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CNBC bets on Las Vegas ‘sports consulting agency’


If the saying “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” doesn’t run through your mind while watching the new series “Money Talks” (10 p.m. Wednesday, CNBC), well, you’re just the type of person Steve Stevens is looking for.

“I’m not a bookie. I’m a bookie killer,” boasts Stevens, owner of the Las Vegas-based “sports consulting agency” VIP Sports.

Basically, he and his staff will supply bettors with sports picks, either by selling them outright as part of “investment packages” or by taking 40- to 50-percent commissions on winners.

The VIP staffers will go through 300 names to land two or three new customers, and the process is depicted as a constant churn.

His top salespeople, like Chris “Mother(expletive)-in’ ” Pirelli are shown dropping 15 grand on a watch at The Jewelers of Las Vegas and boasting of a life of strippers, jet skis and “poppin’ bottles.” (Do people still pop bottles? Really??)

His least successful employees are shown in a competition to avoid having to come to work in a silly costume.

The whole thing feels like “The Wolf of Wall Street” meets Towbin Dodge’s “The Chopper Show.”

“Don’t call and waste my time” for bets of $2,000 or $3,000, says Stevens, aka Darin Notaro. And if you’re curious about just exactly whom you’d be buying these picks from, Google “Darin Notaro,” “fraud” and “prison.”

“Money Talks” was filmed so long ago that when Stevens/Notaro advises a client to fork over $11,000 on the Dodgers to win the first game of last year’s NLCS, it takes some of the suspense out of it for anyone who follows baseball.

But that’s nothing compared to the dirty feeling that will wash over you as the “Money Talks” team badgers clients into wagering more money than they’re comfortable with.

“His biggest problem,” Pirelli says of one client, “is he has no balls.”

It’s enough to make you wonder, if earning millions of dollars by wagering on sports is so easy, why are they selling these picks and not just wagering themselves?