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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Blown call costs gamblers $150 million-plus, Sportsbook.com refunds Packers bets (UPDATE)

UPDATE: Deadspin pointed out that the website Sportsbook actually runs two separate sites — one that services the United States and another that services the rest of the world. Conveniently enough, bets are only being refunded through the site that Americans do not use.

Losing a wager because of a Hail Mary is a tough enough pill to swallow without the replacement officials making it even harder. The Packers were 3.5-point favorites at most major sports books and on most gambling websites Monday night. Green Bay had the spread covered until Golden Tate’s phantom reception won the game for Seattle, and ESPN’s Darren Rovell reported that the blown call shifted at least $150 million in wagers worldwide. After refunding all lost Packers bets, the gambling website Sportsbook.com can no longer be included in that figure.

The image you see above was tweeted by Glen McGregor of the Ontario Sun on Tuesday. It shows a message from Sportsbook.com informing users that the website has chosen to do the “right thing” and refund all lost wagers on the Packers. ESPN reported that an estimated 70 to 80 percent of the action was on Green Bay.

“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” the man in charge of Sportsbook.com said according to McGregor. “The whole world was laughing at the on-field decision. The punters got mugged.”

Below is a video showing the reaction of folks at the Green Valley Ranch casino in Las Vegas when the infamous call was made.

Since Golden Tate insists he actually made the catch and that the refs got the call right, he must think the people in charge of Sportsbook.com are crazy. In the meantime, people like me sit back and cross our fingers Bovada feels pressured to do the same.

H/T Deadspin



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