and also check out our Cover City Podcast, featuring sports bettor Eric Rosenthal.


Hear more ‘Pro Football Handle’ Week 5: Seahawks-Rams, Jaguars-Chiefs, DraftKings Moves and Much More  on SportsHandle.

William Hill And IGT Partner Up, Look to Dominate Sports Betting Connected to US Lotteries

The post William Hill And IGT Partner Up, Look to Dominate Sports Betting Connected to US Lotteries appeared first on SportsHandle.

Displaying assurance in their Rhode Island alliance and the probability that many states will operate sports betting through current lottery operations, IGT Global Solutions Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of International Game Technology and William Hill U.S., a subsidiary of William Hill revealed Tuesday they have entered into a multi-year agreement to offer U.S. lotteries a full service solution for sports betting.

In late August, the Rhode Island Lottery chose IGT and William Hill to jointly run its sports betting operation under the state lottery umbrella. IGT, the long-time lottery contractor in Rhode Island with brick-and mortar offices in Providence, is using its sports betting platform with William Hill serving as risk manager.

Rhode Island Lottery officials project that sports betting operations are not expected to be up and running at the state’s two casino locations until mid-November, well into the NFL and college football season.

Read more William Hill And IGT Partner Up, Look to Dominate Sports Betting Connected to US Lotteries on SportsHandle.

Best Gambling And Sports Betting Scenes: ‘I’m Shocked’ In ‘Casablanca’

The post Best Gambling And Sports Betting Scenes: ‘I’m Shocked’ In ‘Casablanca’ appeared first on SportsHandle.

Time for another installment in Sports Handle’s ongoing series on The Best Best Gambling And Sports Betting ScenesThere’s a lot of high-quality movies centered on gambling, including on horse racing and poker Let It Ride and Rounders). All quality gambling scenes, whether strictly sports betting or not, the focus of the film or a short aside, will be included/considered. 

We were reminded recently of this scene from the classic 1942 film Casablanca after reading U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse’s written questions regarding the nomination/confirmation Brett Kavanaugh to become an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

In case you missed it, Whitehouse has grilled Kavanaugh about gambling, asking about debts, an apology in 2001 for “growing aggressive after blowing still another game of dice,” and his participation in a poker game and more.

Saying absolutely nothing about whether or not Kavanaugh has a problem (he has denied that) and the serious threat that such debts could pose to the high court and the nation… here is the “I’m shocked” scene from Casablanca. Gambling has always existed in the U.S. and always will, while occasionally a game gets shut down, as it is here by Major Heinrich Strasser (Conrad Veidt), who tasks Captain Louis Renault (Claude Reins) with sending everyone out.

Read more Best Gambling And Sports Betting Scenes: ‘I’m Shocked’ In ‘Casablanca’ on SportsHandle.

Week 1 NFL Picks: Bengals Bite, Vikings’ Might And More

The post TPS Report: Week 1 NFL Picks: Bengals Bite, Vikings’ Might And More appeared first on SportsHandle.

Week 1 is among the more difficult to handicap every NFL season. From Black Monday in early January through the preseason, every team gets recast with new coaches, coordinators, players come and go, schemes change, and in rare but shocking instances, the moving trucks show up overnight and your city loses the damn team entirely. The point is, year over year, every team is a different product, it’s only a matter of degree.

Since the start of the last NFL season, a lot of things have changed both in the NFL and the US sports betting world, and personally in the Smiley household. Put it all together and I wasn’t sure what would become of this column, which has been a joy of mine in some form for five years.

The NFL changes are mostly pretty standard NFL changes. A lot of things change and some remain the same, apparently now including the Atlanta Falcons’ inability to execute in the red zone.


For U.S. sports betting, well, everything has changed. By the end of this year, at least six new states outside Nevada will have legalized sports betting, with retail operations live, with varying level of mobile sport betting accessible. It may be years still before residents of some states have easy access to this Brave New Market  — such as the massive populations of Texas and California — but at least PASPA is gone and the door is now open.

