They say money won is twice as sweet as money earned – and who are we to disagree?
Whether you’re putting down a single bob or laying a million bucks on the table, it’s hard to match the sheer exhilaration of sports betting: a unique realm where entertainment and competition converge; where punters draw on skill and chance to try and take down the house.
Everyone loves a wager – a point well illustrated by the number of sports betting celebrities. From A-list actors to chart-topping musicians, so many celebrities love to bet on sports.
However much you’re staking, every sports bettor deserves the very best price every single time they place a bet. TXODDS is the leading provider of sports betting data and technology, with an odds API feed of the most accurate, low-latency odds available.
Anyone, celebrity or otherwise, can head straight to TXODDS to check they are getting the very best price. For over 20 years, TXODDS has been the go-to odds feed provider for the betting industry – and the partner of choice for sportsbook customers around the world.
Read on, as we list 10 celebrities who love to bet on sports.
One of music’s biggest stars, Drake moonlights as one of sport’s more prominent bettors. The ‘Hotline Bling’ singer certainly isn’t shy of a flutter – and it would be fair to say his record attests to the old adage, ‘You win some, you lose some.’ He put down around $1 billion in the space of a year – claiming big paydays on the 2023 Super Bowl (around £1.25 million), UFC champion Israel Adesanya (beating Jared Cannonier by decision, £113,000 returned £750,000) and a three-part NFL accumulator (Bills, Cowboys and Chiefs to win in week four, £240,000 returned £1.67 million).
But for every red-letter day, there’s been a head-in-your-hands moment. Drake shipped £300,000 on Jake Paul knocking out Tommy Fury, close to £1.7 million on Adesanya beating Alex Pereira and lost £837,000 on the World Cup final after France managed to take the game to extra time.
Drake clearly relishes going up against the bookies – but it would be a stretch to call him lucky. The ‘Drake Curse’ became one of the internet’s more popular memes – after a series of athletes or teams he posed with or publicly backed went on to lose high-profile clashes. AS Roma even joked that their players were banned from taking photos with Drake: we probably won’t be asking him for a tip anytime soon.
2. Matt Lucas
Many of the names on this list prefer to lay down gaudy stakes, but ‘Little Britain’ actor Matt Lucas understands that little punts can offer big entertainment – and sometimes, big rewards. In 2022, Lucas bagged 175/1 odds on Arsenal’s Eddie Nketiah to score first and Leeds’ Luke Ayling to be sent off during the two clubs’ Premier League clash. Incredibly, the bet came off: Lucas’ £2 stake returned £352 – which he promptly donated to a foodbank backed by the Leeds United Trust. Always one to share goodwill, he even took to Twitter to expound his betting strategy: ‘Occasionally I place small bets on unlikely events with long odds…’ Don’t we all, Matt.
3. Floyd Mayweather
With a moniker like ‘Money’, it should come as no surprise that Floyd Mayweather isn’t shy of a punt or two – nor is he one to wager small. In 2015, he went on a four-day hot streak betting on the NBA and boxing, turning $350,00 into $827,272.73. For most, that would be a pretty big win – but for Floyd, it was just another day at the office. The previous year, he took home $4.7 million in the space of a month betting on the NFL. And in 2017, he took to Instagram, posting a picture of himself with stacks of cash which he claimed to have won backing his friend Isaiah Thomas. Mayweather is less forthcoming about his misses, but Maxim shared a rumour in 2018 that he was down $50 million due to gambling losses. If true, it hasn’t perturbed the superstar fighter, who has recently used his knowledge of the fight game to claim big wins on Poirier over McGregor, Bivol over Canelo and Lopez over Lomachenko.
4. Georgia Toffolo
Onetime Made in Chelsea star Georgia Toffolo made headlines in 2022 when she won big on the first race of the Cheltenham Festival. Correctly picking the first past the line and the horse that would finish second, Toffolo claimed a whopping £37,500 on a £2,500 bet. Nor was it a shot in the dark: a couple of months later, she bagged £6,500 on another 1-2 finish; and took home a slightly smaller pot after this year’s Grand National, where she laid down £10 each way on 8-1 favourite Corach Rambler.
5. 50 Cent
Queens-born rapper Curtis ‘50 Cent’ Jackson burst into the public consciousness in 2003 with the release of his debut album ‘Get Rich or Die Tryin’’: unsurprisingly, he isn’t afraid to risk it all in search of a big payday. Back in 2012, he claimed over $500,000 when his hometown Giants beat the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL playoffs. Never one to shy away, he then offered producer Birdman a $1 million wager on the Super Bowl game between the Giants and the New England Patriots. He won that one too.
