Golf pro John Daly had a chance to make an easy $1 million but had no problem turning it down.
It was 1995, and Daly was competing in the British Open, looked to try to win the second Major Championship of his career.
A daring gambler got the nerve to approach the then 29-year old and offered him a proposal. Intentionally lose and he will get paid $1 million.
“He says, ‘Look if you tank it, I’ll give you a million bucks.’”
A million dollars was a lot of money then, as it It is now, but Daly didn’t hesitate with his response. “I said, ‘Go…f–k yourself. No way.’”
This exchange was uncovered from a 2014 interview Daly diid for the show “In Depth with Graham Bensinger.”
It’s a darn good thing Daly did reject the offer, because he ended up winning the tournament and becoming a golf icon in the process.
Was it unique for Daly to be propositioned that way from gamblers? Not really. He would hear it often, and always gave them some version of the same reply. “People would come up and say, ‘Can you beat this guy at the British Open? And can you beat that guy?’ … I’m putting money on you.’ And I said, ‘I don’t care, but don’t get mad at me if it don’t work out.”
Here’s the ultimate irony. Daly himself was a renowned gambler. In the ESPN “30 for 30” documentary on him called “Hit it Hard,” Daly estimated he lost a staggering $50 million gambling during his lifetime.
“We figured I lost about $98 million and won about $45 million gambling.”
If he had taken that $1 million bribe back in 1995, there’s a darn good chance he would have lost it by the end of the week.