Yes, there are $5 NCAA basketball and hockey pools run from the depths of the Star Tribune sports department. But we consider those friendly investments rather than flat-out gambling on sports.
Two things happened in recent days that are reminding us to remind you to never bet on sports.
First was the Dustin Johnson withdrawal from the Masters after he suffered a fall on Wednesday and withdrew from the tournament. There was a dust-up afterward over whether those who had bet on Johnson in "Futures Bets" should have their money refunded. The casinos is Las Vegas were split on the issue.
Here's the deal: Futures bets are typically made well before an event starts and include the risk of non-participation. It's a possibility that often comes up when horseplayers look ahead and try to choose a Kentucky Derby winner before the entrants for the race are official. But it can also come up when a college team is banned from postseason play.
As this ESPN story notes: "Future bet wagers note that 'all bets are action' regardless of whether a golfer plays."
Here were the two views expressed from Las Vegas to ESPN on the Johnson case, which was a big deal because Johnson was the favorite entering the tournament:
"It's the risk you take," MGM assistant sports book manager Jeff Stonebeck said. "If it's a weekly tournament, it's more likely that a sports book will return a bettor's money."
But some sports books figured that making an exception was good for business. At the Wynn, sports book manager Johnny Avello said: "Under normal circumstances, we wouldn't give back the money, but for the last couple years, for the majors, we've decided to give back the money if a golfer doesn't tee off. It turns out to be such a hassle not to do the refund because for the next three months all you hear from those customers is about the money they lost."
The full ESPN report is here.
Meanwhile, we hope you didn't take the New York Knicks and the 12 1/2 points they were getting against Memphis on Friday. There are no words for this, so we'll go straight to the video of what happened when the Knicks were up by 10 with the clock running out -- and Wade Baldwin IV Grizzlies player casually dribbling the ball.
He was just dribbling out the clock, right?
Watch this (and don't say we didn't warn you):
Now THAT'S how you run the score up pic.twitter.com/ErjmbKOK8i— Fastbreak Breakfast (@fastbreakbreak) April 8, 2017