Jim McIngvale, better known as “Mattress Mack,” has made history with a $5 million wager on the Cincinnati Bengals, the single-largest legal sports bet ever. The previous record was set with a $4.9 million bet on the Super Bowl in 2002.
The single money-line bet was made on the Caesars Sportsbook app in Louisiana, which launched mobile sports gambling on Jan. 28.
Last week, McIngvale, the owner of Gallery Furniture in Houston, drove across the Texas border into Louisiana to make a $4.5 million bet on the Bengals. If the Cincinnati team wins, he will collect $16.2 million.
McIngvale is known for making multimillion-dollar bets on big games. He lost a $3.25 million bet on the Houston Astros in the World Series last year and a $6 million bet on Alabama to win the college football championship in January.
Mack told CNBC in an interview that he wagers on sports as an insurance hedge for the sales promotions he runs to draw customers into his Houston-based furniture stores. The current promotion promises a refund on purchases of more than $3,000 if the Bengals win the Super Bowl.