Tracking Mattress Mack’s Month of Action: 30 Days & $13 Million in Bets
Darren Rovell. Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale poses with a fan.
By now you probably know the story of Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale, the 68-year-old furniture mogul and philanthropist who has spent the better part of October placing huge bets on his beloved Houston Astros to win the World Series.
McIngvale told The Action Network he placed “more than $13 million” in bets on the Astros to win the World Series — and if they had emerged from the Fall Classic victorious, those wagers would’ve profited around $25 million.
Mack did this, in part, as a hedge against a promotion he was running at his Houston-area furniture stores that would’ve had to refund more than $20 million in purchases if Houston won the World Series.
But, of course, the Astros did not win it all, losing in brutal fashion in Game 7.
Here’s the blow-by-blow of how McIngvale managed to wager more than $13 million in a month’s time, including up-close access as Mack flew to from Houston to the legal gambling locales of Las Vegas, Mississippi and New Jersey.
Tuesday, Oct. 1
McIngvale has officially placed his $3.5 million bet on the Astros to win the World Series. The DraftKings Sportsbook at the Scarlet Pearl Casino in Biloxi, Miss., accepted the bet.
It’s believed to be one of the biggest single wagers ever accepted in the U.S.
McIngvale got +220 on the bet, so he would profit $7.7 million if the Astros end up winning the World Series.
Wednesday, Oct. 2
Mattress Mack does it again: A day after placing a $3.5 million wager on the Astros to win the World Series, he bet another $1.5 million at FanDuel Sportsbook in New Jersey. McIngvale got +220 odds on this bet, as well, meaning he’s bet $5 million total on the Astros and if they win the World Series, he’ll profit $11 million.
Fun fact: Mattress Mack placed the wager on his mobile device. Talk about a big wire transfer…
Wednesday, Oct. 9
4:55 p.m. ET: McIngvale is back for more. He just wagered $504,000 to win $200,000 on the Astros to win Thursday’s Game 5 of the ALDS against the Tampa Bay Rays. The bet, which was placed at Circa Sports in Las Vegas, was first reported by VSiN’s Paul Howard and confirmed to The Action Network by Circa representatives.
This bet, since it’s just on the Astros to advance, isn’t a direct hedge against the promotion, but it’s another way McIngvale is trying to protect himself against his potential liability.
Back on Oct. 1, when Mattress Mack placed his initial $3.5 million wager on Houston to win the World Series, he told The Action Network, “My liability is a little bit north of $15 million. So I still have other bets to place.”
Thursday, Oct. 10
3:55 p.m. ET: Can the Rays, whose starting lineup cost less than five times what the Astros lineup does, pull a huge upset vs. Houston tonight? One bettor in Vegas is extremely confident that won’t happen: William Hill took a $1 million bet on the Astros this afternoon ON ITS APP.
At -260 odds, it would net $385,000 if they prevail. William Hill spokesman Michael Grodsky would not confirm or deny if the bet was placed by Mattress Mack.
10:25 p.m. ET: Mattress Mack made some money back with the Astros’ Game 5 victory.
As we reported yesterday, McIngvale first bet $504,000 on Game 5 at Circa in Las Vegas. And the aforementioned $1 million bet at William Hill was also Mack.
The result of risking $1,504,000? A cool $584,615.40 in profit.
Mattress Mack has many bets pending on the Astros to win the World Series, including a $3.5 million wager at a DraftKings book in Mississippi and $1.5 million at FanDuel in New Jersey. Those two bets would net him $11 million if the Astros do in fact win it all.
Saturday, Oct. 12
10:05 a.m. ET: A day after winning nearly $600,000 on the Astros in Game 5 of the ALDS, McIngvale flew to New Jersey to put even more on Houston’s title odds.
Unibet, a long-time European operator that recently moved into the New Jersey market in June 2019, took two separate $500,000 mobile wagers from McIngvale on the Astros at +120 odds. The bets were placed from Teterboro Airport in New Jersey on Friday night.
Those winnings would nearly cover his liability from the promotion, which he told The Action Network was a little bit more than $15 million.
