Drew Brees Nov 25, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees waves to fans on the sidelines before the game between the New Orleans Saints and the Buffalo Bills at the Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Sports gambling expansion is currently sweeping America, and sportsbooks are spending big bucks to attract as many new customers as possible. That leads to some good marketing campaigns. It can also lead to bad campaigns.

Enter PointsBet Sportsbook. While looking to promote its new relationship with former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, the brand released an advertising video that appeared to show lightning striking Brees while filming a commercial in Venezuela.

“Drew Brees was struck by lightning in Catatumbo while we were recording a commercial south of Lake Maracaibo. It happened a few hours ago. More information shortly…” the tweet reads in Spanish.

PointsBet followed with a statement on the apparent disaster:

“We are aware of the media coverage regarding PointsBet brand ambassador Drew Brees. We are in communication with Brees’ team and will continue to monitor events throughout the coming hours. At this stage we will not be making any further comment,” PointsBet Sportsbook tweeted.

The apparent marketing ploy lead to Brees (seen above on the sideline of a November game last year) having to actually deny he got struck by lightning:

“I just texted Drew Brees,” Katherine Terrell tweeted. “He said he’s good and that he did not get struck by lightning.”

The sports world was quick to react:

“Either Drew Brees was fully struck by lightning or PointsBet’s running the worst marketing scheme of all-time.Lawsuit or court of public opinion — either way, PointsBet is about to get slaughtered,” Carlos Verde tweeted.

“The plan for a viral marketing campaign ran into one issue: the guy who was the face of it wanted to make sure people knew he wasn’t dead,” Bill DiFilippo tweeted.

“There goes the most interesting story of the day. But happy Drew is okay!” Matt Miller tweeted.

“Big fan of when you miss the initial thing, but catch the follow-up to the thing. I remain the same level of glad that Drew Brees has not been struck by lightning,” Dan Devine tweeted.

“I’m good. I didn’t get struck by lightning,” Brees told a reporter. “But check out the lightning bets on PointsBet this weekend. Maybe it WILL strike twice, just for you. That’s how you live your bet life.”

Update: PointsBet also eventually put out this:

[Rafaél Hernandez]