If the Astros win the World Series, furniture tycoon “Mattress Mack” will win the biggest payout in sports betting history. If they lose …

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In 1981, Jim McIngvale used his $ 5,000 total savings to open a furniture store. Times were tough in those early years, as they are for many small businesses just getting started, and then Jim was all but wiped out when the price of oil collapsed in the early 1980s and decimated the Houston economy. In 1983, a desperate McIngvale took his last $ 10,000 and decided to invest in a number of local commercials.

While filming one of these spots, he got frustrated while the cameras were rolling and pulled money out of his pockets while explaining, “Gallery furniture saves money!” The crew loved the line and kept it in the final cut. It soon became his trademark. Here is an example of a 1986 commercial:

In those early days, Gallery Furniture focused on affordable mattresses, bedroom sets, and living room furniture. Over time, it also started offering mid to high end items for every room in the home. The business grew and grew. And not least thanks to these constant commercials, Jim earned a new nickname:

Mack mattress

Today Gallery Furniture is one of the most successful independent furniture dealers in the country. Its stores have had the highest sales per square foot of any store in the United States at various times. The privately held company has estimated annual sales of $ 200 million.

This income made Mattress Mack rich. We estimate that Mattress Mack’s net worth is $ 300 million.

Aside from its furniture fame, Mattress Mack has made headlines over the years for two reasons:

1) His philanthropy.

2) Its insane sports betting / refund promotions.

philanthropy

Mattress Mack has always opened his heart, wallet and doors when a disaster strikes.

During Hurricane Harvey in 2017, the terrible flooding from Tropical Storm Imelda in 2019, and Hurricane Ida in 2021, Jim quickly opened his stores to displaced and distressed people. His supplies became lodgings and organizational posts, where hot meals and supplies were given out at his expense.

Getty

Sports betting

Mattress Mack is best known nationally for its aggressive sports betting and refund promotions.

His first headline-grabbing bet was placed ahead of the Super Bowl in 2014. If the Seahawks won, Jim offered to refund all $ 6,000 purchases made in the past two weeks. The Seahawks won, and Mack provided $ 7 million in furniture refunds.

Mack loves nothing more than betting on his beloved Houston Astros.

When the Astros won the World Series in 2017, it refunded $ 10 million worth of customer purchases.

At the start of the 2019 MLB season, Mack offered refunds for any purchase over $ 3,000 if the Astros made it to the World Series. You did it. These refunds cost over $ 20 million. To hedge his potential losses, Jim started betting that the Astros would win the series. By October 29, 2019, the night of Game 6, Jim had wagered $ 13 million on a series of bets. The Astros eventually lost the series, costing Jim an additional $ 13 million. OUCH.

Fast forward to the present. Jim has again offered to refund purchases over $ 3,000 made in the past two weeks if the Astros win the World Series. Gallery Furniture sold over $ 3,000 worth of $ 6 million worth of purchases last weekend alone, as customers hoped they were lucky. Mattress Mack claims his full refund liability will be around $ 22 million if the Astro wins.

To cover his liability, Jim has placed $ 3.45 million worth of bets on half a dozen sports bets. If the Astros wins, his bets will pay out just over $ 39 million. That’s a $ 35.6 million profit, which is more than enough to cover $ 22 million in refunds.

According to Caesars in Vegas (who would be hooked for roughly $ 20 million of his winnings), if Mattress Mack wins, it will be the largest single payout in sports betting history.

World Series Game 1 takes place Tuesday night at 5:00 p.m. PST, with the Astros hosting the Braves. Look out for Mattress Mack in the stands!

Is this bet insured?

After we published this article, some readers came up to say that Mack Mattress transportation could be insured, like hole-in-one or half-court shot insurance. From all the sources I found, Mack’s bet is NOT insured. If he ends up paying back $ 20 million, that’s a pure business expense.

So think about it –

The Astros essentially have a 50/50 chance of winning the World Series. Is there an insurance company that offers $ 20 million insurance that has a 50/50 chance of a hit? By comparison, according to some quick stats I found on Google, the national average for hitting a hole-in-one is 12,000 to 1. That’s LOTS of insurable odds.

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