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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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Let him cook! Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

The Houston Rockets are in the midst of a rebuild. Jalen Green and Kevin Porter Jr are studs. KPJ just signed a four-year extension with the team. Other guys like Jabari Smith Jr, Kenyon Martin Jr, Alperen Sengun, Josh Christopher, Tari Eason, and Jae'Sean Tate are really good pieces to surround Green and KPJ with. The only issue with this group: they're REALLY young! Tate is the elder statesman at 27 of the young nucleus. Most are barely old enough to buy a drink. Some still aren't old enough! They're a bunch of green bananas waiting to turn yellow to slightly brown and be ripe enough for consumption.

We need to give it time. Just like bananas, they take time to ripen. Coach Stephen Silas is known for developing young players. His most prized student is the star player for that team in South Oklahoma up 45. Number 77 for that team credited Silas with helping him realize his All-Pro potential while Silas was a part of the coaching staff there. To a man, all his former players credit him with being a positive influence on their careers. So why are fans in a rush to get rid of him?

When you look at the Rockets' record over the last few years, it's gross. Sure, they've been a lottery team the last couple of seasons, but that was by design. As part of the Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook trades, they gave away pick swap rights. Had they not been that bad, they wouldn't have been able to draft Green or Smith Jr. Those two guys are building blocks for the future, along with KPJ. Giving those picks away would've put this team further down the totem pole of developing themselves into a contender. Losing pays off when you can hit on high lottery picks.

If you give a chef dirt, bread, ham, molded cheese, and spoiled mayo, can you expect anything else but a nasty ham sandwich? How about if the chef was given a steak that is almost rotten, potatoes with root growth, and spoiled butter? Could you expect a better meal than the sandwich? Yes! However, that meal may still cause a stomachache. Now, give said chef a full complement of gourmet groceries and guess what you'll get?

This is why I say let Silas cook. He's the perfect coach for this group of kids. He can teach them all the fundamentals of the game at this level and help them grow into their full potential. If there's a change to be made on the sidelines, move Silas into a front office role, but DO NOT get rid of him! Guys like him are too valuable. Why do you think Mark Cuban hated losing him, but knew he couldn't retain him because he had a head coach already? Cuban knew what he had in Silas and what Silas did for Luka Doncic. He can do something similar for the Rockets if given the time to work his magic.

Should Tilman Fertita find the need to move on, I'd look for a more experienced coach who can guide them from bottom of the playoff ladder into top four in the West and real contenders. For now, Silas is the head chef. Continue giving him the groceries he needs, and he'll continue giving these kids the lessons they need to develop. Changing the coach now could stunt their growth. Let him cook!

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