Ravens win worst result for sportsbooks
It was another winning Super Bowl for the betting public and oddsmakers must have been wondering if there was a conspiracy afoot to help bettors win.
A Baltimore upset victory and an OVER bet was the worst possible scenario for many sportsbooks in Vegas and it was even worse for some online sportsbooks, such as Bovada.
“It is not a secret that we did not have an ideal result last night, the Ravens winning outright really cost us on the money line and futures and it made two years in a row the book did not have a winning Super Bowl,” said Bovada sportsbook manager Kevin Bradley.
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If the San Francisco 49ers had completed the rally with a late score, they would have failed to cover the spread but all the Ravens moneyline action and futures action would have been won by sportsbooks. Instead, some curious play calling and even more curious officiating (the holding non-call in the end zone for example) kept the Ravens in front.
Even the power outage conspired to cost books money. Bovada had posted a 20.5 over-under on the number of times the word ‘Harbaugh’ would be said during the telecast but a 35-minute delay left lots of time for dead air and lots of Harbaugh mentions.
“I stopped counting once it hit 30, the power outage was no help on that one,” said Bradley.
Another official confirmed a seven-figure swing when the 49ers failed to score late. Future bets as high as 20/1 at the beginning of the playoffs, paid out on the Ravens.
In Nevada, officials were hoping the betting handle would surpass last year’s total of $94 million and most were expecting to post model profits on the day.
While some Vegas operators were cursing the intentional safety in the final seconds (it was an 8/1 prop at some places), it was actually helpful to Bovada.
“One saving grace was the safety at the end of the game did not allow Baltimore to cover the alternate spread of them winning by 3.5 (paying out at 5/2 odds), which was our heaviest bet prop, so at least that went in our favor,” said Bradley.