In this photo provided by the Las Vegas News Bureau, fireworks burst over the Las Vegas Strip at midnight on New Year's 2011, as seen from Trump International Hotel. (AP Photo/Las Vegas News Bureau, Brian Jones)
Pittsburgh Steelers’ fans weren’t the only one dismayed by the outcome of the Super Bowl last Sunday.
Due to a high final score and a six-point margin of victory by the favored Green Bay Packers over the Steelers--along with any number of lucky breaks for bettors-- bookmakers in Las Vegas took a major hit, with some calling the game the worst they’ve seen in terms of the house losing money.
The Steelers came in as 2.5 point underdogs as Vegas continued its postseason-long romance with the Pack, and, obviously, they didn’t cover; the over-under of 45, too, was far eclipsed by the Packers and Steelers, who combined to score 56 points.
Rood recalled receiving a phone call at halftime from his boss Bill McBaeth. "What's the worse-case scenario?" McBaeth said. Rood answered, "It's happening."
Things looked up for a short time after half, when Rashard Mendenhall opened the third quarter with a touchdown, to bring the Steelers to within four points. After the teams traded touchdowns, and the Steelers converted a two-point attempt, the deficit became three, but it would be the closest Pittsburgh got to covering.
Mason Crosby's fourth quarter field goal extended the Green Bay lead to 31-25, which stood as the final score, and sealed the fate of Vegas bookmakers like Rood.
"The combination of the 'over' and the Packers' victory was lethal," Rood said. "It's the worst Super Bowl I've seen since being here in 1993. There was no getting around it. Not a great scenario."