Jontay Porter Receives NBA Lifetime Ban for Gambling Violations

Lifestyle

The NBA has banned Jontay Porter for life after a league investigation found the player had violated several league rules on gambling

In an official statement, the NBA said Porter — most recently contracted to the Toronto Raptors — had passed “confidential information” to sports bettors, limited his own participation in games for betting purposes, and bet on NBA games himself. The league said its investigation remains open and it has shared, and will continue to share, all relevant information with federal prosecutors. 

“There is nothing more important than protecting the integrity of NBA competition for our fans, our teams and everyone associated with our sport, which is why Jontay Porter’s blatant violations of our gaming rules are being met with the most severe punishment,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said.

The league’s findings primarily center on a March 20 game between the Raptors and the Sacramento Kings. The NBA found that Porter shared information about his health status to a known NBA bettor, while another bettor “placed an $80,000 parlay proposition bet with an online sports book, to win $1.1 million, wagering that Porter would underperform” during that game. (That bet, however, was frozen and not paid out because of “unusual betting activity.”)

The league went on to say that it had found evidence that Porter “limited his own game participation to influence the outcome of one or more bets.” Again, the March 20 game was cited, with Porter playing just three minutes and “claiming that he felt ill.”

Additionally, the league said that between January and March of this year, Porter placed “at least 13 bets on NBA games using an associate’s online betting account.” Porter allegedly bet a total of $54,094 and received a payout of $76,059, with net winnings of $21,965. “None of the bets involved any game in which Porter played,” the NBA said. “Three of the bets were multi-game parlay bets that included one Raptors game, in which Porter bet that the Raptors would lose. All three bets lost.” 

The NBA began investigating Porter after a licensed sports betting operator and an organization that monitors legal betting markets contacted the league about Porter’s March 20 performance. After the investigation was announced on March 25, the Raptors removed him from their lineup and he has not played a game since. 

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Porter’s ban comes as legal sports gambling continues to grow in prominence in the United States, and professional sports leagues continue to broker major sponsorship deals with legal sportsbook companies. Major League Baseball has had to deal with a betting scandal of its own, after the translator for Shohei Ohtani was fired and accused of stealing millions of dollars from the Dodgers star to cover bets placed with an allegedly illegal bookmaker.

In his statement, Silver seemed to address the issues these collaborations between pro leagues and gambling companies have inevitably raised: “While legal sports betting creates transparency that helps identify suspicious or abnormal activity, this matter also raises important issues about the sufficiency of the regulatory framework currently in place, including the types of bets offered on our games and players. Working closely with all relevant stakeholders across the industry, we will continue to work diligently to safeguard our league and game.”

Read original source here.

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