GAMBLING GUIDE

Jerry Bo's Bookie Busters World Cup Final: One more time, we’re going to celebrate

Croatia is a surprise finalist. Dan Mullan/Getty Images

One more time to fight, Let's celebrate

Growing up, I remember past films ending with the words "The End," in some cases the screen would read "Fin."

While some would say this film has reached its climax, Sunday allows us 90 more minutes (or in Croatia's trends 120), to enjoy the bright green colors of the pitch and the vibrant shades of flags from diverse nations in the crowd. Sunday, in front of the universe, aficionadi of sport - not just futbol, but those that love a good war - will witness blood, sweat, and tears.

France: A 7-1 pre-tournament favorite, France comes into the final as arguably the best team in the competition from top to bottom and certainly the most expensive with over a $1.2 billion  payroll. Les Bleus have managed to win one title in their national team's history, and that came in 1998 on home soil. Current Manager Didier Deschamps captained the French over Brazil on July 12, 1998, to their first and only World Cup title.

Croatia: Some like to use the term Cinderella after being priced at 33-1; I tend to lean on the phrase, "A team of destiny."  Fighting for the 4,164,783 citizens back home, the hopes and aspirations lie on the foot of phenom Luka Modrić. A team that thrived on being disrespected by English pundits in the semifinal will take the pitch once again as underdogs.

Lights, camera ACTION

The world's most significant sporting event brings out the pocketbook of even the tightest character. For a unit of measure, soccer's other prominent event, the Champions League Final, receives about 6% more action in terms of wager size on the Final match compared to other games in the competition.

The World Cup sees a giant spike in numbers when it narrows down to the final. Figures indicate a 26% jump compared to other games during the month-long tournament. Also, the wager sizes are 17% larger than those that we see in the Champions League Final.

It's estimated that almost 80% of bettors in the World Cup final didn't wager on any other previous match in the tournament, showing us that even the most casual of fans like to get some money in on the last game.

As far as the teams involved, The difference in payouts is $10 million as the Champions will be receiving $38 million and the runner-up $28 million The payouts for the World Cup have seen a steady increase since 2002, where at that time the total payouts were $154 million. In 2018, an estimated $400 million will be paid out to the participating 32 countries.

England vs Belgium

England    +234 +.5   -132
Belgium    +121
Draw           +273
Over
Under       3 -119

3rd place winner
England    +140
Belgium   -155

Croatia vs France

Croatia   +409
France    -108 -.5 -108
Over
Under   2 -122

Champion
Croatia -185
France -210

Picks

France Regular time    MAX
France Champion 1 U
Kylian Mbappé Golden Ball 2U
Kylian Mbappé Scores goal   2U
Ngolo Kante  Golden Ball   1/2 Unit +2000
Halftime-Fulltime Draw/ France   +330 1U

The End

For any questions or comments reach me @JerryBoknowz on Twitter.

 

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
Watson's accusers appeared on Real Sports on Tuesday night. Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images.

HBO Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel’s heavily promoted and much anticipated examination of Deshaun Watson’s legal mess involving alleged sexual misconduct shed little new light and merely presented a summary of well worn he said/she (x22) said accusations and denials.

The episode debuted Tuesday night on the premium cable service and will be repeated dozens of times throughout the week on HBO’s platforms. Check your local listings for times and channel.

The segment was hosted by Soledad O’Brien who presented compelling face-to-face interviews with two of the quarterback’s accusers: massage therapists Ashley Solis and Kyla Hayes. Their stories were detailed and graphic. Both cried during the interviews.

Solis: “As I’m working, he deliberately grabs himself and put his penis on my hand. I pulled my hand away instantly and I started crying. I told that I’m done. I don’t want to do this anymore.”

Solis said she felt threatened when Watson, before leaving the session, allegedly told her: “I know you have a career to protect, and I know that you don’t want anyone messing with it, just like I don’t want anyone messing with mine.”

Solis added, “That’s when I got really scared because that sounded like a threat to me.”

Hayes: “He wanted me to kind of make a V motion in his pelvic area. I just kept massaging and did what he asked, until his penis kept touching me repeatedly as I did it.”

Hayes said that Watson had an orgasm, which she said was “mortifying, embarrassing and disgusting.”

O’Brien asked Hayes why she continued to have contact via email with Watson after their encounter.

Hayes: "I wasn't sure what he was capable of. He could've physically assaulted me. He could've bashed my business, so I had to protect myself and my business the best way I saw fit. Did I ever see him again after that? No. Did I give him the runaround? Yes."

O’Brien pointed out that two separate grand juries in Texas heard criminal accusations against Watson and neither found enough evidence to indict him.

Solis and Hayes, and 20 other massage therapists have filed civil suits against Watson. The cases aren’t expected to reach a courtroom until next March. Both sides could reach a settlement before then which would effectively shut down any legal action against Watson. However, both sides say they aren’t interested in any pretrial settlements. That’s what they say now, anyway.

After being banished to the sidelines for the 2021 season by the Houston Texans, Watson signed a historic, 5-year fully guaranteed $230 million contract with the Cleveland Browns.

Hayes said she feels Watson “is being rewarded for bad behavior." Solis said, "It's just like a big screw you. That's what it feels like. That we (the Browns) don't care. He can run and throw, and that's what we care about.”

Watson currently is participating in preseason workouts with the Browns and, at the moment, is cleared to play the upcoming NFL season.

That is unless the NFL suspends Watson for some, most or all of the 2022 season. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has said the league is nearing completion of its independent investigation into Watson’s case and will reach a decision “shortly,” probably this summer. The NFL and NFL Players Association mutually agreed to have former U.S. District Judge Sue Robinson decide whether or not Watson violated the league’s Personal Conduct Policy and what discipline should be handed down if he did.

The Browns are scheduled to play the Texans on Dec. 4 at NRG Stadium in Houston.

O’Brien said, while producing the Real Sports piece, she tried to interview Watson, his attorneys and the Cleveland Browns for their side of the story. All declined.

During a press conference in March to announce his joining the Browns, Watson denied any inappropriate behavior with the massage therapists.

Watson: “I never assaulted any woman. I’ve never disrespected any woman. I was raised to be genuine and respect everyone around me. I’ve never done the thing that these people are alleging. My mom and my aunties didn’t raise me that way.”

Leah Graham, a member of Watson’s legal team, sat for an interview after O’Brien’s segment was complete.

Graham: "It's 22 women. It's one lawyer. There's only one lawyer who was willing to take these cases. And as we know from Ashley Solis’ deposition, Mr. (Houston attorney Tony) Buzbee was not the first, probably not the second or third lawyer she went to, but he was the only one to take her case. Why? Not because it had merit, but because he would use these cases to increase his social media following and quite frankly to get on shows like this one.”

My reaction after watching the Real Sports segment? We weren’t in the room when the massage therapists worked on Watson. We weren’t in the grand jury room when evidence against Watson was presented. We don’t know what happened. We don’t know what will happen if these cases go to trial.

Until then all we have is one big, lurid, embarrassing mess. In American courtrooms, defendants are presumed innocent. That’s often the opposite in the court of public opinion. We’ll just have to wait while the wheels of justice grind painfully slow.

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome