Armadillo: Friday's six-pack
Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal wrote an interesting article, talking about how much alumni of each college basketball program had named in the NBA, since 1985. Here are the top six teams:
6) UConn Huskies $679M—Ray Allen-Hamilton
5) Michigan Wolverines $715M—Webber-Jalen Rose
4) Georgetown Hoyas $727M—Iverson-Mourning-Mutombo
3) Arizona Wildcats $738M—Bibby-Elliott
2) Duke $809M—Grant Hill-Elton Brand
1) North Carolina $853M—Vince Carter/Rasheed Wallace
Armadillo: Friday's List of 13: The best times to be in Las Vegas.......
First of all, there are no bad days to be in Las Vegas. None, not even when its 113 degrees in mid-July (its usually only 98 or 100 after the sun goes down). With that in mind, here are 13 of my favorite times to be in America’s Favorite City:
13) Super Sunday—There is so much gambling going on, almost every play in the Super Bowl causes money to change hands somehow. People bet on the coin toss and the length of the national anthem. For the action junkie, it doesn’t get much better than this.
12) NBA Summer League in July—OK, so its 113 outside, but for $28, you can sit in the Thomas & Mack Center and watch NBA rookies try to impress their new teams all day long, while also getting a chance to talk with celebrities as they enter/leave by same doors you do. Underrated fun. Did I mention its air conditioned?
11) Eating pancakes in a casino coffee shop at 5am— pinnacle of people watching, if you’re into that, and who isn’t? Plus, I’m convinced that food tastes better in the middle of the night.
10) First day of World Match Play golf tournament; Mini-version of March Madness; 64-golfer bracket means 32 matches to invest in on a Wednesday afternoon. Some of these guys no one has heard of, Some of the ones you’ve heard of get upset early on.
Lot of action for a Wednesday in February.
9) Bowling at South Point at 4am, going to the indoor go-kart track, or to the shooting range, all good stuff. I’m a terrible go-kart racer; too cautious.
8) Any weeknight during baseball season—Six hours of baseball goes by quickly in a sportsbook, where the Royals or Pirates get as much attention as the big market teams, as long as a group of guys bet on them. Always fun to figure out which game is involved when you hear random screaming from a corner of the room.
7) Watching World Series of Poker at Rio—Very large room, convention center-size, packed with poker players, with no noise except for poker chips clicking together and the occasional yell of “All In!!!” when someone puts their tournament life on the line.
Not as much fun as on TV, because you can’t see percentages of winning, obviously, but still lot of fun to see once.
6) UNLV basketball—Lot of history in Thomas & Mack Center; Tark the Shark still goes to the games, and the Rebels are good. They have good hot dogs in the arena, too.
5) Any football weekend—13 hours of action on Saturday, 11 more on Sunday. I recommend the South Point for watching football; there was always room when I was there, it wasn’t a ripoff for food/drinks and the people who run the place act like they want you there. Did I mention they sell 75-cent hot dogs?
4) Lounging by the pool at Bally’s—Had never done this before April, but its excellent, very relaxing. Weather in April was perfect for sitting by pool, doing some reading while you lounge in the sun, taking in the sights, and believe me, there are some interesting sights. .
3) Championship Week of college hoop, especially Thursday/Friday: 40-something games on Thursday, a few less on Friday, but every game packed with meaning, as Selection Sunday is only 2-3 days away.
2) New Year’s Eve—I haven’t done this one yet, but they shut down the Strip to traffic for a while, and there are lots of fireworks, even more than usual. Hotel rates are steep, but what better way to bring in a new year?
1) First weekend of NCAA tournament—Its almost too crowded in sportsbooks for this weekend, but again an off-the-strip place like South Point is probably the best idea. This is my favorite weekend of the year, no matter where I am, but if you’re in the desert and can go bowling at 4am after watching the games, its just that much better.