James Adducci flew to Las Vegas from his home in Wisconsin on April 9 with the notion of placing an $85,000 wager on golfer Tiger Woods to win the Masters. Woods had not won one of the four PGA major tournaments since 2008 and was at 14-to-1 odds when the bet was placed at the William Hill US sportsbook inside the SLS Las Vegas.
Adducci admitted his first-ever sports bet was a longshot.
"Golf was so special for my dad and me," Adducci said.
We know how it ended.
Woods' historic victory at the Masters Sunday in Augusta, Georgia, earned Adducci a $1.19 million payout. The win represented the largest golf payout in William Hill history.
The 43-year-old Woods shot a 2-under 70 for a one-stroke victory and his 15th major championship, his first since the 2008 U.S. Open, capping a remarkable recovery from debilitating injuries and embarrassing personal problems.
Woods triumphed in last year's Tour Championship, his first victory of any kind since 2013.
"This is a story for the ages," said William Hill US CEO Joe Asher. "Tiger climbs back to the top, and a guy from Wisconsin, on his first sports bet ever, wins over $1 million betting on him. We congratulate both James and Tiger on their epic wins."
Adducci returned to Las Vegas Monday to collect a $1.275 million check (inclusive of the $1.19 million payout plus the original $85,000 stake) at the SLS.
Back on August 13, Woods opened as a co-favorite at 12-to-1 odds (along with Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka, and Rory McIlroy) to win the Masters.
William Hill US spokesman Michael Grodsky said the next largest payout on Woods winning the Masters heading into the weekend was a $2,600 wager placed on April 1 when the odds were at 13-to-1. The bet netted the gambler $33,800.
Before Sunday's final round started, Woods was available at 3-to-1 odds to capture his fifth Green Jacket, which is awarded to the Masters champion.
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