Betting on NBA Draft #1 Pick

Somebody placed a $60,000 bet that Victor Wembanyama would be the number one pick. The pay out? You get your $60,000 back + $300. Still, based on simple interest for a 1 day bet, that’s a 180% annual rate. You’re not going to get that in a i-Bond.


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Only if you win the bet.

Wembanyama was the #1 pick this evening. It wasn’t a game of chance. I’m surprised the sports books even took bets.


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Except you can not make that bet 365 times.

I’ve seen some highlites of Victor, he is extremely skinny. Good thing for him that hand checking and other physicality has been removed from the game. I’m sure not convinced that he is going to be 1 of the all time greats, but it was definitely a good bet on him going # 1 overall, even with such a minimal payout.

In my book, risking $60k for a $300 pay off is not a good bet. YMMV.

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Why would someone do this? To make the news? People remain a mystery to me, but I do enjoy developing theories about their motivation, I admit.

I was in Houston and Hakeem Olajuwon and Ralph Sampson where with the Rockets. Ralph looked like a stretched out point guard, thin and frail but tall. Hakeem looked like a 6’10" middleweight boxer.

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I remember them well. Olajuwon was unreal good for a # of years. Sampson wasn’t on his level, but it made for a really tough defensive tandem between them.

I watched a lot of hoops back then, Pistons were coming into their own for the first time ever, so basketball was really popular in Michigan for about a decade or so. Houston was a tough matchup for them.

I was in Hakeem’s class at UofH, “I go where Clyde go”. We all had a wild time watching the post season in 1983

Hakeem was the most athletic center of all time. Clyde Drexler would have been the MJ of his day if the actual MJ was not in there.

Phi Slama Jama!

Plus some obligatory characters, none of which might offend children.