Nevada Casino Owner Loses Out on $1 Million March Madness Payday


Derek Stevens is the owner of two Las Vegas casinos who was hoping to see his alma mater, the Michigan Wolverines, earn the first place win during March Madness. With a $12,500 bet in place, Stevens stood to earn a $1 million payday if the team was able to outlast the competition and earn the win. Unfortunately, Michigan was not able to defeat Oregon and was eliminated from the tournament, with Stevens unable to earn the big payday.

Michigan was the number seven seed in the tournament and has already upset Louisville then set out to play Oregon in the next round. The game would be a nail biter with Michigan losing by just one point with a final score of 69-68, Oregon moving up in the competition.

The big wager by Stevens was approved by the owner of the Golden Nugget Tilman Fertitta, who stood to lose a massive amount of cash if Michigan won. When he placed the bet, Stevens posted a photo of his ticket on Twitter, with Fertitta commenting “Should be fun my friend!”

Fertitta doesn’t have to worry now if he will have to pay up the $1 million with Michigan being eliminated from the competition. While Fertitta is probably celebrating, Stevens is not. This is not the first time that Stevens has wagered big money on Michigan or placed big money on March Madness. Two years ago he wagered $20,000 on the Spartans and when this year’s March Madness began, he placed a wager of $11,000 each on all the 32 first round games. Once the opening round was complete, Stevens was down $109,000.

The March Madness action continues today with Butler taking on North Carolina, South Carolina vs Baylor, UCLA against Kentucky and Wisconsin taking on Florida. Sweet 16 action can be seen tonight and into the weekend, and while most of us will be tuning in and watching, Stevens might be taking a break for a while, trying to get over the hurt of losing out on $1 million!

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