Kansas City’s mayor says he tried to talk Marty Walsh into a Patriots-Chiefs wager

Sly James also made his best attempt at imitating Walsh's Boston accent.

Kansas City, Mo. Mayor Sly James, center, flanked by Fresno, Calif., Mayor Ashley Swearengin, left, and and Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, joined White House press secretary Josh Earnest during the daily news briefing at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016, to discuss a variety of topics affecting U.S. cities. President Barack Obama is hosting a reception for the nation’s mayors at the White House later today. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Kansas City Mayor Sly James flanked by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh at the White House in 2016. –Carolyn Kaster / AP

Kansas City Mayor Sly James has made a habit of betting his counterparts over big sporting events. In his eight years in office, James has placed friendly wagers with fellow mayors on NFL playoff gamesseveral World Series, and even the MLS Cup.

So what does he have riding on this weekend’s AFC Championship Game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the New England Patriots?

Well, nothing.

That’s because Boston Mayor Marty Walsh doesn’t do sports wagers anymore — not even if it means a chance at James’s typical wager: Kansas City’s famous barbecue.

The Missouri mayor says he reached out to Walsh about a potential wager, but was rebuffed by his fellow Democrat.


“Marty doesn’t make bets on games because every time Marty makes a bet they lose,” James told reporters in a press conference Thursday, jokingly imitating Walsh’s Boston accent.

“So I tried to talk Marty into making another bet,” he continued. “He wouldn’t do it.”

Indeed, Walsh stopped agreeing to wagers on local teams’ playoff games after losing two consecutive following his first election in 2014.

“Marty Walsh is a good dude,” James said this week. “And if you spend anytime talking to Marty on the phone and trying to interpret what he’s saying to you it’s really kind of interesting. But Marty doesn’t make bets because Marty is superstitious.”

James added that he plans to see Walsh next week during the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ winter meeting in Washington, D.C., and “have a laugh.”

“I’ll wait and see who’s in the Super Bowl with us, hopefully, and I’ll make a bet with them,” he said.