Canelo closes gap on Triple G; books lose on Derby winner

Heavy action on underdog Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. drove his price down from plus 600 to plus 330 before his fight against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena. But Alvarez never had a doubt that he’d defeat the son of a Mexican boxing legend.

After winning every round en route to a dominant 12-round unanimous decision, Alvarez and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin announced their Sept. 16 megafight inside the ring.

Las Vegas sports books quickly posted odds on the middleweight bout, with Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs) a minus-160 favorite and Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs) the plus 140 ‘dog.

“Triple G deserves to be the favorite. You can’t put a lot of stock in (Alvarez’s) fight against Chavez. I think (Chavez is) horrible. Always have his whole career,” Wynn sports book director Johnny Avello said. “When he fights someone decent, he shows he’s not a good fighter. He’s not even a speck of his old man.

“That fight’s going to make Canelo look a little better than he really is. He’s good, but that might take the price down a little more. I think Canelo’s got his hands full.”

In May 2016, Station Casinos posted odds on a potential Alvarez-Golovkin bout and the Kazakh knockout specialist opened as a minus-400 favorite. But all bets were off when the fight didn’t take place by Dec. 31st. Golovkin has since shown signs of vulnerability as he saw his 23-fight knockout streak end in a March 19 decision over Daniel Jacobs.

“I can’t tell you how impressed I’ve been with Alvarez over the last year and Golovkin had to go the distance in his last fight. I think the gap has narrowed some,” Sunset Station sports book director Chuck Esposito said. “It wouldn’t suprise me to see that price drop.”

Also, Golovkin is 35 and Alvarez will turn 27 in July.

“(Golovkin) being 35, sometimes boxers hit that age and things change quickly,” Westgate sports book manager Jeff Sherman said. “We saw that with Roy Jones. He was at the top of his game, then he dropped off quickly.”

Derby a bad dream for books

For the fifth straight year, the favorite won the Kentucky Derby. But Always Dreaming, who went off as the 9-2 chalk Saturday before winning at Churchill Downs, was available as a 200-1 long shot at the books from November through January.

A William Hill bettor wagered $100 on the horse at 200-1 odds and won $20,000. The Westgate lost on the Derby because of futures bets on Always Dreaming and Avello said the Wynn also took a hit on futures on the No. 5 horse, which generated “well over five figures” in bets ranging from 200-1 to 9-2.

“We took a lot of big bets at every price imaginable,” said Avello, who added he was surprised a favorite won again.

“It’s kind of getting boring for me,” he said. “A 20-horse field with off tracks and the race the last five years plays to form. The best horse won for the conditions.”

Always Dreaming for Triple Crown?

No is the minus-450 favorite and yes is the plus 350 ‘dog on Always Dreaming to win the Preakness and Belmont to become only the second horse since 1978 to win the Triple Crown.

“No,” Avello said. “He’s a good horse. He may win the Preakness but he won’t win the Belmont because with that running style somebody good will be lurking close.

“He’s got a chance for the Preakness. The field is rather weak. With the shorter distance and tighter turns, he can win that one, too.”

Large wager on Warriors

A bettor at the Westgate wagered $50,000 to win $500 on the Warriors (minus-10,000) to beat the Jazz in their NBA playoff series.

“Even on the games themselves, a lot of people are shifting away from handicapping the spread and betting more on the money line and money-line parlays,” Sherman said. “That’s becoming more of what our decisions are.”

Follow all of our sports betting coverage online at and @RJ_Sports on Twitter.

Contact reporter Todd Dewey at or 702-266-6080. Follow @tdewey33 on Twitter.

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