In a twist that has the Kansas City Chiefs’ faithful wringing their hands, a significant wager has been placed on their team’s victory in the forthcoming Super Bowl LVIII against the San Francisco 49ers. The sum involved? A heart-pumping $1.15 million. But what has the fans’ pulses racing is not the hefty bet itself, but the identity of the bettor: none other than Drake, the Canadian maestro of music and, if legend has its say, misfortune in the sports betting world.
In a post adorned with his betting slip on Instagram, dated the 9th of February, Drake didn’t mince words about his loyalties. With the flick of a pen and a nod to the loyal fans of Taylor Swift, he quipped, “I can’t bet against the swifties.”
This lighthearted jest belies a more sinister narrative that has coalesced around Drake’s sporting endorsements — the so-called “Drake Curse.” It’s a saga woven by fans worldwide that posits a simple but chilling axiom: when Drake shows his support, the scales of fate tip invariably towards defeat.
Take, for instance, the fate of Sean Strickland, the middleweight UFC champ, who on January 20th — with Drake’s $700K riding on his fists — tasted bitter defeat at the hands of Dricus du Plessis. Or consider the half a million dollars that evaporated into the ether when Israel Adesanya failed to overcome Strickland at UFC 293, despite Drake’s financial backing.
Indeed, last year bore witness to a lore-worthy litany of Drake’s ill-starred bets. Logan Paul, a boxer buoyed by a cool $1.3 million of Drake’s confidence, skirted technical defeat only through his opponent’s disqualification. The 2022 ledger tells a tale of a rumored $4 million slipping through the rapper’s fingers, including a $1 million shadow cast by Argentina’s World Cup triumph over France.
Against this backdrop of mishaps, it’s easy to forget Drake’s brush with betting success — a $700K boon when the Chiefs trumped the Eagles in last year’s Super Bowl, or his prescient pick of the Denver Nuggets for the 2023 NBA title, pocketing a cool $830K.
But as anyone aware of the peculiarities of human nature knows, superstitions are not easily dispelled by the light of reason or success. To some, the outcome of Super Bowl LVIII has been preordained, another piece in a grand conspiracy puzzle that reaches into the murky depths of political intrigue.
Recollections of the Super Bowl of 2020 are peppered with exhilarating images: Patrick Mahhomes’ resolute passes that clawed back the lead, Damien Williams’ electrifying dash to the endzone, Kendall Fuller’s interception that sealed a 50-year-long thirst for victory.
Should the tableau of Super Bowl LVIII bestow victory upon the 49ers, seeking solace in blame will be a temptation for the Chiefs cohort — but if history is our guide, it would be a folly to lay it at the feet of Drake, a spectator in the coliseum of sport, spurring on his modern-day gladiators.