All gamblers have done it at least once. We'll start adding random sides from sports we hardly watch, names and teams we might not even know, hoping that just once all the lottery balls align and we hit a ridiculously large parlay.
That parlay never hits. Except it did for one unbelievably fortunate bettor on Thursday.
BetMGM took a 20-leg parlay for $100. It had two tennis matches, eight soccer matches, five NHL games and five NBA games. The bettor needed everything from Ashleigh Barty to an England-San Marino soccer match scoring fewer than 7.5 goals to the Sacramento Kings winning.
And it hit. For a $123,756 win.
What does a winning 20-leg parlay look like?
What's most fascinating about some of these huge parlays you see is trying to figure out how the bettor would even come to the 20 choices on the card.
Is there someone out there who's an expert on the Miami Open women's tennis tournament, World Cup qualifiers, the NHL and the NBA? Maybe.
Here's the card via BetMGM, full of mostly large moneyline favorites.
What might be even weirder than the mix of sports: How did he or she settle on the Portland Trail Blazers and New York Islanders as the two underdogs worth including?
A couple of close calls
The biggest favorite on the card almost ended up blowing the parlay. Top seed Ashleigh Barty faced a match point against huge underdog Kristina Kucova at the Miami Open. Barty rallied from being down 5-2 in the third set to win that set 7-5 and take the match. Imagine if a parlay with 1,237-to-1 odds had 19 legs hit, and the loser was a -1408 tennis favorite.
Everything in the parlay lined up. Marin Cilic won the other tennis match on the parlay in three sets. None of the eight soccer matches blew it. England beat San Marino 5-0, keeping it under 7.5. Sweden barely outlasted Georgia (Go Dawgs?). The Islanders beat the Bruins in overtime. The Trail Blazers came back from an 11-point fourth quarter deficit and won when Damian Lillard sunk three free throws with one second remaining. The Knicks trailed by 17 in the second half and never led until the fourth quarter.
By the time the Kings and 76ers were wrapping up the NBA schedule, one bettor had somehow avoided every single land mine and stuck the landing on a 20-leg parlay. Incredible.
Hitting a 20-team parlay is just about impossible, and playing them is not strategy anyone should follow. But when it hits, it's a story for the ages.
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