JUDD: Here’s to hoping my first sports wager was a successful one


2:15 pm EST, Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Recently, I went out and something that would be impossible a few months ago and unthinkable a few years ago.

Yes, that’s right, I placed my first ever (legal) sports bet at Firekeepers Casino down in my hometown of Battle Creek this past weekend.

It was such a strange experience but an exciting experience.

My interest was piqued ever since it was decided that Michigan would be the next state to open sports-betting windows in casinos and allow residents to place bets on events virtually via apps like FanDuel and DraftKings.

The only thing is, I truly had no clue what I was doing or even where to begin when it came to placing my first wager.

For someone who’s not at all familiar with the process, it can get overwhelming rather quickly when confronted with all of the flashing numbers, televisions and degenerate gamblers who probably should’ve been out of the game years ago.

Luckily for me, I had the option of going up to the window and talking to the teller like he’s a barista at Starbucks, or I could have taken my time using one of the many conveniently located betting kiosks.

Of course, I chose to do the latter, and my wife and I made our way to an open kiosk — right at the end of the long row of machines.

I was blown away; scrolling through all the events one could place a wager on, I kept telling my wife over the roar of the casino: “I can’t believe you can bet on that!”

Literally any game in any sport in pretty much any country, as long as it had a betting line on it was fair game, including live and ongoing events.

With an array of basketball and hockey games being played at that particular time, coupled with the AFC and NFC championship games that were set to take place the following afternoon, I was torn.

But then I quickly decided I didn’t want to put my money on anything happening live or even within the next 24 hours; I wanted to at least do some impromptu research.

On top of that, I don’t watch or follow nearly as much basketball, football or hockey as I used to, so I figured I would stick with what I’ve been most drawn to in recent years: the English Premier League.

You know, the football invented by my ancestors all those years ago on the other side of the pond.

Next step, find a decent match set to kick off sometime in the next week or so and a decent bet to put my money on.

And there it was: Arsenal and Manchester United, Jan. 30 — Gunners and Red Devils, that’s the one.

I’m a fan of neither club, so it was much easier for me to be objective and not let any emotional bias prevent me from placing a solid wager.

So long as the game is tied at halftime and Manchester United goes on to win, yours truly will be one-for-one lifetime in his sports-betting career.

Here goes nothing.

Joe Judd is a reporter for the Pioneer. He can be reached at [email protected]

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