NBA Referees: 13 Betting-Scandal, Game-Fixing Refs?

November 27, 2009

In a blockbuster story that is sure to put the league on the defensive, a gambler has reportedly implicated many NBA referees, 13 betting scandal-plagued refs to be exact in a new book scheduled for release.

nba referees betting scandal

Everyone wants to know the list of names. No, this hot photo is not one of them! Which referees are corrupt and which NBA games were fixed? Are the allegations even true?

Everyone remembers the name of Tim Donaghy, the NBA referee who served jail time for a game-fixing scheme that was uncovered in 2008. The official line from the league is that he was the only dirty ref. A rap video below memorializes the original game-fixing scandal.

But what if he wasn’t the only one?

Almost nobody remembers the name of his mob handler, Jimmy “The Sheep” Battista, a gambling pro who arranged with Donaghy to fix certain games. He boasted that the ref could deliver the winning bet 75% of the time.

After also serving jail time, Jimmy “The Sheep” Battista is back in the news as he is writing a tell-all book which will be published soon. The book reportedly contains some shocking allegations that there are fully 13 referees who would reliably fix games for his enterprise, and that a certain “big five” of them did it all the time. He claims to have phone records supporting his allegations.

So what are the referees’ names? Alas they say you will have to wait for the book to get that information. Expect the usual teasers before the release as the months progress. And expect a vociferous response to the emerging scandal from the NBA.

This is really bad public relations for the league. Personally I think it would be impossible to keep such a large conspiracy quiet for this long. 13 NBA referees in a betting scandal would be a disaster if true. Your thoughts?

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