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Early money on favorite ‘Canelo’ Alvarez over Daniel Jacobs

Sports fans and bettors certainly won’t lack for action in Las Vegas on a Saturday that will showcase the Kentucky Derby and NBA and NHL playoff games and capped by a title fight at T-Mobile Arena.

It doesn’t have the allure of Saul “Canelo” Alvarez’s last two bouts against Gennady “Triple G” Golovkin. But Alvarez’s middleweight unification title fight Saturday against Daniel Jacobs is generating plenty of action at Las Vegas sportsbooks.

Most of the early money has been on Alvarez, who has been bet up to a minus 500 favorite after opening as low as minus 330.

“We’re getting a ton of play on the favorite,” CG Technology sportsbook director Tony DiTommaso said.

The early money also has been heavy on Alvarez (51-1-2, 35 knockouts) at Caesars Entertainment and Station Casinos sportsbooks.

“People have been laying pretty big money on Alvarez,” The Linq Hotel sportsbook director John Lukasik said. “We’ve had a lot of five-figure bets on him.”

The Westgate also has taken multiple five-figure wagers on Alvarez, along with a $10,000 wager to win $37,500 on Jacobs at plus 375.

Another Westgate gambler wagered $24,000 to win $10,000 on over 10½ rounds at minus 240.

“Right now, our best case is Jacobs and under 10½ rounds. We’re certainly rooting for a knockout at the moment,” Westgate sportsbook director John Murray said Friday afternoon. “But a good percentage of the handle on the fight will come in between now and (Saturday) night.”

Murray might be pulling for Jacobs (35-2, 29 KOs) to win, but he expects Alvarez to prevail.

“I have a lot of respect for Danny Jacobs, but Canelo is in a different class,” Murray said. “Jacobs is a lot bigger than Canelo, and Jacobs probably won two years ago when he fought Triple G. It was a bad decision by the judges. But Canelo is getting better every time he fights, and he’s getting bigger and stronger every time he fights.”

MGM Resorts sportsbook director Jay Rood said his books probably will need Alvarez because of the big plus price on the underdog, and Sunset Station sportsbook director Chuck Esposito said Jacobs probably will have the edge in ticket count for the same reason.

“Bettors know in boxing one punch can change everything,” Esposito said. “I think it will be a competitive fight. And any time you’ve got a big fight in town on Cinco de Mayo and Kentucky Derby weekend, it just adds to the overall atmosphere and action at the books.

“Canelo has become the guy. He’s a huge draw.”

Contact reporter Todd Dewey at tdewey@reviewjournal.com. Follow @tdewey33 on Twitter.

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