This is not a piece about the Miami Heat winning the NBA championship in six games, which they will, rather, it's a reminder that all of us should really be in Vegas watching that series, and the Stanley Cup, play out. You see, regardless of the triple digit temperatures that litter the forecasts in the desert now through September, The Entertainment Capital OF The World continues to be just that, and there is no better place than to escape those brutal temperatures than in cooling comfort of your hotel and casino's sports book.

That's right, when you've finally had your fill of 24 ounce Coors Lights at the pool, you might as well take your sunburned body into the air conditioned comfort of the laid back sports book to cool down for the rest of the afternoon.  After all, the sports books have cocktail waitresses too, and while they may or may not be up to the caliber of those parading poolside, nevertheless they will deliver your favorite concoction in a timely manner, just make sure you have some action in the book.

The Vegas books in the summertime resemble a refuge from the madness of football and basketball season, and this means multiple benefits for the sports fanatic staring at a board full of horse races and baseball games.  Especially this time of year, and especially this weekend, when the perfect storm materializes; the NBA Finals, the Stanley Cup (maybe), and the US Open. Add to that mix the daily diet of MLB match ups, and believe me, there is plenty to capture your imagination before you head out into 110 degree sunshine and desert blue skies.

I have been there before for the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont too, and the crowds jamming those Triple Crown events are as close to being on the rail as you can imagine. However, in the summertime at the books, you can roll out of bed, stroll down to the book, grab your forms, a Bloody Mary and plop yourself down to plot your strategy for the remainder of the day. Baseball is the quintessential game to wager on. Pick a handful of games, place your bets, and check back in at the end of the day, or even better yet, the next day, to log your results. Take your newspaper poolside, study the match ups for the next day, maybe even check in on the ponies, it's all waiting for you and there is absolutely no rush to get to it anytime soon.

But despite the monumental gambling revenue that college and pro football and basketball seasons generate in Vegas, along with all the publicity its staggering wagering numbers receive, the sports books in Vegas are a great escape if you find yourself there in the months of May through August. Take your pick from an extensive quality list; the Plaza, the Nugget, LVH, Hard Rock, Lagasse's, the Venetian, Wynn, Mandalay Bay, The Mirage, the Palms; they all have their strengths and they all are a comfortable, soothing resort from the madness swirling around you 24-7.  

The temps may read 113 on your limo's rear view mirror, but the next time you find yourself in Sin City in the summer, be sure to check in at your nearest sports book for a real vacation.  I will, in August, just 72 days from now, but who's counting. The heat is on.

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