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Ken Hoffman bets against ESPN 97.5 host's 3-point shootout success

ESPN 97.5's Raheel Ramzanali (pictured in this photo illustration) looks to sink at least 14 shots. Raheel Ramzanali/Twitter

This article originally appeared on CultureMap.

UPDATE: Official results: Raheel made 11 of 25 shots, and the over/under was 13-1/2 ... so "Under" won the bet.

There also was a prop bet: "Will Raheel make three shots in a row during the shootaround?" He did not. So "No" won the bet.

"I am disappointed that I didn't make more shots, and I must admit that I got nervous when I made two in a row. I was never able to hit the money ball," Raheel explained.

"Hey, I'm not happy, either. I bet on myself to hit three in a row."

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Ten minutes after noon Friday, October 26, ESPN 97.5 host Raheel Ramzanali will shoot 25 3-point basketball shots at the Downtown Club at the Met. He believes that he will make at least 14 of them.

You can bet on it.

Or, like me, against it.

The online gambling site, My Bookie, is posting odds and taking action on Raheel’s 3-point accuracy. Yes, you can wager real money on Raheel. They’ve set the over/under at 13-1/2, meaning if Raheel sinks 14 or more shots, the “over” wins. If he makes 13 or fewer, the “under” takes the money.

He will shoot the 25 shots like the NBA 3-Point Contest — five shots from five different spots beyond the 3-point arc. 

There is a $100 limit on the over/under wager.  Let’s not get too crazy here, Raheel is a talk show host, not a pro athlete (his deluded fantasy doesn’t count).

There is an interesting prop bet, too: Will Raheel make three shots in a row during the shoot-around? You can bet up to $100 on that, too.

Naturally, I pulled Raheel into the Gow Media interrogation room, aimed a bright light in his face, and grilled him for insider information. (Talk to me. Look, we can do this the easy way, or we can do this the hard way.”)

“I’ve played basketball since I was 5 years old. I played for Clements High School,” Raheel says.

Wait, did you actually “play” for Clements High?

“Okay, I was on the team at Clements High, but I played a lot in daily practices. And now I play twice a week in an adult recreation league,” Raheel clarifies. “I’m a much better player now, I’m much stronger. I wish I could go back and play high school ball. I’d get more than 5 minutes a game this time.”

I’m in. Eric Sandler, CultureMap’s food editor and I set up a My Bookie account. We’re betting $50 on the “under,” that he’ll make fewer than 13-1/2 shots, and $50 on yes, he will make three shots in a row. 

Here’s why I think Raheel will come up short of the over/under. The NBA 3-point line is 22 feet in the corners and 23.75 feet at the top of the key. Raheel brags that he’s a dead-eye shooter. Okay, but the NBA 3-point line is not a natural jump shot for an amateur – yes, Raheel you are an amateur. He will have to put extra oomph to reach the hoop from 23 feet. That will cut into his accuracy.

Steph Curry may be the greatest 3-point shooter in NBA history. Last year, he made 46 percent of his 3-point attempts. For Raheel to go “over,” he will have to make 56 percent of his shots. Raheel waved that fun fact away, “I am better than Steph Curry.”

Remember what I said about deluded fantasy?

“The Met has NBA leather balls. Uh-uh, I’m bringing my own soft college ball. Another thing, I’ve heard the rims at the Met are nice and loose, so the ball has a better chance of falling in,” Raheel said. “I’ve done a few practice sessions and I’m telling you, I’m going over.”

What’s a five-letter word for “deluded” that start with a C and ends with a Y, and is worth 19 points in Scrabble? I’ll spot you the Z.

Continue reading on CultureMap.

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Houston gets the lopsided win

Valdez, Astros dominate the Angels in 10-0 rout in Anaheim

Framber Valdez was dominant against the Angels on Monday night. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

With a series win at home over the weekend, the Astros started their final regular-season road trip on Monday, squaring off against the Angels in Anaheim. They held the momentum firmly in their favor all night, dominating both sides of the game to start the series with a victory.

Final Score: Astros 10, Angels 0

Astros' Record: 89-61, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Framber Valdez (11-5)

Losing Pitcher: Jaime Barria (2-4)

Siri leads off with a bang

With Jose Altuve being given the night off, Houston gave Jose Siri a shot at the leadoff spot, and he delivered to start the opener in Anaheim. He launched a missile to left field, 426 feet, to put the Astros in front 1-0 before the Angels could record an out. Later that same inning, they strung together three singles, the third being an RBI by Carlos Correa to double the lead.

Valdez goes seven shutout innings

That gave Framber Valdez a lead to work with as he stepped on the rubber in the bottom of the inning, and he didn't give it up as he would post a dominant start. He started with a 1-2-3 first, worked around a couple of singles in the second, then used a double play to face the minimum in the third.

He retired Los Angeles in order again in the fourth, stranded a two-out single in the fifth and a single and a walk in the sixth. He had his worst inning of the night in the seventh, giving up a leadoff single then loading the bases on back-to-back two-out walks. He'd escape the jam, though, keeping the shutout alive and finalizing his impressive line: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, 98 P.

Astros take the opener in lopsided fashion

Houston tacked on an insurance run in the top of the eighth, getting a one-out double by Correa to set up an RBI single by Marwin Gonzalez, pushing the lead to 3-0. Things escalated from there, as another single put two on base for Martin Maldonado, who blew the game open with a three-run homer to make it a six-run lead.

Brooks Raley took over for Valdez in the bottom of the inning, and with a 1-2-3 inning, made it his eighth appearance in a row without allowing a run. The Astros didn't let up in the top of the ninth, getting two hits and a walk to load the bases before a grand slam by Gonzalez made it 10-0 and gave him 5 RBI in a two-inning span. Seth Martinez, called up by the Astros earlier in the day, made his big-league debut in the bottom of the ninth and closed out the lopsided win to put Houston's magic number at 6.

Up Next: The second of this four-game set will be another 8:38 PM Central start on Tuesday. Jose Urquidy (7-3, 3.38 ERA) will take the mound for the Astros, going opposite Packy Naughton (0-2, 4.32 ERA) for the Angels.

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