During the WNBA All-Star Game, operator Circa Sports moved the over/under total by 53 points, making a historic mistake.
The Las Vegas sportsbook originally set the over/under total at 248.5; however, an hour before the game started this changed to 195.5.
According to ESPN, the change in the points total was the “largest shift that multiple veteran bookmakers could ever recall.”
ESPN reported that Sportsbook Director for Circa Sports, Matt Metcalf, saw an opportunity for the brand to post the first total, since there were no betting lines anywhere else.
At around 7am, Metcalf landed at an opening total of 248.5 as he looked at the total points scored in the previous All-Star Game to inform his decision.
However, he soon realised the WNBA All-Stars would face the US national team, which is preparing for the Olympics and might take the game more seriously.
But the number was already up and this even led other sportsbooks in the US and internationally to start posting over/under totals similar to Metcalf’s estimation, as one person bet on the over and pushed the total to 252.5.
Metcalf said he felt this bet was to “dummy up” the market, as professional bettors sometimes bet higher to mislead bookmakers.
As time went on and with virtually every sportsbook displaying a high total, bettors everywhere started to bet under and the line total began to plummet, which resulted in a 53-point drop.
In most cases when bookmakers make mistakes, they have void bets placed on these numbers and claim there was an error.
But Metcalf said he “made a horrific number, hung it and took bets.”