The Manhattan-Iona Ending Last Night Might Have Been The Worst Sports Gambling Beat Of All Time

  • Matt Rudnitsky

After Iona grabbed an errant Manhattan shot and threw down an open-court dunk with six seconds to go in last night’s MAAC championship, the Gaels took an eight point lead. Eight point lead with six seconds to go. The Jaspers weren’t going to run the clock out in their final game, but the game and their season were both effectively over. If you were a casual viewer, you may have turned your TV off. And for you sports bettors, the point spread was Iona -4. Again, you would be justified to turn the game off, though you probably wanted to see the final buzzer, just in case. But honestly, what could possibly go wrong?

Well, (probably) the worst gambling beat of all time occurred next. Fast forward to 8:53.

Those are just highlights, so the following was lost. Following the dunk with six seconds to go, Iona retreated, half getting back on D and half celebrating their NCAA Tournament berth. They played decent enough defense, getting the clock down to just a couple of seconds. We don’t have video of this part, but I’m 90% sure that Iona stopped playing defense. The Gaels didn’t guard the ballhandler, and left arguably the Jaspers’ best shooter, Shane Richards, open for a corner 3-pointer. It went through the basket with 0.1 seconds left, to cut Iona’s lead to five. It was meaningless for the MAAC Championship, and it was meaningless from a betting perspective. Iona still covered the four-point spread.

But as I was about to actually shut off my TV, completely assured, there were whistles. Whistles are bad. The announcer mentioned that the Iona bench committed a technical foul by running onto the court. With 0.1 seconds left, up five. So, the clock operator, somehow, for some CONSPIRACY reason, was quick on the trigger, despite neither team having any incentive to stay on court in a five-point game with 0.1 seconds left. Yet Manhattan’s 86% free throw shooter took the line and hit both shots. It cut the lead to three, and somehow, Manhattan covered. The clock ran out immediately on the inbounds pass. The Jaspers hadn’t been within four points since there was 10:58 left in the second half.

So, remotes were hurled and screens were cracked on the screens of degenerates, nationwide. I think I even heard a scream from a sad soul in Sydney.

Check the play-by-play log.

The clock hit 0.2 seconds with Iona up eight, with a point spread of Iona -4. Manhattan covered. Excruciating.

I’m green, so I thought this was the worst beat of all time. But I saw two on Twitter that may have been worse. First, in college basketball.

@MrGameHunter says tickets were already being paid off in Vegas, because the score was reported as final for 10 minutes. Here’s the game story.

But that cover wasn’t meaningless in the real sports world, so I still give Iona-Manhattan a slight edge.

The only other rival I saw was in college football, where a mostly meaningless extra point was botched and turned into a very meaningful two-point conversion. Check that out here. I don’t think it’s worse, but it’s damn close.

You might be thinking, though: why is this the worst beat ever, and not an unbelievable stroke of luck? Because I told you guys to bet on Iona. In an article that claimed to tell you “How Not To Lose Your Money Gamblin’. ” Not, “How To Lose Money While Taking Precious Decades Off Your Life.”

I’m sorry, SportsGrid nation. Maybe we can get a group discount on TV repairs.

Note: At least you aren’t this guy. (I hope you aren’t this guy).