Industry loses veteran linesmaker, Fernando

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Fernando, who was only in his mid 50s, was best known by players for his years as Lines Director at Hollywood Sportsbook. Fernando was a talented line manager who first gained notoriety for his exceptional ability to set NHL opening odds. He worked with Hollywood for years until the sportsbook was sold to the Group in May of 2006. At its peak Hollywood was an A+ sportsbook that, under Fernando, was one of the few sportsbooks to join Pinnacle Sports (SBR rating A+) offering reduced juice.  Fernando was a line manager at BetPhoenix at the time of his passing. He reportedly suffered from a heart attack Saturday. We at SBR send our condolences to Fernando's friends and family.

SBR Interviews Fernando: Part 1 Excerpt

SBR Bill Dozer : Fernando, would you be able to share any crazy or funny anecdotes from ‘way back in the day’? Do you have any interesting stories from your early booking days or since then?
: For sure, I remember one year during a hockey playoff game… We had 3 partners and we had a $10,000 decision on a hockey game… I was sweating up the whole room… my partner told me I was stinking up the whole room…(laughs) and I was sweating it out… pacing the floors… Funny enough, the year after, during the hockey playoffs I had a $30,000 decision and we were losing and there I was laughing!!!

That just shows from year to year how things can change… so it’s like this year, you are sweating like crazy on 10K and then you’re losing for $30,000 and you’re laughing the next year…

SBR Interviews Fernando
: Part 2 Excerpt
SBR Bill Dozer: What do you think about the prospect of managing a 10 cent line on a football game?
: Oh, it will make it tougher to move a number. One wouldn’t be able to move numbers; you’d just move the money (juice or money lines)… If it gets to be that way, that’s what’s gonna happen... We’d just move the money and the number would always be the same. You wouldn’t be able to move the numbers because the risk factor of getting sided would be too high.

SBR Interviews Fernando
: Part 3 Excerpt

SBR Bill Dozer: I have some more questions pertaining to the “mighty 107”…Have you had a change in professional action since Hollywood entered the reduced juice market? Maybe more people looking for line shopping and the scalpers, more value shoppers?
Fernando: Oh yeah, when we started offering $1.07, we got a lot of customers that signed up for the reduced juice program and a lot of them are professionals, but if you are scalping and you are laying $1.07, your odds as a player gets better. (In the sports-betting industry, "scalpers" or "middlers" are the names assigned to those players who arbitrage. Arbitraging is the practice of purchasing securities on one market -in this case, a line offered by one sportsbook- for immediate resale on another market -in this case, offsetting the number using a different line posted by another sportsbook- in order to profit from a price discrepancy*)

Say for instance, if you were laying $1.10 on both sides and trying to catch a middle, you might be getting 20-to-1 odds on your bet. But now, if you’re playing a middle and you are laying $1.07 on a side, now your odds are much better than that; because now you are going to get 28.5-to-1 odds on your middle; instead of only getting 20-to-1, just by laying $1.07. That’s just to show you how strong laying $1.07 is.

Let me explain further: If you were playing to hit a "middle", say 3 ½ and 4 ½ in a football game and laying $1.10; if you were to hit that bed, you would be getting 20 to 1 odds. By laying $1.07 -playing the same middle- your odds to win money improve significantly; you are now getting 28.5-to-1 odds on your middle. That’s much better. So that’s what I’m saying. So for people who bet middles, laying $1.07 is terrific. It just builds their odds up better and for them to make money, they don’t have to hit it one out of every 20 times. They can hit it one out of every 27 times and they will make some money. So they have more chances to play middles, and better value for them.

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