Every couple of months, serial woman beater and occasional boxer Floyd Mayweather takes to Instagram to pound his chest about winning a huge sports bet. His winning bets, often worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, are impressive to some. Well, they shouldn't be, because Floyd Mayweather is a bad sports bettor.
Granted, you wouldn't know that if you looked at Mayweather's Instagram account, or actual sports news sites, who jump at the chance to talk about Mayweather's bets whenever possible. Even rankings aggregation site/food blog Deadspin has covered his winning bets in the past. However, it's true: Floyd Mayweather is not a good sports bettor.
"But, Jay," you say with the twinkle of childlike innocence in your eyes. "How can Floyd 'Money' Mayweather be bad at sports betting when he posts nothing but winning tickets worth tons of money!?"
Well, there are a multitude of reasons as to why Floyd Mayweather is a garbage sports bettor, some of which are more obvious than others. Let's run through them, shall we?
Sports betting is hard. So hard, in fact, that a win percentage of 55% is considered exemplary and profitable and what professionals shoot for. In Floyd's case, this means that it is somewhat unlikely (read: a 100% certainty for any human object) that the winning tickets he posts to Twitter and Instagram aren't the only plays he's making, and that he is definitely making some losing plays.
Even the most fraudulent professional handicappers, ones who refuse to document their selections without money exchanging hands, cop to a loss once in a while. The fact that Mayweather handpicks which tickets he publishes, much like he handpicks inferior fighters to keep his undefeated record in tact, turns his betting into more of a branding exercise than an actual wager. And with news organizations giving him free press in regards to those wagers, he's winning more than just money. He's winning free mentions for his upcoming fights in multiple corners of the Internet.
Let's say, hypothetically, that Floyd Mayweather actually did care about sports betting as more than a branding tool. In this alternate universe, he actually bet to make money, and not to bolster his nickname, which is also Money, but with a capital M instead of the lowercase m like in the first use of money in this sentence.
If that were the case, Floyd Mayweather would bet in consistent units like every smart sports bettor in the world. Let's take a look at the winning tickets Mayweather still has active on his Twitter and Instagram accounts.
Those are not consistent betting units. Just looking at these bets, which are all over the goddamn map, makes my skin crawl.
Again, it's fine if you're just betting for the hell of it. People do that all the time. But those people don't have ESPN, CBS Sports, CNBC (?), and other legitimate news organizations writing about it when they do, hyping fights and other items in the process. And neither should Floyd Mayweather.
In case you missed it above, here's Mayweather's latest win, a multi-hundred thousand dollar haul from taking Seattle against Washington this past Monday.
Well, here's the thing with this bet: while he won the bet and the dollars that came with it, it was objectively a horrible play, as sharps were all over Washington getting a touchdown at home.
Seattle are the defending Super Bowl champions, and got a huge percentage of the bets in this game as a result. But Washington was the better play, regardless of the final outcome of the game.
Despite winning this bet, Mayweather's flaunting of this wager makes him look absolutely foolish to those with a discerning eye for NFL betting, maybe more so than posting a losing ticket with a home underdog would. But losing tickets don't get you free publicity on the Internet, so tickets like Monday's Seahawks ticket serve as nothing more than a fun inside joke for people who know what they're looking at, while #TheMoneyTeam flaunt their winnings.
If we're being realistic here, Floyd Mayweather doesn't bet on sports to be smart, or even to win money. The guy is rich enough to live several lifetimes comfortably, which is undeniably a testament to his hard work both in and out of the ring. But Floyd Mayweather bets on sports to strengthen his brand positioning as Floyd 'Money' Mayweather. And the sports media is buying what he's selling hook, line, and sinker, no matter how bad he really is at gambling.