More recently, he put down $1.6 million on Floyd Mayweather proving too much for Manny Pacquiao in their 2015 superfight. That said, boxing hasn’t always been fruitful for ‘Fiddy’, who clearly understands the nature of the beast. In 2006, he rapped ‘I lost money when I bet on Roy, won money when I bet on Floyd’. Well, you can’t win ‘em all.
6. Lee Westwood
Plenty of punters have won money backing ‘Westy’ on the golf course, though probably not as much as the man himself has claimed on the horses. Westwood is a real racing enthusiast, and in 2020 admitted being reduced to tears when his own horse Yorkhill came in at 66-1. That victory netted Westwood a cool £28,000 – and was far from his only big win. In 2019, Westwood turned £240 into £48,000 by picking a string of winners at the Cheltenham Festival. Clearly, the Cotswolds are a happy hunting ground: the year before, he took home £22,000 at Cheltenham after a string of predictions came good. Westwood isn’t shy of sharing advice either – so if you ever spot him at a meet, you might want to ask for a tip or two. You could certainly do worse.
7. Ashton Kutcher
While many of the celebs on this list are largely driven by the thrill of the chase, Ashton Kutcher is a different kettle of fish. He takes a business-minded, data-driven approach to betting – in 2013, Kutcher told Esquire that he once placed bets for ‘the largest national sports betting syndicate in America’. ‘I basically just placed bets for half a season,’ Kutcher revealed. ‘We cleared like $750,000 in four weeks of college football, it was pretty fun.’ Unfortunately for Ashton, the Vegas bookmakers soon cottoned on to the scheme and barred him from action.
But if you can’t beat the house, why not join it? In 2015, Kutcher backed the online platform Unikrn – which allows punters to bet on sport, eSports and video games. With the company going from strength to strength ever since, it has proven a pretty sound gamble.
8. Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson is well-known as one of the greatest golfers of the 21st Century, yet it would be fair to suggest that the sport hasn’t always been his sole preoccupation. After being paired with Mickelson in the Hyundai Team Matches event, Steve Flesch claimed ‘He could not have cared any less about what were doing on the golf course. He was definitely more concerned about who was winning the football games and who was covering the spread.’
He’s put his football knowledge to good use. In 2001, he backed the unfancied Baltimore Ravens to take the Super Bowl at 28-1 – winning $560,000 in the process. Nor did he limit his punts to the sportsbook: later the same year, he took $500 off fellow pro Mike Weir during a round of golf – by betting that Jim Furyk would chip in from the bunker. That earned him a reprimand from the PGA, who were equally annoyed when they discovered he was betting on course with CBS broadcaster Gary McCord.
Clearly though, luck hasn’t always been on Mickelson’s side. A federal audit conducted in 2022 claimed that he racked up $40 million worth of losses between 2010 and 2014.
9. Charlie Sheen
Notorious Hollywood hellraiser Sheen used to enjoy a punt – with onetime wife Denise Richards claiming he would bet $200,000 every week. Like many regular gamblers, Sheen would often go on gut feeling – indeed, one premonition led to him placing $1 million on Manny Pacquiao. ‘I had a dream a week before he was going to beat De La Hoya like a drum,’ he told the New York Times.
Although Sheen won the bet, it ultimately proved a springboard towards him ending his betting career. ‘I was like pfffft, whatever. I felt nothing,’ he reflected. ‘I went, okay, there’s nothing left for me here.’ Sheen has since described himself as a ‘retired gambler’.
10. Leonardo DiCaprio
Revered actor DiCaprio is said to be a keen sports bettor – fans can often spot him courtside at The Lakers, and he’s also known to have a soft spot for soccer, golf, hockey and tennis. Unlike many on this list, he tends to keep his bets close to his chest – with one notable exception. While filming The Revenant, DiCaprio and fellow crew member Tom Hardy had a friendly bet on whether DiCaprio would receive an Oscar nomination for his performance. Hardy lost: he can now be seen proudly sporting a ‘Leo Knows All’ tattoo.
As the number-one sports betting data provider, TXODDS can help provide the most accurate betting odds. Anyone seeking the best odds – or looking for either real-time odds or historical sports betting data – should head straight to TXODDS.