Jonathan Aiwazian, VP of Unibet’s Sportsbook, said this was the largest wager the book had taken since opening its U.S. operations, adding, “It took a few days to figure out the logistics (he needed to travel to NJ), but we enjoyed chatting with him every step of the way. Jim was happy to take the odds we had live, and we wish him luck with this bet.”
Sunday, Oct. 13
3:15 p.m. ET: McIngvale isn’t done getting action down on his beloved Houston Astros.
McIngvale put another $250,000 on Houston to win the World Series at Unibet. This bet, one of many he’s made over the past few days, would pay out $750,000.
That brings Mattress Mack’s total investments to $6.25 million. If Houston wins, he’d profit $12.95 million. (And remember, he already pocketed $584,615.40 from wagers placed on the Astros in Game 5 of the ALDS.)
Tuesday, Oct. 15
4:40 p.m. ET: Another day, another massive wager on the Astros to win the World Series from Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale. The Houston furniture store owner plopped down $500,000 on Houston at +160 odds, as Patrick Everson first reported. The bet would profit $800,000.
5:45 p.m. ET: Yesterday, a $500,000 bet on the Astros to win the World Series circulated on Twitter. It came a day after Houston tied up the ACLS vs. the Yankees at one game each, and seemed to be the work of McIngvale.
This afternoon, I was indeed able to confirm that McIngvale was the bettor who placed the wager at Circa Sports in Las Vegas. He got +210 odds, so this particular bet would profit $1,050,000 if Houston wins.
Below is a running tally of all the bets that we’ve been able to confirm Mattress Mack has placed on the Astros to win the World Series. McIngvale also wagered $1,504,000 on Houston to win Game 5 of the ALDS, which profited him $584,615.40.
Friday, Oct. 18
3:20 p.m. ET: The Houston Astros are one game away from the World Series, but “Mattress Mack” isn’t relaxing.
The owner of Houston-based Gallery Furniture is on his last day of giving full refunds to customers if the Astros win the World Series and his liability is approaching $20 million we’re told.
And he’s in the office.
“It’s going crazy in here,” he yells into the phone.
Unable to get insurance, we’ve tracked “Mattress Mack” making $7.6 million in bets on the Astros to win the World Series with a payout of $15.3 million if they won.
“I’m not gonna tell you how much I’ve bet, but it’s more than that,” Mack said. “Hey, can you put my cell phone in the article? So that bookmakers can call me?”
On Saturday and Sunday, “Mack” said Gallery Furniture’s promotion will go from giving a full refund for purchases to customers getting 50% off.
Wednesday, Oct. 23
In the run-up to Game 2 of the World Series, I spent the entire day with Mattress Mack … and it got real interesting in a hurry.
11:20 a.m. ET: Mack is on the phone with one of his gambling consultants in Vegas to get a sense of market this morning.
The Astros are still a favorite (-118, -120) despite losing Game 1.
“I still have some liability,” Mack says. “But New Jersey has dried up.” He asks to call around to the Beau Rivage in Mississippi and places in Vegas. “I’ll fly there today if I have to.”
11:50 a.m. ET: How much has Mack gotten down? He won’t say exactly, but he’s upping the number. “At least $10 million. I’ll probably get down another $1 million.”
Here are all the bets we’ve been able to confirm so far:
12:50 p.m. ET: More than 100 people have come to say hi and take pictures. This young man, visiting from Kentucky, wanted Mack to autograph the Astros World Series hat Mack gave him.
1 p.m. ET: Biloxi, Mississippi here we come.
The folks at the DraftKings Sportsbook at the Scarlet Pearl Casino in Biloxi have agreed to book Mack’s action, so we’re rushing to the airport to get on a private jet to fly to Mississippi.
The particulars? Oh, just a million bucks on Houston to win the World Series at -118. This particular wager would net $847,000.
The flight is about 35 minutes, so we should make it back to Houston in time for first pitch without much of a problem.
2 p.m. ET: We’ve arrived at the airport and will be taking off for The Magnolia State shortly so that Mack can get another million dollars down on the Astros.
The airport’s name is pretty fitting, huh?
2:30 p.m. ET: Wheels up time. Mack and I are off to Mississippi. When Mack comes back to Texas he will be a million dollars lighter.
3:30 p.m. ET: We’ve landed in Mississippi. There was a limo waiting for us at the airport. Now we’re off to place a bet. A very large bet.
