Today April 28, 2014 PinnacleSports.com announced they're now taking your bets on who'll be in the next Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour top eight. With more than 12 million registered players and a movie series by 20th Century Fox on the horizon, the popularity of Magic has never been higher. We caught up with Pinnacle's social media manager Gary Wise, who long time fans of the game may recognize as a member of the Magic: The Gathering Hall of Fame, for an exclusive interview on this exciting new opportunity for those who're legally capable of participating (sorry, United States residents).
"When I think of betting, it's boxing that comes to mind. Certainly not Magic: The Gathering. How did this happen?"
"Not all sports are physical, there's plenty of mental ones too. Why shouldn't you be able to place a bet on them? We have a lot of gamers in our office, and have created offerings on the titles we're really passionate about. We offer markets on popular e-sports such as Star Craft 2, League of Legends, and Dota2. It was only natural for us to create offerings for Magic: The Gathering.
Pinnacle Sports is actually the first company to offer betting for Magic: The Gathering regularly. We've been doing it on and off for the past six years, but it's been very niche. Interest has finally grow to the point were moving forward our users will be able to place their bets on every future Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour and World Championships, beginning with Pro Tour Journey Into Nyx."
So, what exactly can fans bet on? Can I predict who'll win?"
"The odds on a winner pre-tournament would be extremely long. Instead, we offer really simple yes or no markets asking whether specific players will make the top eight. Featured players are highly ranked and/or from notable teams and expected to attend every Pro Tour. There's also over/under bets to choose from such as on the total number of Europeans or North Americans in the top eight, or more card specific questions like the total number of each basic land and the number of temples that'll appear in the top eight.
To give you an idea, Jeremy Dezani has the lowest odds to make top 8 at 6.32, which gives him less than a 16% chance. Typically, his chance of actually winning would be approximately one-eighth of that.
Several other players to bet on include:
- Reid Duke
- Owen Turtenwald
- Ben Stark
- Samuel Black
"Where's Jon Finkel on your list? Afraid of those odds?"
"hehe, we're not afraid of Jon's winning, as the markets will price themselves accordingly, but you've hit the nail on the head. Jon is one of a number of excellent players who can't be relied upon to attend every Pro Tour due to other interests. We've kept our player offerings to those who you "know" (as much as you can) will be there."
"What if I want to bet on something else?"
"We're more than happy to take suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org, and if we feel that there's enough market interest we may feature it."
"Is there anything else you'd like to add?"
Pinnacle Sports is very excited about the continued growth of Magic: the Gathering and mental sports in general and feel our embracing these offerings contributes to that. We look forward to continuing that relationship and hearing from bettors on how we can improve our offerings.
For more information about the game, visit www.MagicTheGathering.com.