DraftKings Receives Pushback for ‘Never Forget’ 9/11 Parlay Promotion

DraftKings Receives Pushback for ‘Never Forget’ 9/11 Parlay Promotion article feature image

Photo by Denise Truscello/Getty Images for DraftKings Inc. Pictured: DraftKings logo.

DraftKings created a "Never Forget" parlay promotion to commemorate 9/11 that involved three New York teams to win on Monday night. Then, amid pushback, the sportsbook promptly took the promotion down.

The pre-made parlay required the Mets to beat the Diamondbacks, the Yankees to beat the Red Sox and the Jets to beat the Bills on Monday.

"Bet these New York teams to win tonight on 9/11," the parlay read.

How is this real pic.twitter.com/OOpQtQamHu

— Avery Zimmerman (@azimmerman_1) September 11, 2023

“We sincerely apologize for the featured parlay that was shared briefly in commemoration of 9/11,” said a DraftKings spokesman said in a statement. “We respect the significance of this day for our country and especially for the families of those who were directly affected.”

As of Monday morning's market prices, the fair value odds for that parlay should have been at least +680 — not the +651 advertised. At least 900 people placed a wager at +651.

DraftKings — and other sportsbooks, to be fair — is in the business of making these pre-made selections because parlays are the most lucrative financial instrument available to them.

Sportsbooks have profited, on average, six cents of every dollar wagered over the last 20 years, according to a report conducted by UNLV's Center for Gaming Research. Professional sports bettors exist because it's still possible to create alpha at this clip.

For parlays, though, sportsbooks profit more than 32 cents per dollar, on average.

And the margins for Same Game Parlays are even higher, according to industry experts.

So, these pre-made parlay selections provide horribly negative expected value. Enough to make sportsbooks extremely profitable enterprises. And it turns out that sometimes, pre-made parlays can be tasteless in more ways than one.

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