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Dykstra: IGT's Options Are No Gamble

Calls in this gambling company put money on the table.

Gambling's all about rolling the dice, but a trade on the biggest name in the gambling industry is no gamble at all.

International Game Technology

(IGT) - Get International Game Technology PLC Report

, the world's largest manufacturer of casino gaming machines, garners half its revenue from selling slot machines, and it is the biggest and best company in this sector.

Reno, Nev.-based IGT is a clear pioneer and leader in the industry. It created video poker machines back in the 1970s; this was a major turning point in the gaming revolution because of the transformation from an electro-mechanical device to a microprocessor-driven game.

It hasn't lost its edge: It still has some of the most popular gaming machines in the casino industry. Of the 10 most popular games with gamblers, IGT games hold nine slots. The company also delivers the most profitable games, with nine of the top-10-earning poker games in the U.S.

It also supplies video lottery terminals, monitoring and control systems, and the spinning reel machines to government-sponsored gaming locations in Canada and select racetracks in the U.S. And on May 1, IGT teamed up with China's LotSynergy Holdings Limited to form a strategic alliance through a subscription and "technical cooperation" agreement.

The gambling industry is "protected," in that the public just cannot stop gambling. So for the combination of all these reasons, IGT is my deep-in-the-money call for today. I have an order in to buy 10 of the October 30 DITM calls, paying $8.90 or better. Once again, it is important to stick with limit orders and not chase trades. IGT closed at $38.56 Monday.

Game of Life

So Mother's Day has come and gone, and families around the country celebrated their lead-off batters and creators: their mothers.

Vases upon vases of beautiful flowers were delivered to doorsteps, special packages of chocolates were prepared, and cards were almost completely swept off the store shelves by the day's end. (Too bad for those procrastinators who had to settle for those glitzy cards that didn't even have a matching envelope!)

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Interestingly, even the tough guys celebrate the sweet loving holiday. Before Jimmy "The Gent" Burke was incarcerated for the incidents depicted in the well-known movie

Goodfellas

, every Mother's Day he would purchase a bouquet of flowers for each of his imprisoned friends' mothers and personally deliver the generous gifts. How charming.

Some attribute the soft spot to a mother's forte in appealing to the palate. Al Capone, the godfather of godfathers, raved about his mother's spaghetti and meat sauce. Unquestionably, his presence didn't require a dinner reservation, but why go out when the best of the best is on your own kitchen table? No doubt about it, I can attest that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.

Moreover, many mothers often turn their heads to the shortcomings of their offspring. On a smaller scale, parents are in denial about many things in life, and we wonder why. They are blinded by the love. When your son comes for dinner every weekend and shows up with a smile and a warm hug, it's often difficult to think anything otherwise!

For families outside the "Family," Mother's Day is just as important. The Race for the Cure, a walk for breast cancer, is held every Mother's Day. Traffic stops as pink shirts, bandannas and ribbons flood the streets.

Most importantly, however, is simply sharing the day with the ones you love. No fancy dinner is necessary, no diamond necklace or shiny new car, but rather a drawing, a phone call or even a card. In the end, it truly is the thought that counts.

Remember: Life is a journey; enjoy the ride!

At the time of publication, Dykstra had no positions in stocks mentioned.

Nicknamed "Nails" for his tough style of play during his Major League Baseball career, Lenny Dykstra was an integral member of the powerful Mets of the mid-1980s, including the world champion 1986 squad, and the Phillies in the early 1990s.

Today, Dykstra manages his own stock portfolio and serves as president of several of his privately held companies, including car washes; a partnership with Castrol in "Team Dykstra" Quick Lube Centers; a state-of-the-art ConocoPhillips fueling facility; a real estate development company; and a new venture to develop several "I Sold It on eBay" stores throughout high-demographic areas of Southern California.