‘American Idol’ odds-maker says it’s sayonara Syesha Mercado


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Nobody wants to miss out on the fun of “American Idol,” least of all the Vegas odds-makers. That’s why Johnny Avello, director of the Race and Sports Book at Wynn Las Vegas, has come out with his own predictions for the fates of the top four.

According to Avello, David Archuleta is leading the race, with odds of 6 to 5, David Cook is trailing Archuleta, with 3-to-2 odds, and Jason Castro follows, with 10 to 1 odds. The last woman standing, Syesha Mercado, has the weakest chance of winning, with odds of 12 to 1.


Avello is proud of his “Idol” predictions thus far. He’s been at it since the first season, and he’s never far off. “The only real surprise was Taylor Hicks,” confessed Avello.

As for this season, Avello said, “if there’s a surprise for me, it’s David [Cook] so far. I had him down in the ninth spot.”

Hooked on horse racing since age 5 and naturally gifted with numbers, making odds came easily to Avello. When he’s not toiling over the fates of the two Davids, Avello is making odds for sporting events, award shows, horse races and other reality shows, such as “Survivor.” He even chats with Us Weekly about the odds that various Hollywood couples will get hitched.

For Avello, watching “Idol” is all in a day’s work, but that doesn’t mean he’s not a fan. “My favorite is David Archuleta,” declared Avello. “He doesn’t make mistakes, he’s always on key and his arrangements are good.”

Who knew Archuleta was scoring with the Vegas odds-maker demographic?

-- Stephanie Lysaght