Sportress of Blogitude

Miami Heat’s Epic Fail Of A Regular Season Up To This Point Has Cost Florida Bar $30K

While most of the sports-watching public has been observing the Heat’s slow burn into complete implosion with devilish glee, the owners of one Hollywood, Florida bar is suffering through it and taking a hit where it counts: the cash register.

Prior to the Heat’s season opener against the Celtics, the proprietors of Whiskey Tango – John Todora and Bob Hartley – obviously feeling quite confident about the prospects of the Big Three’s impending success in the regular season, held a promotion at their bar where they offered to pay their customer’s bar tabs (up to $25, natch) if the Heat lost the game. As you recall, the Heat somehow lost the the Celtics by a score of 88-80 (ha) that October 27th night, and in doing so, caused Whiskey Tango to refund approximately $4,000 to its customers that evening.

But it gets worse. Or more amusing, depending on your perspective.

Via Sports Biz with Darren Rovell:

“We figured, why not make our bar a home for Miami Heat games,” Todora told CNBC. “As a fan, you can’t lose. If they win, you go home happy. If you lose, we’ve at least compensated you in some way.”

Fair enough. But the end result was likely not what the owners expected. Perhaps sensing that the Grand Experiment being conducted by the Heat would not go quite so swimmingly as initially imagined, Whiskey Tango did what any sensible business would have done after a promotional stunt went so clearly awry: they continued it for the balance of the season. Given that the Heat have hilariously under-performed to a delightful 9-8 record, what has this Bad Idea Promotion cost the owners, you ask?

“We’ve refunded about $30,000 worth of drinks,” Todora said.

Brilliant. The owners further informed CNBC that they did not have the foresight to take out any insurance on their publicity stunt, but before you feel too bad for these guys, according to the article, due to the considerable markup on alcohol, they are still coming out ahead, to the tune of $20,000, as the cost of the booze served to the customers was in the realm of a paltry $10,000. Even more so, their kooky promotional plan has generated far more publicity than spending the same amount of money in conventional advertising.

Well played, Whiskey Tango. Well played. I wish I could figure out a way to profit off the Heat’s amusingly awful performance thus far. At the same time, watching the team that was supposed to win 70 games but has instead played like crap is in its own way satisfaction enough.

Miami Heat Costs One Florida Bar $30,000 [Sports Biz with Darren Rovell]