5:10 p.m. ET: So what’s the process for making a $1 million bet? It’s actually not as complicated as you’d think.
Mack wired the cash to the casino, where he then converted the money into chips before heading to the sportsbook to place the wager.
The result is this ticket, which will pay out $847,457.65 if the Astros come back from a one-game deficit to win the World Series.
5:37 p.m. ET: While on the way to Mississippi, Mack got a second casino, the Beau Rivage, to agree to accept his action at the Astros to win the World Series at -120 odds.
So after finishing up at the Scarlet Pearl, we hopped back in the limo for a quick eight-minute drive and repeated the same process again, converting the money wired to the casino into chips before ultimately getting what we came for in the first place: an extremely valuable piece of paper.
The $1.6 million in bets Mattress Mack placed in less than 30 minutes brings his total amount wagered on the Astros to $10.2 million. If they win it all, he’d net $17,317,873.
7:28 p.m. ET: We’ve landed in Houston after a quick plane ride back from Mississippi and have 40 minutes to get to Game 2 of the World Series. Mattress Mack has his two betting tickets, worth a combined $1.6 million, on hand as he speeds (literally) to the stadium.
$1.6 million worth of bets on the Astros, 830 miles flown round trip to Biloxi, Mississippi and “Mattress Mack” and I are trying to make first pitch. pic.twitter.com/c4CdXINYQk
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 23, 2019
Below is a quick rundown of all the bets from Mack on the Astros to win the World Series (that we’ve been able to confirm). McIngvale also told me he lost $384,500 betting on Houston to win Game 1. When you combine that with the $584,615 Mack won wagering on Houston in Game 5 of the ALDS, he’s cleared almost exactly $200K via one-off bets on his hometown team.
9:19 p.m. ET: The Astros and Nationals are tied, 2-2, heading into the sixth inning but Mack doesn’t seem too worried. Probably because everywhere he turns someone wants to shake his hand or take a picture.
The line forming to informally take pictures with “Mattress Mack.” He can’t walk the concourse without being stopped. pic.twitter.com/zLNZl6kTt8
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 24, 2019
11 p.m. ET: A six-run seventh inning by the Nationals had made it apparent that Mack and the Astros would find themselves down, 2-0, after Game 2.
Most fans were showing their emotion, upset that it looked likely that their would-be dynasty was about to fall short for the second October in a row. But Mack was upbeat and continued to take pictures on the way out.
“Mattress Mack! Ten million strong!” Someone yelled as we walked the concourse.
After entering the World series as -220 favorites, the Astros will now find themselves as at least a 2-to-1 underdog as they head to Washington, needing to win four of five games against the Nats.
The task is daunting, but are the odds too good to pass up?
“Depends on what my consultants say,” Mack said. “Gotta keep the faith.”
Friday, Oct. 25
1 p.m. ET: McIngvale flew to New Jersey this morning to place another $1.05 million in bets on his hometown team.
Mattress Mack landed at Teterboro Airport on Friday, walked out of his private plane and into a lobby where officials for Unibet and William Hill were waiting for him.
When McIngvale landed, more than $1 million had been wired to the sportsbooks. Unibet went first, as Mattress Mack bet $100,000 at +210 odds on the Astros to win the World Series (would net $210,000 if they come back from being down 0-2). He also bet $150,000 at -152 odds on the Astros to win Game 3 tonight (would net $99,000).
Next up was William Hill. When Mack opened just app, his account read $800,005. On two bets he drained it down to $5.
He bet 300,000 at +210 on Astros win the World Series (would net $630,000) and $500,000 at -140 on tonight’s game (to net $357,142).
Here’s a full breakdown of the wagers Mack placed on Friday:
Astros to win the World Series
- $300,000 to win $630,000 (+210 odds, William Hill)
- $100,000 to win $210,000 (+210 odds, Unibet)
- Total: $400,000 to win $840,000
Astros to win Game 3
- $500,000 to win $357,142.86 (-140 odds, William Hill)
- $150,000 to win $99,000 (-152 odds, Unibet)
- Total: $650,000 to win $456,142.86
And here’s are all of Mack’s bets (that we’ve been able to confirm) on the Astros to win World Series over the past three weeks.
