“We’ve got two ballrooms upstairs that are just about filled already,” Vaccaro says, about an hour before the first games tipped today and with a steady stream of bettors already at the windows. “We’ve even dedicated four race windows to take [basketball] bets today. The atmosphere now is that the general public takes over for these events. It’s 20-1 recreational bettors over the wiseguys. It’s a party, a theme, an event. You want to win, but you want to have a good time.”
And you want to get a good seat.
“There were 30 people sitting here at 5 a.m., four hours before the games tipped off,” Vaccaro says. “They just want to make sure they get a seat.”
Vaccaro also took note that the crowd wasn’t just a bunch of the boys on a spring break basketball bender.
“We’re seeing more and more women, and a large part of them understand the difference between the moneyline and betting 11 to make 10,” he says. “Thirty years ago, that would present a question mark for them. Now, they’re savvy. Women are eventually gonna dominate everything!”
Colin Kelly is a Las Vegas-based contributor for Covers. Follow him on Twitter: @ColinPKelly29.