Published Monday, Nov. 2, 2015 | 11:24 a.m.
Updated Monday, Nov. 2, 2015 | 1:33 p.m.
When the Kansas City Royals became World Series champions early this morning against the New York Mets in New York, sports bettor Dave Oancea, aka Vegas Dave, made history, and this morning he’ll be at Westgate Las Vegas to collect his $2.5 million win.
It’s an actual $2,457,200 payoff from his $100,000 bet for the largest future bet in the history of sports betting, and his winnings have prompted Westgate to change its policy on accepting his bets. It likely also will change the way casinos do sports betting in no longer accepting extreme odds or allowing repeat bets.
Vegas Dave placed his bet in Week 1 when the odds were 30-1 and bet it all the way down to 8-1, as the Royals hadn’t won a World Series in 30 years. Declining opportunities to cash out and make a guaranteed $750,000, Vegas Dave showed his faith in the MLB team by letting the bet ride.
Here’s a YouTube video of all his tickets to prove it:
It wasn’t the only winning bet he’s made from baseball this season. Incredibly, he hit two round robins this year, one at $250,000 and another one at more than $400,000.
Said Vegas Dave in a news release: “I cashed out my biggest payday of my career when I predicted the Texas Rangers to win the AL West at the all-star break when they were 10 games back. They had a .05 percent chance of doing this, and it got done. That payout paid me out $580,000. All my wagers I post online at ItsVegasDave.com to shut up any of the doubters and to establish credibility.
“I believed in K.C. I saw something that the so-called experts didn’t see in Week 1 when the were picked to finish at the bottom of the division. They were +3,000 odds! I was right, they were wrong, as K.C. ended up having the best overall record in the AL. They had home field throughout the playoffs and the World Series. … But bottom line the deciding factor of why I believed K.C. would win was the bullpen.”
Vegas Dave had dugout seats for the final playoff game against Houston:
“It made me realize how good this K.C. team is. I watched that dugout during and between innings. I have never seen so many calm and cool players in my life. They are never out of the game. They believe in one another. They have depth in the pen, and not just in the lineup.”
“K.C. is a team of destiny. … I believed in this team when no one else did and still do. Not to mention the city of Kansas City needs this. K.C. winning the World Series will bring excitement to that city. The city needs this crown.
“A $2.5 million payout off a $100,000 future bet is the biggest future bet cashed in the history of sports betting. I will be forever remembered for this worldwide. … I have been wrong many times in my 15-year, sports-betting career, but most of the time I’m right. I hoped to be right again most of all for my parents. I promised them to buy them their dream home if this ticket cashed.”
Vegas Dave, per his website, says that he started his gambling career in Las Vegas 15 years ago after moving from Honolulu in pursuit of “making it big” in Sin City. After years of weathering major wins, devastating losses and even a two-month stint in Gamblers Anonymous, Vegas Dave eventually learned the discipline needed to stay successful as a professional gambler.
Today, Vegas Dave is regarded as one of the elite sports handicappers of this era. He regularly wagers high-stakes bets from $100,000 to $200,000 per week on sporting events. He also consults for approximately 2,500 people on their bets. With the financial freedom he’s achieved through his gambling career, Vegas Dave is living his dream in his adopted hometown of Las Vegas.
Vegas Vegas Dave’s passionate, no-nonsense approach, along with actual postings of his tickets on his website, validate his credibility as one of the most successful sports bettors of his time.
And just what’s he going to do with some of the other winnings after he buys his parents a new home? He plans to give back to his community by donating turkeys and toys to underprivileged Las Vegas residents during the holidays.
Updated at 11:53 a.m.: Before he set out this morning to collect his winnings, Vegas Dave told me: “I’m feeling pretty numb over this. But I’m a gambler, so it goes back to being a normal day — it’s just the numbers are bigger!
“I had to stay up all night Saturday before last night’s game. Never went to sleep. I went to Hakkasan and partied pretty hard. No way I could sleep, so when the game started, I was pretty wasted. Then the adrenaline kicked in. I’m just happy to make it through the end.
“The great thing is that I have 2,500 followers, so 1,500 of them cash in winnings, too. The bad thing is that now the Westgate won’t take my bets anymore. I’m 52 for 1 this year and 125 for 3 the last three seasons.
“The total bets were spread across seven casinos, including the Wynn, the Mirage and Tuscany. They offered me a guaranteed million to cash out early, but I just let it ride. It was meant to be. We will never have this experience in baseball again. I have a great understanding of baseball, and this was destiny for the Kansas City Royals to win. Look at what they overcame to win.
“I was at rock bottom a few years ago. My parents weren’t proud of me. I wasn’t proud of me, either. I’d lost their savings, but they never stopped believing in me. So last week they were wearing Kansas City hats and T-shirts, and my dad watched the games with me. Next week, we go looking for houses because I promised them a new one.
“This will be my best year to date. My biggest win to date was a month ago with $580,000. The IRS won’t have to follow me to the casino cages. I pay my taxes, and I have some losses to offset, but I’m way ahead.”
Vegas Dave, who follows sports on 17 TV sets at his home, said he began his passion for baseball as a 12-year-old selling and trading baseball cards: “I was a real little hustler.” He told me that he sticks to sports bets with baseball and NFL games but prefers college football. “Definitely no basketball bets,” he laughed.
He admits to going to Gamblers Anonymous several years ago, and I asked him what it taught him. “I drained my parents’ accounts, so I had to go, but I was in the meetings and watching my winnings,” he said.
“It taught me money management and discipline so I don’t need the action on a daily or weekly basis. I can go a while without making bets. Betting the way I do, it is 50 percent management and discipline and 50 percent skill and luck. I play to win, not to lose.”
Robin Leach of “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” fame has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past 15 years giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Las Vegas Sun Entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.