Could this be the future of sports gambling?
A fat, Jewish kid from Chicago, by his own account, Robert Gorodetsky is also a 25-year-old college dropout who has emerged as one of the most compelling and controversial, albeit largely unknown, figures in sports.
He wears a black cap with white letters that spell GAMBLR., and like his personal logo with the missing “e” suggests, Gorodetsky is no ordinary betting man.
Sitting courtside at NBA games and behind home plate at Major League Baseball games. Canoodling with beautiful women, including a former Miss Utah and a former Miss California. Sharing photos of himself with athletes such as Odell Beckham Jr. and celebrities such as Drake. Using “gut instinct” to bet upwards of $100,000 on games. Winning and losing millions of dollars in what he calls “BigRobStyle.”
In seven days of being shadowed by USA TODAY Sports in October and November, Gorodetsky wagered well over $1 million on a range of sporting events and tens of thousands of dollars more on blackjack and roulette.
He bets upwards of $350,000 on NFL Sundays, $100,000 on MLB games and tens of thousands of dollars on the NBA, WNBA, tennis, soccer and high school sports — even on “smoking hot” women whom Gorodetsky calls dimes. (Dimes, as in perfect 10s. Get it?)
“You see this girl, right?’’ Gorodetsky said. “We’ll set a line like Vegas does. Can you get her or not?’’
Photos of beautiful women populate his Instagram account (@bigrobstyle), along with photos of winning betting tickets that bear Gorodetsky’s ID number. He rarely posts losing tickets, explaining, “If you have a hot wife, you’re going to show her off, right? If she’s ugly, she’s staying at home. You know what I’m saying?’’
With photos, videos and text messages to support his story, Gorodetsky said he has gambled with Drake, played blackjack with Beckham and formed relationships with other professional athletes who, according to Gorodetsky, do not want to be associated with him publicly because it could draw unwanted scrutiny.
But Gorodetsky isn’t hiding his ostentatious ways. In fact, with momentum building to legalize sports gambling outside of Nevada, Gorodetsky and his inner circle think he could emerge as America’s leading sports bettor and sell his advice to gamblers across the country.
“When it goes legal, we’re going to be billionaires,’’ said Elo Hankham, one of Gorodetsky’s confidants. “We’re the No. 1 entity, and we’re going to have a market share of at least 5% of a $150 billion industry.’’