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Pennsylvania online casinos award retired construction worker $125,000

3 Jan 2020

(PRESS RELEASE) -- A retired construction worker and his wife are toasting the new year after winning the grand prize in the SugarHouse Online Casino Pennsylvania and BetRivers Online $500,000 Pro Football Pick’em. Gary Heineman, of Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, won the guaranteed top prize of $125,000 for picking the most winners at the end of the season in the state’s first ever online Vegas Style pick ‘em contest. Although players could enter multiple entries, he did it with just one.

Heineman said he and his wife Roxanne started shaking when they got the call that they’d won the grand prize.

"We are just working class people and that’s a lot of money," said the 57 year old. "We are so excited we just can’t believe this. It’s life changing."

When asked how they planned on spending the money and if it would help with Christmas bills Heineman said, "We actually decided not to exchange gifts for Christmas and instead save so we could take a vacation. Now we can do both and go anywhere we want! I’m planning on upgrading my wife’s wedding ring as her Christmas present as she was key in our winning strategy."

Heineman said initially they just entered to have fun but they kept picking winners and soon were in eighth place. That’s when they got serious and his wife started researching what the odds experts were saying and how the Vegas books and public were betting. They picked the favorites at first but as the season neared its end, they decided they needed to be different if they were going to win, and went for some long shots like the Jets, Bengals and Bears which they believe, in this season’s crazy last games, made all the difference.

Each week of the NFL season, players picked the winners of Sunday and Monday pro football games and whoever picked the most winners at the end of the season collected the guaranteed $125,000 prize. Overall, 500 top pick winners were paid out cash winnings at the season’s end, in addition to the top weekly score on each site earning $2,500 each week. The entrant with the most incorrect picks also received a $2,500 payout. In all, $500,000 was paid to entrants.

This was the first NFL season with legal online and mobile sports betting in the Keystone state. That’s why Rush Street Interactive, the digital sports wagering and gaming supplier of Pennsylvania’s first two online gaming sites, wanted to offer NFL fans a rewarding way to show off their pro football knowledge.

"This final week in the NFL has been one of the most exciting and entertaining that I can ever recall," said Mattias Stetz, C.O.O. of Rush Street Interactive, which operates and "We created the $500,000 Pro Pick’em Football contest to make this season even more thrilling for football fans by giving them a fun way to get in on all the NFL sports betting action with chances to win huge cash prizes. Our players loved it—especially Gary Heineman!"

Not only will this win make the New Year a whole lot happier for Heineman, but it’s also his birthday this week. Now that’s cause for celebration and he plans to go to Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh to try his luck at the sportsbook there. He adds he and his wife already plan to sign up for next season’s Pro Pick’em contest.
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