DirecTV airs Games of Thrones early, demolishes prop betting
There’s a reason why many sportsbooks don’t offer proposition betting on the outcome of reality TV shows and dramas and DirecTV (an American cable provider) proved that point this weekend. According to a report on TMZ, DirecTV accidentally aired the much anticipated premiere episode of Game of Thrones four hours ahead of its scheduled time Sunday night.
In doing so, DirecTV inadvertently provided some very sharp bettors with all the information they needed to take some online sportsbooks to the cleaners.
So far, DirecTV hasn’t made any comment as to why the episode aired so far ahead of its scheduled time, but it was manna from Heaven for those infatuated with proposition betting. An unidentified spokesperson for SportsBetting.ag pointed out that the odds on the wager, “Which character will speak first?” changed dramatically in the hours ahead of the scheduled premiere with Tyrion dropping from 4/1 to 1/1 over the course of the day. (Tyrion was, in fact, the first character to speak on the episode.)
That same spokesperson also floated the idea that the accidental airing might not have been so accidental saying, “We assume that someone with inside knowledge was either betting heavily or telling all of their friends to do so. This type of stuff does occur in our industry, and we obviously can’t verify if there was a leak, but the betting action pointed to one.”
Whatever the case, SportsBook.ag says it lost in the low five figures on the “Who will speak first?” wager alone.
In the United States, wagering on the outcome of pre-determined events such as TV dramas and reality shows is not legal…for this very reason.