There is no doubt among most Internet gambling fans that the NBA is the worst officiated major sports league on the planet. At times the comical acting of the players and the phantom fouls and no calls in the heat of the NBA online gambling action can seem to put it on par with the WWF. But the recent allegations that league threw an Internet gambling playoff series in 2002 has raised more than just a few online gambling eyebrows regarding the integrity -or lack there of- of the game.
One must also consider the source of these new Internet gambling allegations. Disgraced NBA referee Tim Donaghy has already been indicted and convicted of betting on games he’s officiated and as an admitted felon he is no choir boy, nor the leading voice of integrity in Internet gambling. But be that as it may Internet gambling fans should at not dismiss his accusation out of hand especially those online gambling fans that actually saw -or engaged in Internet gambling- the series in question.
The series that Donaghy refers to is the LA Lakers vs. Sacramento Kings that went seven games and provided all kinds of Internet gambling controversy at the time. According to the former referee, the NBA wanted the Lakers (and its two marketable online gambling stars Kobe Bryant and Shaq) to play in the NBA Finals, not the less popular Kings. The reason that that Donaghy deserves the benefit of the doubt is that any Internet gambling fan that saw the series would agree that the Kings were the superior team.
But in the final two games of that Internet gambling series the Lakers received a tremendous amount of phantom foul calls and the Kings were victims or multiple and confusing no calls -exactly as the disgraced referee reported as happening. That may just be an Internet gambling coincidence. But Internet gambling fans must also ask themselves about Donaghy’s motivation.
Sure he’d like to have a reduced sentence, but he surely also realized the risk he runs of an extended sentence if he lies. And the Internet gambling evidence certainly supports his allegations. If his claims are true, this would be a terrible set back for NBA betting.