Mark Cuban on S.B. tweet: No regrets

Mark Cuban

DALLAS -- As far as Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is concerned, Super Bowl XLVIII was extremely entertaining despite the Seattle Seahawks' blowout of the Denver Broncos.

That's because the billionaire spiced it up a bit with an off-the-cuff social media experiment after the Seahawks scored a safety on the game's first snap, claiming in a tweet that he'd won $20 million after getting a million-to-one odds on that happening from a Las Vegas casino.

I HAD SAFETY ON THE FIRST PLAY IN VEGAS !!!!!!!!!! 1mm to 1.. $20mm BABY. #Unbelievable

— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) February 2, 2014 Cuban's motivation for the false claim? It was a "prank for my own motivation" and an experiment to see if he could make a tweet go viral on Twitter's most popular night.

"Just because I could," Cuban said. "I said to my wife when that happened, 'Watch this, I'm going to make Twitter go nuts.' She was like, 'Don't do it!' I said, 'I've got to do it,' so I did it."

Cuban later tweeted "Psych" with a smiley face, but he deleted that tweet after a couple of hours because he was enjoying the reaction to his fictional wager winnings. The original tweet had been retweeted 24,445 times by Monday evening. The reaction on Twitter was a mix of skepticism and gullibility.

"It was fun," Cuban said. "It really, really was. Because the game was so bad, you had just as many people talking about my tweet, it seemed like. Not just as many, but it was just such a huge thing, it was fun."

Bovada put 40-to-1 odds on a safety being the first score. That sportsbook did not include a safety on its first snap among its prop bets.

Overall, fans who bet the first score would be a safety cashed in at 60-to-1, according to The Associated Press. Casinos paid out at 8-to-1 on prop bets for a safety at any point in the game.

It was the third year in a row that sportsbooks have been hit on the safety bet.

"The safety is no longer in my vocabulary," said Johnny Avello, who runs the sportsbook at Wynn.

As an NBA owner, Cuban is forbidden from betting on sports. However, he did not hear from the league office about his tweet.

"No, because they knew it was impossible," Cuban said, laughing. "What Vegas casino offers a million to one odds?"

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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