4 – 4 Superbowl 2010 Colts Versus Saints

Since The First AFL–NFL World Championship Game was played on January 15, 1967 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum betweeen the Green Bay Packers and Kansas City Chiefs, the Super Bowl has reigned as America’s premier sporting event.

In 2010 thee point spread favored the Indianapolis Colts AFC champs, but my heart hung with New Orleans and I bet $20 on the under of the over-under and the 5-point underdogs. My numbers in the 47th Street mini-pool are 4 – 4.

“I need two touchdowns by the Colts and 2 safeties by New Orleans in the first quarter to win,” I explained my chances to security guard at our jewelry counter on 47th Street in Midtown Manhattan.

“Those four scores add up to 14-4.” Jo-Jo had 5 large on the Colts. The ex-cop was still behind on his wagers. The Yankees 4-2 playoff victory over the Red Sox had hurt him in 2009. He hated the Yankees.

“Win $200.” I was counting on a miracle.

“No one’s going to get two safeties in a quarter, let alone a game.” Jo-Jo’s face was red. His doctor had ordered him to stop drinking beer. The big man agreed and continued drinking beer. His gut was huge.

“You wanna bet on it. 5 to 1 odds.”

Jo-Jo took the bet. $50 to my $10. He had retired from the force five years ago. His working security at the diamond exchange paid for his lifestyle of fifteen beers a day. Now down to none gambling was his only reason to walk into a sports bar.

“So in my dream world. The Saints scored a touchdown and a field goal to tie it up at the half.”

“Another $400. I like your thinking.” Jo-Jo was a Bronx native, but cheered for the Red Sox. He loved the fact that I called my son Fenway. “Then two TDs for the 3rd. Another two hundred and the defenses keeps the score tied until the end of the 4th.”

“Overtime.” I’m up $800. Someone else can win the grand prize in the extra time. “New Orleans kicker is injured and Tom Dempsey suits up for a 71-yarder.”

“Tom Dempsey has to be in his 70s.”

“No fucking way. Dempsey is only 63.” The kicker had score from 63 yards out to win a game for the New Orleans Saints over the Detroit Lions in 1970. I was 18. “Someone broke the record with a 65 yard field goal, but that was in pre-season.”

“Jason Elam tied the record, but that was in mile-high Denver, where the ball travels farther. Dempsey kicked it at Tulane, which is under sea level.” Jo-Jo knew his football. “Dempsey was one of the last straight-on kickers. Then again he had half a foot and basically clubbed the ball through the uprights.”

“How many times you think the announcers will mention his foot?”

“Every time New Orleans kicked a field goal.”

“Five times?”

“You wanna bet on it?”

I don’t normally bet, but it was the Superbowl and gambling on football an American tradition. Jo-Jo and I shook hands. The ex-cop went to make his rounds and I stood at the counter, hoping that another tradition ‘fixing the game’ helped me win all four quarters of the pool. $1000 was the price for flying to Thailand and Fenway was just starting to walk.

Go Saints.

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