Scenes from Sin City: Steelers bettor doubles down on fandom

Each week during football season, Covers writer Colin Kelly will be in the Las Vegas sportsbooks profiling bettors just like you, sharing their Sin City stories, big wins, bad beats, and all the fun stuff that’s supposed to “stay in Vegas.”

Arthur Corral can draw at least one parallel to that Dos Equis beer spokesman. You know, “The most interesting man in the world.”

Because Corral doesn’t always go to the sportsbooks, but when he does, he bets the Steelers.

That was the case Sunday at the Sunset Station book, a generally locals shop miles from the glitz of the Las Vegas Strip or downtown. Corral joined a group of friends, all of whom had rooting interests in different games. But as his Franco Harris jersey gave away, Corral’s concern was the Pittsburgh Steelers.

“This is my first bet this season,” he said. “But if I’m going to bet, I can never not bet on my team. If I think they’re gonna lose, I just don’t make the bet. I don’t want to jinx them in any way.”

He’s confident this day, opting to double his Steelers pleasure by taking Pittsburgh on the moneyline, along with the over against 1-point home favorite Cincinnati.

“I felt really confident because we need to win. And we looked so good last week,” Corral said, alluding to Pittsburgh’s 45-10 torching of Indianapolis as a 10-point home favorite. “We looked like the Steelers of old.”

That would be not only the teams of a few years ago that collected a couple of Super Bowl titles, but the great teams of the 1970s that racked up four Lombardi trophies. Those were the teams that turned Corral – born in Hawaii, raised in California and a resident of Las Vegas for 10 years now – into a Steelers fan.

“I dressed up as Mean Joe Green when I was three years old,” said the 46-year-old Corral.

As the game was heading toward halftime, Pittsburgh took a 16-7 lead, and Cincy was without quarterback Andy Dalton, who broke his thumb in the first quarter.

“If we lose to them now, we’ve got some soul-searching to do,” Corral said.

Honestly, the Bengals didn’t have much hope without Dalton. So the only question was whether the Steelers would get the points to bring in the over for Corral, with the total set at 49. Pittsburgh entered the contest having scored 30 points or more in four straight games, and the Steelers ultimately did it again, winning 33-20 to give Corral a winning ticket.

“It’s a fun bet, a fun parlay. I’m just out here with my friends, having fun,” he said.

Corral said he’s never seen a Steelers game in Pittsburgh, but that he had returned to the islands on several occasions and seen Steelers in the Pro Bowl. His hope is to literally take his team to the grave.

“I have a hat signed by Kendrell Bell, Bill Cowher and Hines Ward. I want them to put that hat on me when I’m in my coffin, at the viewing.”

Colin Kelly is a Las Vegas-based contributor for Covers. Follow him on Twitter: @ColinPKelly29.

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