From the sportsbooks’ perspective, what goes into giving Mattress Mack more access to betting?
“It’s a long-term relationship,” said Jonathan Aiwazian, vice president of sportsbook for Unibet. “We hope he’s back tomorrow.”
“We’ve had a lot of cases with big bets,” said William Hill’s Nick Bogdanovich. “We’ve now done a lot of business with him.”
As for Mattress Mack, after an hour and a half of placing his bets and making sure they were processed correctly — the large-money wagers make it more complicated — he left for Washington D.C. to watch tonight’s Game 3 in person.
“We’re feeling good,” he said.
11:30 p.m. ET: As the Astros completed their first victory of the World Series, McIngvale might’ve left Nationals Park the biggest winner of them all.
Earlier on Friday, Mack made a pitstop in New Jersey to add to his laundry-list of Astros wagers. He bet $650,000 to win $456,142 on Game 3 alone — and using mobile apps in New Jersey, along with friends in Las Vegas, he got another $725,000 down on Houston to win it all. Those three futures wagers would profit $1,555,000 if the Astros complete their comeback.
Below is a full rundown of McIngvale’s bets (that we’ve been able to confirm) on Houston to win the World Series. In addition to these bets, Mack has profited at least $1,040,757 on single-game wagers.
Saturday, Oct. 26
2:15 p.m. ET: A day after winning $456,142 on the Astros winning Game 3 of the World Series, “Mattress Mack” flew from Washington D.C. to New Jersey to place another six-figure bet.
This time, the Houston furniture store owner plopped down $300,000 on Houston at +100 odds to win Game 4. If the Astros are victorious for a second consecutive night, he’ll profit exactly $300,000.
William Hill, which just paid out $357,142 to Mack last night, accepted the wager.
11:59 p.m. ET: After Houston went down 0-2 in the World Series, millionaire Astros bettor Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale told me simply: “Gotta keep the faith.”
He did more than that.
Over the next 72 hours, Mack proceeded to double down. He put $725,000 more on his hometown team to win the World Series, bringing his total to nearly $11 million (among what we’ve been able to confirm). He also bet $650,000 (to win $456,142) on the Astros in Game 3 and another $300K (to win $300K) on Houston in Game 4.
With the Astros winning both contest (on the road, no less), Mack was rewarded handsomely for keeping the faith, adding $756,142 to his bankroll.
Sunday, Oct. 27
5:37 p.m. ET: McIngvale told me he had one of his associates bet $312,400 on the Astros to win Game 5 of the World Series with Gerrit Cole and Max Scherzer set to face off in an ace-vs.-ace battle. Mack got Houston at -149 odds at Circa Sportsbook (for $298K of his $312K) and -144 at a different shop (for $14,400). In total, he was set to profit $210,000 if the Astros won.
But a few hours after the bet was locked in, Scherzer got scratched from Game 5, shifting the odds dramatically. Because Mack selected the “Action” method of betting, his wagers did not void, but the odds adjusted. While he still has $312,400 on the line tonight, it’s now to win $133,070, the equivalent of -236 odds.
11:29 p.m. ET: Mattress Mack is on a roll. Jim McIngvale — the famed Astros bettor who’s wagered 8-figures on his hometown team as a means of hedging promotions running at his furniture stores — just won $133,070 with Houston’s Game 5 win.
Mack also made standalone wagers on the Astros in Games 3 and 4, all of which won, netting him $756,142. So in total, over the past three days, he’s won $889,212.
In terms of his futures bets, here’s what McIngvale would win should the Astros capture one of the next two games at home:
Monday, Oct. 28
11:35 p.m. ET: The World Series was off on Monday, but “Mattress Mack,” managed to keep himself busy. The Houston native who has at least $11 million in World Series futures riding on his hometown team flew to Nevada to bet more on the Astros.
With the Astros up 3-2 and massive -800 favorites to win the series, Mack focused his attention on the Game 6 price, betting two separate times on Houston to win at William Hill, both at -172 odds:
- $860,000 to profit $500,000
- $430,000 to profit $250,000
- Total: $1,290,000 to profit $750,000
In addition to his massive pile of futures wagers (more on that in a moment), Mack has profited quite a bit off his single-game bets. Here’s a rundown of what we’ve been able to learn:
- Won $584,615 on Game 5 of the ALCS
- Won $456,142 on Game 3 of the World Series
- Won $300,000 on Game 4 of the World Series
- Won $133,070 on Game 5 of the World Series
Add it all up and Mack has profited $1,473,827, which is more than the $1.29 million he’s risking on Game 6.
