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Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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Casino City’s Friday Five: March Madness, WSOP and jackpots edition

18 Mar 2022

By Dan Ippolito
The NCAA tournament is upon us and some brackets are probably already busted. In addition to checking out your future wagers on the March Madness champions, we have some betting stats for this year’s tournament. Also this week, we had two major jackpots paid out, new trade shows coming to Las Vegas, and a World Series of Poker tournament taking place in New York.

Let’s begin with some news out of Sin City:

5. LCVA bringing in new trade shows to Las Vegas
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority is securing new business for Las Vegas with the announcement of deals that will bring major trade shows to the Las Vegas Convention Center over the next decade.

The National Confectioners Association announced that its Sweets & Snacks Expo will rotate between Las Vegas and Indianapolis for the next ten years, with the show being held in Las Vegas every third year beginning in 2026.

The Global System for Mobile Communications will move its North American edition of Mobile World Congress to Las Vegas for the first time from 28-30 September and will return to the Las Vegas Convention Center in 2023.

In addition to signing new shows, the LVCVA has extended several existing convention contracts, including the following:

- Fancy Food Show 2024 – extended for 15-17 January 2023, and 21-23 January 2024
- 2023 Wedding MBA Convention – extended for 7-8 November 2023
- Tobacco Plus Expo 2023 – extended for 22-24 February 2023
- Cosmoprof 2023 – extended for 11-13 July 2023
- NFR Cowboy Christmas Gift Show 2022 – extended for 1-10 December 2022

4. Blackjack jackpot awarded to Mohegan Sun Pocono
A $199,790.60 jackpot was hit by Vincent from Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania on Saturday, 5 March while playing the Blazing 7’s Blackjack Progressive Jackpot at Mohegan Sun Pocono. This is the largest jackpot win at the Pennsylvania casino this year.

The Blazing 7’s Blackjack Progressive game is a popular table game at Mohegan Sun Pocono where guests can begin a round of play by making a standard blackjack bet, while also placing a bet on the Blazing 7’s progressive circle. The dealer will then follow the house procedures for blackjack. Guests can win if at least one of their first two cards are a seven, and the opportunities increase significantly if a guest is holding two 7s, and the dealer’s up card is also a seven.

3. The Cromwell Las Vegas pays out six-figure win
After an hour of play, Dennis Albers became the lucky winner of the Mega Jackpot on Face Up Pai Gow at The Cromwell Las Vegas on Tuesday, 15 March, resulting in a win of $1,082,701.

Albers was in town for a meeting and tried his luck on Face Up Pai Gow three times during his trip before winning the jackpot.

He intends to use his winnings to donate to charity, share some of his winnings with family and possibly buy a vacation home.

2. This Week in Gambling: March Madness betting in the US
Spring is almost here and 45 million Americans are expected to bet on March Madness and drop a staggering $3 billion in wagers. Part of the reason for this is obviously the fact that sports betting regulation continues to spread across America, with nearly 30 million additional adults allowed to legally bet on March Madness this year over last.

It’s expected that almost $21 million will be bet on “outside of bracket” contests either online, in person, or between friends.

The vast majority of betting on March Madness, however, will be on the tournament brackets. As estimated 36 million people will participate in a bracket contest or pool. Most are picking Gonzaga to win, followed closely by Duke University.

The President of the AGA, Bill Miller, stated that “Americans continue to make it clear: they want to wager with the protections of the legal, regulated market. There’s no doubt this year will generate the highest legal handle in March Madness history”.

1. Turning Stone Casino kicks off World Series of Poker event
On 16 March, Turning Stone Resort Casino and representatives from the World Series of Poker celebrated the kick-off of New York’s first WSOP tournament with a special event in the Lounge with Caesars Sports.

Over 12 days, thousands of guests are expected to travel to upstate New York and participate in the tournament and compete fora chance to win more than $1 million, a seat in the WSOP “Tournament of Champions” in Las Vegas, and 15 different opportunities to take home an iconic WSOP ring.

Being selected to host a WSOP Circuit event in 2022 was awarded to fewer than 15 casinos in the world, distinguishing Turning Stone as the only WSOP Circuit event in the Northeast.

“During my previous World Series of Poker event, I usually get a dozen questions about the next event, but we’ve had hundreds of players specifically ask about the event here at Turning Stone,” said Dennis Jones, World Series of Poker Tournament Director. “From the moment I pulled into the resort, I was truly amazed by the beauty of the property; from the restaurants to the hotels, I know the players are going to be excited to be here at Turning Stone.”
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