Sportsbooks Anticipate Big Betting Weekend

By Kevin Johnson

Published 06/08 2012 09:10PM

Updated 06/08 2012 11:00PM

LAS VEGAS - Thousands of boxing fans are in Las Vegas to watch and bet on the battle between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley at MGM Grand this weekend.

"Let's see a good fight. Boxing needs a good fight. It's a really good sport if you ask me. I think MMA is taking over a little bit of their show," said tourist Tom McIntosh.

"I brought a thousand bucks. I'll lose that, and then I don't know what I'll put on the credit card. I gotta' eat, entertain yourself," said tourist Mike Pollock.

McIntosh and Pollock will be betting on the Pacquiao-Bradley fight, but they initially came to Las Vegas for the Belmont Stakes. The horse race would have featured potential Triple Crown hopeful I'll Have Another, but trainers pulled the horse from the race because of a tendon injury.

"That should hurt a little bit, but I think overall it's still a very big weekend for us," said LVH Sports Book Director Jay Kornegay.

Kornegay says there are still plenty of sporting events for bettors to choose from this weekend.

"This time of year, usually pretty quiet in here, but with the crowds that EDC brought in and some of the special events we're having this weekend, you can certainly see the extra bodies that are in the book this weekend," he said.

In addition to the Pacquiao-Bradley fight and the Belmont Stakes, the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics meet in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Los Angeles Kings and the New Jersey Devils also face off Saturday in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

"I'm gonna' go with the Heat. I'm gonna' go with the Heat this weekend," said McIntosh said.

The Las Vegas economy may be the real winner, getting a welcome summer jolt as locals and visitors put their money on the line.

"The way I look at it, by betting money line, I have a fifty-fifty chance. The team's either gonna' win or it's gonna' lose," said bettor Rhoeshon Dillard.

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