Drake wins huge bet after Toronto Maple Leafs lost to Lightning

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Drake just pocketed $800,000 thanks to the Toronto Maple Leafs’ loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night.

The Toronto rapper revealed on his Instagram story last week that he poured down $400,000 in his belief that the NHL playoff series would last to seven games in the first round. After Toronto lost 4-3 in overtime, Drake walked away with $1.2 million.

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It is important to note that the Hotline Bling star has not yet made any bets on Game 7 public. But Drake has a history of publicly embracing the teams he loves. As a global ambassador for the Toronto Raptors, the Grammy winner is a fixture at NBA games, including the club’s loss in Game 6 to the Philadelphia 76ers last month.

And Leafs fans might want Drake to sit this out. The team has not advanced to the second round since 2004 and is now 0-8 in elimination matches in the last five playoffs.

In the past year, it has been unscientifically proven that Drake’s endorsement of sports teams shows that they are headed for failure.

In 2019, he appeared in Maple Leafs gear during Game 4 of the NHL playoffs between Toronto and the Boston Bruins and guess what? The Leafs lost 6-4.

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Then-Leafs coach Mike Babcock weighed in when talking about a post-game curse. “I’ve heard a lot of things since I’ve been here, but that’s one of the craziest things,” Babcock said when asked about his opinion on the curse. “The game is played by us on the ice. There is no curse.

“Every time someone wants to come and support us, we all join in.”

But the “Drake Curse” is also blamed for losses suffered by the University of Alabama, Serena Williams, Conor McGregor and Paris Saint-Germain.

More recently, Drake bet on friend Kevin Durant’s Brooklyn Nets to beat the Boston Celtics (they were swept after losing 116-112 in Game 4). Last weekend, he dropped $427,000 on MMA fighter Justin “The Highlight” Gaethje to defeat Charles Oliveira at UFC 274 (Gaethje lost).

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After losing $275,000 to Jorge Masvidal in March at UFC 272, his opponent Colby Covington mocked the singer for his loss. “Let’s talk about all the money Drake lost tonight,” Covington said. “He has to start selling those s— albums again to get the money back.”

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Meanwhile, the Leafs’ other megafan, Justin Bieber, remains remarkably quiet.

When the pandemic-shortened NHL season began last year, Born-born singer boastfully predicted that the Leafs would raise Lord Stanley’s Cup for the first time since 1967.

“This is the year,” he declared alongside an image of the team crest.

But after cheering for the Leafs pretty much all season and regularly posting encouraging messages on his Instagram page, he was quiet during the team’s first round against the Habs, which Toronto lost after taking a 3-1 lead in the series had lost.

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“The Leafs lost because Justin Bieber hasn’t posted a random old Leafs logo on Instagram in a while,” one person theorized.

So wait, maybe Leafs Nation should be hoping to see on social media in the coming days: Drake is making a huge bet on the Lightning and Bieber taking to Instagram to declare, “Did I say last year was the year? I meant this one is the year.”

Or maybe the team will put its playoff demons to bed once and for all.

In an interview with the Sun Early in the season, Leafs all-star center Auston Matthews said the team had learned from its mistakes after the season.

“I know that before us we have faith in ourselves, and we feel like we’re going to get it done and that we’re going to break through. Regardless of our failures, champions and legends are made of how you respond to failure, not success,” said Matthews.

We’ll find out Saturday night when the puck falls between the Leafs and Lightning for Game 7 at Scotiabank Arena.

mdaniell@postmedia.com

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