The Popcorn Stand: VICE on this vice (gambling) was fascinating

I’ve become infatuated with this new network, VICE (I don’t even know if that’s what it’s called, it might be VICELAND), and one of its shows, VICE Sports (again don’t know if that’s the actual title). It’s a half hour documentary in my opinion that rivals HBO’s Real Sports.

That’s saying a lot since I believe Real Sports is the best news show on television. Not just best sports show. Best news show. Although I admit I haven’t had HBO for a while, so I haven’t watched Real Sports in a few years.

The VICE sports show is hosted by Selema Masekela, who was known as Sal when he did the X Games on ESPN. (It’s amazing how many ESPN announcers go on to do better things. There’s my cheap shot at ESPN).

Anyway, one of the documentaries was on sports gambling and it was fascinating. I found it ironic opponents to the effort to legalize sports betting in New Jersey were using many of the same kinds of arguments opponents to legalizing marijuana in Nevada have been using. Increased crime, ruined lives, etc.

Of course, there were the requisite “gambling experts” who were interviewed and whenever I see these “gambling experts,” I always ask, if they’re so good at what they do why do they have to work for a living?

I’ve always wanted to start my own tipline, 1-800-YUCHUMP (don’t call it, the last time I checked it was actually a real number). For $3.95 a minute (and I speak very slooooowly), I can give you my “lock of the week.”

Sports gambling is like anything else. There’s moralizing. Hypocrisy. But one way or another, we all seem to be part of the action.

— Charles Whisnand


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