Sports betting company DraftKings apologized Monday for exploiting the Sept. 11 anniversary by encouraging customers to place bets on New York sports teams for a special daily trifecta.
The Boston-based company offered bettors a 9/11-themed game in which three New York-based teams – the Yankees, Mets and Jets – had to win their games on Monday, the 22nd anniversary of the terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 People died at Manhattan’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in a plane crash in Pennsylvania.
“It’s greed. These people are greedy,” complained Tom Von Essen, who was New York City’s fire commissioner when 343 of his firefighters died trying to save lives after hijackers rammed planes into the two World Trade Center towers, leading to the… Collapse of the two giant buildings resulted.
“It’s insensitive and over the top,” Von Essen said of DraftKings’ 9/11 pitch. “This is something we don’t need on September 11th. But I understand greed.”
After an outcry from others on social media who were also offended by the parody titled “Never Forget,” DraftKings accepted the offer and apologized.
“We sincerely apologize for the post that was briefly shared in commemoration of 9/11. We respect the significance of this day for our country and especially for the families of those directly affected,” DraftKings said in a statement.
The “Never Forget” program encourages customers to “bet on these New York teams to win tonight on September 11th” – the Mets against the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Yankee against the Boston Red Sox and the Jets against the Buffalo Bills.
Both the Jets and Bills are considered New York teams, although the Jets play their home games across the Hudson River in New Jersey.