Today, we’re taking a look at the biggest sports bets with crypto. Who won what, and how did they do it?
Answering any question relating to the biggest sports bet is far from straightforward. After all, not many gamblers are comfortable discussing their wins or losses. Celebrity bettors such as Drake tend to be an exception rather than a rule. Indeed, the ultra-wealthy music superstar is known to have placed various six and seven-figure bets with various outcomes.
Notably, Drake (according to certain screenshots) placed his bets on Stake.com, a site known for accepting crypto and fiat currencies. For instance, his unsuccessful $1m wager on Argentina to win the World Cup final in normal time happened on Stake, as did his failed $400,000 bet on Jake Paul to KO Tommy Fury (the influencer was beaten rather easily on points).
It shows that crypto sports betting sites are likelier to accept huge wagers than most fiat counterparts. So, while the biggest bet ever won may have occurred with a ‘traditional’ bookmaker at present, this is likely to change as more punters try their luck with digital currency.
Now, let’s check out both the biggest sports bet win AND the biggest odds bet ever won.
The gambling world is full of high rollers, and we likely won’t know the full extent of their wins and losses. We know that seven-figure wagers are more commonplace than anyone realizes. Indeed, eight-figure bets are placed at private poker tables worldwide.
In general, some of the biggest bets ever won happened at long odds (which we explore later). For instance, James Adducci won around $1.2m after betting $85,000 on Tiger Woods to win the Masters in 2019.
“Vegas” Dave Oancea boldly slapped $140,000 on the table as he believed the Kansas City Royals could win the 2015 MLB World Series. Oancea benefitted from a $2.5m payout when the Royals obliged at good odds.
Billy Walters might have thought he held the unofficial record when he bet $3.5m on the New Orlean Saints to win Super Bowl XLIV in 2010. The Saints won by 14 points, ensuring Walters enjoyed a monster payout. However, one gambler we know of has usurped Walters.
Jim McIngvale, better known as Mattress Mack, is a wealthy man. He owns the Gallery Furniture chain and has a bigger bankroll than most, to say the least! McIngvale is also a passionate supporter of the Houston Astros baseball team.
In 2022, he put his money where his mouth was by placing wagers worth $10m on the Astros to win the World Series. After his beloved Astros succeeded, McIngvale received a reported payout of $75m. Caesars Digital said it paid $30m to the mattress mogul.
The thing is, the mattress king is no soft touch. Rather than risking the huge sum, he hedges his bets. McIngvale is known for his generous promotions, giving customers their purchases for free if their local teams win championships. Then, he hedges these wagers by betting on those teams to win.
The above example was a win-win since his favorite team won, and he received an eight-figure payout. However, McIngvale would have ended in profit even if the Astros lost.
While the above is perhaps the biggest bet ever won (or close to it), McIngvale regularly places huge wagers. In 2022, he lost an estimated $9.5m backing the Bengals to beat the Rams in the Super Bowl. McIngvale is also known for losing large sums on other wagers, such as betting on the Patriots to win the Super Bowl and the Alabama Crimson Tide winning the college football national title.
For the most part, the biggest sports bet win in terms of odds relates to accumulators. However, occasionally, an underdog stuns the world by defying huge odds.
Towards the end of the 2011 MLB season, the St. Louis Cardinals were 999/1 to win the World Series. A stunning recovery ensued, and the Cards lifted the trophy.
The “Miracle on Ice” performed by the American ice hockey team saw the U.S. win the 1980 Olympic title at pre-tournament odds of 1,000/1. This improbable feat was surpassed in the 2000 Olympics when Rulon Gardner came from nowhere to win the wrestling gold medal at odds of 2,000/1. In the process, he defeated Alexsandr Karelin, the greatest Greco-Roman wrestler of the 20th century.
In terms of long odds single event bets, though, few things compare to Leicester City’s English Premier League title win in 2016, at odds of 5,000/1. The Foxes pulled off the upset across a long, 38-game season, making their achievement all the more remarkable.
Also known as accumulator bets, parlays involve combining several bets into one. If any leg of the wager loses, the entire bet fails. While the odds of winning a large accumulator are long, the payouts can be spectacular.
Mick Gibbs is one of the few bettors known to have won two or more long odds parlays. In 1999, his nine-team accumulator turned £2.50 into approximately £157,000, the win coming at odds of around 62,800/1.
Incredibly, Gibbs surpassed this feat in 2001. Bayern Munich’s Champions League final victory over Valencia resulted in a £500,000 payout from a £0.30 accumulator wager that featured 14 teams! By the way, Bayern won that match in a penalty shootout! This 1,666,666/1 parlay is likely to be the biggest odds bet ever to win.
In gambling, you’re always more likely to hear about successful bets than colossal failures. In reality, for every big win, there are countless losses. So, while it is fun to dream of becoming a millionaire by placing the biggest sports bets with crypto, you should always approach gambling sensibly.
A growing number of bettors are flocking to crypto sports betting sites. They know that, in general, such sportsbooks offer better odds than traditional platforms. Punters also know that reputable crypto betting sites will pay out big wins with minimal fuss.
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