Tuesday, Oct. 29
11:50 p.m. ET: The “Mattress Mack” Betting Saga has one more chapter. The Washington Nationals defeated the Houston Astros, 7-2, in Game 6 on Tuesday night to force a do-or-die Game 7 in Houston on Wednesday night. That means that, after all the hoopla and publicity, Mack’s $11 million wager comes down to one game.
It was a rough night for the Astros and their fans, but it was even worse for Mack, who lost at least $1.29 million on a pair of bets on the Astros as -172 favorites in Game 6.
But if the Astros turn it around tomorrow, the $1.29 million McIngvale lost tonight will be but a footnote in what has become one of the great gambling stories in history.
Mack didn’t say if he’d try and get down more money on the Astros ahead of Wednesday night’s season finale, but he was scouring betting apps before the final out of Game 6. Nobody had posted any lines at that time, but they are up now.
The Astros, who were -800 favorites to win the World Series heading into Tuesday night, opened as -140 favorites in Game 7 at the Westgate SuperBook.
“I’m going to go to work and come to the ballpark,” Mack said of his plans for Wednesday. “I’m all in.”
Pretty calm for a man who has at least $19 million down at various sportsbooks from Sea to Shining Sea:
Wednesday, Oct. 30
In the run-up to Game 7 of the World Series, I spent the entire day with Mattress Mack … and again we found ourselves on a private jet to place more bets in Mississippi.
11:49 a.m. ET: Undeterred by Tuesday night’s Game 6 loss, Mattress Mack is flying from Houston to Mississippi to bet another $675,000 on the Astros. The wager, which would profit $500,000 (-135 odds), will be placed at Scarlet Pearl Casino in Biloxi, Miss.
This brings his total wagered on Houston to win the World Series to $11,600,000 (of what we’ve been able to confirm). Should the Astros emerge from Game 7 victorious, Mack would net at least $19.37 million.
We’ll have more on Mack’s journey to and from Mississippi throughout the day, as we’re spending the entire day with him as he sweats potentially the biggest bet on a single team in sports history.
Here’s a full rundown of his wagers (among what we’ve confirmed).
1:14 p.m. ET: We just landed in Mississippi.
We spent an hour and 13 minutes in the air, and Mack used most of that time working to see what other bets might be available. He’s already negotiated with the DraftKings Sportsbook in the Scarlet Pearl Casino to bet another $675,000 on the Astros. The bet would pay out $500,000 if Houston wins tonight.
As we drive to the casino he says, “It’s time for the home team to win a game.”
1:36 p.m. ET: Believe it or not, it’s not always easy to get sportsbooks to take six- to seven-figure bets — and as we approach the Scarlet Pearl Casino, Mack is expressing some frustration.
“MGM won’t take my bet and they are the official betting partner of the league. For Game 7 of the World Series. I thought that was the most important baseball game of the year.”
“Caesars originally said they would take $1 million. Then they called back and said $50,000.”
Talking to the CFO at Scarlet Pearl: “OK, I wired money to the Beau Rivage [Casino] and they aren’t taking my bet. Can I wire that back to you?” CFO responds: “No sir we are tapped out with you.”
Looks like Mack will only be getting down the $675,000 at the Scarlet Pearl today.
1:57 p.m. ET: Mack accidentally wired $700,000 to the Scarlet Pearl Casino. The book agreed to take “only” a $675,000 bet, so they gave him back $25,000 in cash (pictured above). But being the convincing Texan that he is, Mack was able to get the book to accept the full $700,000 bet at -135 odds, meaning he’d profit $518,518 if Houston wins tonight.
That brings his tally to the following (among the bets we’ve been able to confirm). The DraftKings Sportsbook in the Scarlet Pearl Casino has now taken $6.2 million of the $11.625 million in bets accounted for below.
