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Hedge fun: Store owner bets $3.35M on Astros

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Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale, the Houston furniture store owner known for his giant bets and promotional giveaways, has plunked down more than $3 million on the hometown Astros to win the World Series and says he’s not finished yet.

On Tuesday, McIngvale placed a $2 million wager on the Astros at 10-1 with Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill in Indiana. The bet would pay a net $20 million and would be one of the largest wins in U.S. sports betting history, according to William Hill.

McIngvale said he has $1 million on the Astros at 10-1 with FanDuel in Indiana in addition $250,000 on DraftKings and $100,000 with The Score sportsbook in Colorado, where Houston was 16-1.

Now, he will begin to mitigate his $3.35 million risk with a promotional giveaway at his store, Gallery Furniture. Customers who spend $3,000 or more over the next several months will receive their money back if the Astros win the World Series, while McIngvale will win $35.6 million on his wagers in addition to publicity for his store.

Entering Wednesday’s action, the Astros (45-28), who have won nine straight games, own the best record in the American League.

“The Astros have six good pitchers and a lot of great hitters, so we’ll see what happens,” McIngvale told ESPN on Wednesday. “I thought at 16-1 and 10-1 it was definitely an overlay, so I’m in it to win it. Go ‘Stros.”

Thirteen teams have attracted more bets to win the World Series than the Astros at Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill, but the bookmaker will now be paying much more attention to Houston.

“This wager certainly makes baseball season a little more exciting for us, and we’re looking forward to seeing how that plays out,” Eric Hession, co-president of sports for Caesars Entertainment, said in a company release.

McIngvale is a beloved figure in Houston, who has opened his store to those in need of shelter when hurricanes and winter storms have hit the area. He also supports the local teams as a fan and a bettor. He had more than $11 million in play on the Astros to win the 2019 World Series. Houston lost to the Washington Nationals in the World Series. He lost $1 million earlier this year on a bet on the Houston Cougars to win the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, but won $2.7 million on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to beat the Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl in February.

“I’m sure I’ll be placing more [on the Astros] as we go on to the end of the season and hopefully get to the playoffs,” McIngvale said. “I’m not done yet, but I’m about 80 or 90 percent done.”


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