Which sports bet would you take: $625000 on Monday morning or $1.2 million on Monday night? – Chicago Tribune

Which sports bet would you take: 5000 on Monday morning or .2 million on Monday night? – Chicago Tribune

Which sports bet would you take: 5000 on Monday morning or .2 million on Monday night? – Chicago Tribune

Would you choose to take a $625,000 cash-out option Monday morning on a pending sports bet or would you gamble on a potential $1.2 million win on Monday night?
Most people would immediately — and instinctively — take the $625,000, correct? Even most sports bettors, especially me, would do this. As my late father, a fabled gambler, always told me, “50% of something is better than 100% of nothing.”
Not Marco Piemonte, who holds a betting ticket that hinges on Monday night’s college football national championship game. If Georgia wins, regardless of score, he wins $1,206,956.58. If Alabama wins, he loses everything, including his initial $30,000 bet.
Piemonte, a general manager at Al Piemonte Auto Group in Chicago, has a simple explanation for his risky decision.
“You’re not in my shoes,” he tells fellow sports bettors.
Most people wouldn’t fit in those shoes.
Sports betting reflects our personality as well as our shoe size. I learned this truth after three years of placing bets that usually lose. I habitually pay small amounts of money to agonize over football games that otherwise mean nothing to me. It’s heaven. It’s hell. It’s impossible to imagine placing a $30,000 bet on any game.
“I couldn’t live with myself if I cashed out and then won the bet,” Piemonte told hosts of “Bet the Edge” podcast on NBC Sports EDGE.
He placed that whopping bet while cradling his 8-month-old daughter.
“My 8-month-old is my good luck charm,” he said.
When it comes to betting, good luck charms come in any form, even infant daughters.
Piemonte is no stranger to good luck. In October, he placed a similar $30,000 parlay bet and turned down a cash-out option of $668,000 before winning $1.3 million. He placed the four-leg bet, with three of those games winning in his favor. The fourth game, between the Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos on Thursday Night Football, also went his way with an upset victory by a Browns team decimated by key injuries.
Again, most people would have took the sure-thing win for $668,000. Not Piemonte, whose father, Al Piemonte, was a familiar face and voice to Chicagoland TV viewers. The popular auto pitchman with his trademark hand gestures and flashy sweaters offered the best prices for vehicles, usually Fords, until his death in 2014.
His son has a similar zest for the best value when it comes to sports betting.
“I want value,” Marco Piemonte said on “Bet the Edge” regarding his betting strategy.
For this latest $30,000 bet, via PointsBet, he waited to place it until one football game was already in action, called “live” betting. He waited until the Kansas City Chiefs had an 11-point lead over the Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday before placing the bet on the Bengals to win. It gave him better odds, though it would have given me a heart attack.
“I just always seem to be on the right side of betting,” he said.
I’ve just always seemed to be on the wrong side of betting. It hasn’t stopped me from doing it. Last weekend during the flurry of college football bowl games I lost a $1,200 payoff on a $20 nine-leg parlay bet because one team I chose, Ohio State, won by only three points instead of seven. I felt as defeated as the losing team.
There’s only one more college football game this season, and Piemonte will be in attendance at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis with a few friends. He has 1.2 million reasons to be there in person, and has “total confidence” that Georgia will beat ‘Bama.
“It might be a massacre,” he said despite Alabama handily beating Georgia earlier in the season.
The Crimson Tide rolled over the No. 1 Bulldogs 41-24 in December. Piemonte, whose Twitter handle is @Marco_Parlay, doesn’t care. He insists he’s not going to cash out before the game kicks off.
For those of you who don’t understand how parlays work, it’s pretty simple.
In Piemonte’s case, he wagered $30,000 on five games that hinge on winning a sequence of each individual wager. The odds for each pick become multiplied to determine the total odds. The more bets, the longer the odds but the higher the payout.
Piemonte’s odds for this bet were +3923. Think of it this way: for every $100 wagered, the bet would pay out $3,923.
“All of us at PointsBet are certainly paying close attention to the Georgia-Alabama game to see if Marco’s expertise and patience pays off,” said Johnny Aitken, the CEO of PointsBet USA.
Millions of sports bettors will also be watching. Gambling is our nation’s true national pastime, whether you approve or not.
“You can bet 10 bucks and be entertained for three hours,” said Jay Kornegay, vice president of the Westgate Superbook in Las Vegas.
This describes me perfectly. Not so much for Piemonte, whose company website profile describes him this way: “Marco enjoys quality family time, Sunday football, and the occasional weekend getaway.”
His weekend getaway to Indy for Monday night’s big game would probably cause me to wet my pants before kickoff. Piemonte seems unfazed by such pregame stress.
“They’re not all fun like this one,” he said.
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