3:32 p.m. ET: VSiN’s Paul Howard reports that Mack bet another $336,000 on the Astros in Las Vegas via his advisers, professional sports bettors Anthony Curtis and Frank Betti.
I was with McIngvale when word got out of those wagers, and he said simply, “My guys told me they were gonna make some bets.”
The $336K was spread between two books — Circa Sportsbook took $270,000 of it and the Rio took the remaining $66,000. The Circa wager was at -135 odds, meaning it would profit an even $200,000. We’re unsure on the odds for the other wager, but it’s in the same vicinity, which would equate to a ~$50,000 profit on the $66K investment.
Here’s a rundown, based on what we’ve been able to confirm, with the bets Mack has riding on the Astros to win the World Series:
5:48 p.m. ET: We’re back from Mississippi and have arrived at the park for tonight’s game. Mack is hosting 30 kids with cancer and their parents tonight for Game 7. He did the same for World Series Game 1, buying tickets for 110 veterans. There’s obviously been a lot of focus on his betting, but his philanthropy is what makes him a local legend.
11:52 p.m. ET: The sweat heard ’round the world is over.
Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale, a 68-year-old furniture mogul and philanthropist, told The Action Network he lost “more than $13 million” in bets after the Washington Nationals defeated the Houston Astros, 6-2, in Game 7 of the World Series.
The wagers would’ve profited approximately $25 million, according to McIngvale.
McIngvale had spent the past month betting millions on his beloved Astros to win the World Series as a means of hedging a season-long promotion running at his furniture stores that promised to refund all purchases of more than $3,000 if the Astros brought home the title.
Mack has said his liabilities for the promotion are north of $20 million.
“I feel like I hedged perfectly,” McIngvale told The Action Network while sitting in his car after Game 7. “The worst my customers got were great mattresses, the best would have been great, free mattresses. I would have loved for the Astros fans to win, but we had two bad games.
“My mattresses obviously had profit baked into them. I would do this again tomorrow — and I probably will. It’s fun to be part of the greatest story in gambling history.”
McIngvale’s month-long journey took him to at least nine different sportsbooks in three different states, traveling the country by private jet, many times the morning before attending an Astros game in person, to drop more cash on his hometown team.
The new-age of sports betting — which now includes 13 states taking legal wagers — provided Mack more outs as he tried to hedge his promotion, but still not as many as he would’ve liked.
“I would like to thank Beau Rivage for not taking my $500,000 bet today. Unibet for always having the highest odds against the Astros, causing me to bet elsewhere. FanDuel for cutting me off. You really did save me money!
“I would also like to thank the Scarlet Pearl Casino in Mississippi for taking all my action and being incredibly gracious and accommodating. They outdid the big boys.”
By our count, the Scarlet Pearl Casino, which has a DraftKings Sportsbook inside, stands to make the most money off McIngvale’s bets.
The property in Biloxi, Miss., booked $6.2 million in wagers from McIngvale, including $700,000 on Wednesday, just hours before Game 7.
“What was great about this year, unlike in 2017 when it was just Nevada, is that I have a lot more markets to shop around to,” McIngvale told The Action Network, referencing the last time he ran a similar promotion before the expansion of sports betting.
When asked whether he would take out insurance or bet again to hedge another promotion, Mack had this to say after Game 7: “I like the action. I like the adrenaline and playing for high stakes. It makes you want to get up in the morning.
“One of the great takeaways I learned in this month-long journey is, if you are going to be in the gambling business, why not gamble? I was stunned by how little action some of the big boys wanted to take.”
McIngvale’s bets may have met the same fate as millions of other wagers, becoming nothing more than ripped up pieces of paper at the bottom of a trash can on the way out of a sportsbook, but his sweat was one of a kind and Mack hopes the nationwide publicity he attracted will pay off in new business at his Gallery Furniture stores.
That sounds like a good bet.
Here are bets we’ve been able to confirm Mack placed in Nevada, Mississippi and New Jersey.
Note: When Mack and I were at the DraftKings Sportsbook/Scarlet Pearl Casino earlier on Wednesday, casino representatives told me they had taken four wagers from McIngvale totaling $6.2 million. We only have dates and odds for three of the wagers below, totaling $5.2 million. We’re trying to track down the date and odds for the fourth bet.