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The night the lights went out - A theory on the Superbowl power outage

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There are those who watched as the lights went out last night in the Louisiana Superdome and thought, 'oh well, that's crazy!' Then there are those who saw it and thought, 'Wait a second, what's going on here?' This article is geared towards the latter. The Superbowl last night was basically one or two big plays away from being one of the best, if not the best, ever played. If San Francisco had managed to bury the rock in the end-zone with those two minutes to go, it would have been the greatest comeback of all time. Instead we are left with a pretty memorable event anyway, partially because of that power outage that happened just after the start of the second half.

Essentially, as we said in the opener, your interest in that crazy event, the lights going out, can go one of two ways. Either, ‘Gosh that was funky’ or ‘Wait a second, this is a bit odd’.

Maybe I watched too many X-Files in my formative years. Maybe I read one too many crime novels. However, as soon as the lights went out, my mind went into full Mulder and Scully mode. To help you join me on this leap of faith, all I have to do is tell you one thing. The lights also went out, just before half time, in the big English Premier League match the night before, between Fulham and Manchester United, at Craven Cottage in London.

Read more: True confessions of a San Francisco 49ers fanatic

Coincidence?

Maybe this is going to be an eye opener for you, but sadly, corruption is rampant in sports, even in the major sports we all know and love. The main perpetrators (and we stress, main. There are plenty of organised gangs all over the World trying to fix sporting events) are in the Balkans, South East Asia and Italy. The governing bodies of the World’s major sports are woefully ill equipped to tackles these gangs, and are working in horrible de-synchronization from the police and the bookmarkers and their teams of anti-fraud experts, when an alliance between the three could crush sporting fraud tomorrow.

A couple of points to note before we try and take you on a leap of faith as to what happened last night.

First, floodlight tampering is not new. Gangs from South East Asia have tried this on several occasions of note in England, during both big and small matches (high and low league levels). Authorities in the UK have literally caught Asian betting syndicate gang members red handed as they attempted to knock the lights out at soccer matches.

Why, you might ask?

Two simple answers. One, in other parts of the World (Thailand, Singapore, China etc) you can actually bet on odd events like, yes, you guessed it, the floodlights failing at a match. With that in mind, it is pretty simple to imagine corrupt individuals arranging for the lights to go out in London and New Orleans, isn’t it? The second answer is a bit more contrived, however, personally, I would imagine this to be closer to the truth.

In Ireland and the UK bookmakers have a rule that if a game is suspended or postponed, for whatever reason, the customer gets their money back as long as the game isn’t finished within 24 hours. In South East Asia and other corners of the World, there is no such rule. If a game is stopped for basically any reason, even after just a few minutes, the result stands.

Crazy, isn’t it?

Read more Irish sports news

I propose the following.

It is all too coincidental that the Ravens had just taken an unassailable lead when the lights went off. Is it that far a stretch of the imagination to suggest a major betting syndicate arranged for the lights to go out and the game to be called off, with the result in their favour (assuming they bet on the Ravens). They obviously would have been hoping that the lights didn’t come back on. We never suggested they were competent criminals, remember!

Much of this is probably completely outlandish to many of our readers in the States in particular, because, thanks to archaic Government laws, gambling has a stigma attached to it due to legislations designed to keep Vegas and organised, black market betting criminals happy. Instead of allowing a fully regulated and controlled level of gambling, all the US government has done is push gambling underground, to the point where Vegas keeps pulling in billions of dollars, while the average schmuck has to risk betting in dark alleys behind bars.

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