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ΝΒΑ Investigates Raptors’ Center Jontay Porter for Betting Irregularities

17 Apr 2024

The Raptors Center became unavailable for March 25th's clash against the Brooklyn Nets. The NBA intervened, and Porter sat out until the league launched a full gambling investigation. Multiple US sportsbooks have noticed some unusual interest in his props for a few weeks now. 

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, many bookmakers received requests to considerably increase the betting limits on the Over/Under line in points. The usual limits range between $1,000 and $2,000, but multiple accounts requested to bet upwards of $10,000 or even $20,000.

Which Irregularities Have Been The Focal Point

Interest was particularly evident in the match against the Los Angeles Clippers (January 26th), which focused on the 'Under' lines, which were set at 5.5 (points), 4.5 (rebounds), 0.5 (3-pointers), and 1.5 (assists). Eventually, Porter played less than five minutes after being taken out of the game with an eye injury.  

Obviously, all Under lines came through, and DraftKings reported that the Under 0.5 3-pointers made line on Porter was the biggest winner for players that night among all NBA prop bets. Apart from the fact that they notified the league about the unusual activity, the DraftKings sportsbook had no further comments on the matter. 

The NBA and the Toronto Raptors also refused to make any comments on the situation since it's in the early stages. The only certainty is that they both looked into it and that Porter is not currently with the team. 

Most Toronto Raptors players were unaware of the investigation until the match. Garrett Temple, who is the National Basketball Players Association Vice President, was taken aback by the rumours and mentioned the following: 

“But at the end of the day, nothing has been proven yet. It’s an investigation and he’s a member of our team, a member of our organization, but also a member of the 450 (union members). So, my position is that we’re backing (him) and hope that it’s not what has been implied.”

Generally, NBA players and other league employees are prohibited from participating in any form of betting activity. Failure to abide by these rules can lead to suspensions, fines, or even contract terminations.

After all, we all remember Tim Donaghy's betting scandal. He bet thousands of dollars on NBA games until the 2007 season, earning a 15-month prison sentence and a dedicated Netflix documentary in the process. 

The Verdict

After a thorough investigation, the NBA decided that Porter was guilty of deliberately faking an injury and disclosing information to sports bettors. In the March 20th game, Porter's associate placed an $80,000 bet on the Under lines, which resulted in a $1.1 million win since he only played 3 minutes. As a result, Porter has been banned from the NBA for life.

Commissioner Adam Silver stated, "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."

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