On the personal front… I have always followed a week-to-week process of preparation for the NFL betting slate. It has been thrown into chaos recently. There are new and many responsibilities here at our growing Sports Handle, and more importantly I now have a two-week old son who in the past few days has urinated on my face more than once. Rookie mistake: I’ve learned you don’t leave a male infant’s bottom half uncovered mid-diaper change. I gave the stream a stiff-arm, closed in and let him finish against my open palm, rather than allow a soaking of the carpet or my shirt. He also requires feedings every few hours, which has cut into my sleep reservoir.  This is a Smiley boy, meaning he doesn’t miss a meal. It’s all worth it, of course, but I’m adjusting to a new life (mine and his) every day, and figuring out how to manage and maximize time.

I thought of retiring the Three-Point Stance Report (TPS) in a world where every major and minor publication now has writers making picks and offering gambling breakdowns. Some behind a paywall, others in front. What can Brett Smiley do differently? The answer I determined is just be myself, hopefully turn a few good jokes or phrases, and fall on the right side of 54 percent over the course of this season. Betting on NFL games is my main hobby, so why hang up the column? It’s why Sports Handle was born in the first place.

So the TPS Report marches on. This season we will cover the top five or six NFL games — “top” meaning the ones where I believe I can identify an edge or identify a winning wager, rather than reviewing the entire slate. Let’s get to it: The first NFL Week 1 of the post-PASPA era!

Cincinnati Bengals +2.5 at Indianapolis Colts (Total 48)

I think the Bengals are going to win outright,  but I’ll take the available 2.5 against the semi-trendy pick to bounce back and compete for the AFC South title — the Colts. It’s good to see that franchise QB Andrew Luck’s shoulder is well enough so he can play again in his first regular season game since New Year’s Day in 2017. For reference, that was three weeks before Donald Trump’s inauguration. Make of that what you will.

Luck showed some flashes of his old self in the preseason but temper your expectations about out his walk on the comeback trail. Consider these dispatches:



Capt. Luck is indeed ready but we could feel better about the Colts offense if he wasn’t playing, as ever, behind a mediocre-at-best offensive line that may be without starting left tackle Andrew Castonzo (who has struggled when healthy).

The Tiger men on are going to be bearing down on Luck, while on the other side the Colts see a new-look Bengals offense under coordinator Bill Lazor. A reset Bengals offense with improvements on their offensive line, namely additions of LT Cordy Glenn and 2018 first-rounder Billy Price (Ohio State) at center, will give Andy Dalton time to exploit a young, inexperienced defense, especially at linebacker and in the secondary.  

The pick: Bengals +2.5. 

Get the remaining picks TPS Report: Week 1 NFL Picks: Bengals Bite, Vikings’ Might And More on SportsHandle.

Study: NFL Will Make Billions From Legal Sports Betting


If there was ever any question about whether or not professional sports leagues would benefit from legal sports betting, it was answered Wednesday.

According to a Neilson study commissioned by the American Gaming Association, the NFL stands to see a $2.3 billion increase in revenue from legalized sports betting. The study projects that the NFL will gain about $1.8 billion in revenue from increased fan engagement, and $573 million directly from sports betting.

American Gaming Association senior vice president of public affairs Sara Slane used phrases like “great upside for all stakeholders” and “massive economic” increases when describing how sports betting would impact the professional sports leagues during a conference call with media on Tuesday.

Legal Sports Betting Must Reach ‘Full Potential’ for NFL and Other Pro Leagues to See Benefits Described in Study.

nfl odds betting win totals

Where will the money come from? According to the study results, the NFL will benefit the most from indirect means, including “increased consumption and engagement with the league and its contents/products.” In simpler terms, the NFL will get more viewers and sell more gear creating an increased revenue stream through media rights, sponsorship, merchandise and ticket sales. According to the study, the nearly $1.8 billion in new revenue represents a 13.4 increase for the league. The NFL will see the biggest increase in revenue from media rights, which spending is expected to increase by 17.9 percent.

Read the complete post – Study: NFL Will Make Billions From Legal Sports Betting on SportsHandle.