Archive for the ‘gambling’ Category

DID TAMPA BAY QB FIX GAMES IN COLLEGE?

August 7, 2008

BRUCE GRADKOWSKI

A former University of Toledo basketball player was arrested today and charged with point shaving. The arrest comes a little more than a year after a former Toledo football player, running back Scooter McDougle, was accused of taking money and cars from a Michigan gambler to fix college football and basketball games.

During the time that the point shaving scandal was going on, Bruce Gradkowski was the school’s starting quarterback. He was also seen hanging around Gary Manni, the guy accused of masterminding the point shaving scam. The Toledo Blade says the FBI has often floated Gradkowski’s name as a possible conspirator.

Gradkowski played the last two seasons with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He received extensive playing time in 2006. Despite Tampa Bay stocking up with a pile of quarterbacks, Gradkowski was not re-signed by the Bucs. However, he is in camp with the St. Louis Rams.

ESPN.com ran a brilliant article about the Toledo scandal last August. That story brought Gradkowski’s name into the mix. Since then, several other media outlets have picked up on Gradkowski (an NFL quarterback) and his possible role in fixing games. Before the scandal, Tampa Bay coach John Gruden was a vigorous defender of Gradkowski despite his mediocre pro results. Now, not so much.

 

One other interesting aspect of the Toledo gambling case is the role that Las Vegas gambling entities played in bringing the scandal to light. Kenny White of Las Vegas Sports consultants alerted Nevada state officials about questionable bets surrounding Toledo games. MGM Mirage actually took most Toledo games off the board in 2005 and restricted betting on the team.

The NFL fears Las Vegas.  This is just another example of Vegas being the good guy. They’re actually a policing force on gambling. Vegas is the cops not the criminals.

 

DISGRACED REF TIM DONAGHY OFF TO PRISON

July 29, 2008

TIM DONAGHY

Disgraced NBA referee Tim Donaghy was sentenced to 15 months in prison today for his role in a gambling scandal. That prison sentence will be followed by three years of probation. Donaghy pleaded guilty to two felonies for providing inside information to professional gamblers and to betting on games, including those he officiated.

Donaghy’s lawyers had argued for a reduced sentence for their client claiming he is addicted to gambling. Maybe this is a bad analogy, but isn’t a convicted point fixer asking for leniency because of a gambling problem kind of like someone who kills their parents asking for mercy because he’s an orphan?

LEGENDARY VEGAS GAMBLER AND CRIMINAL DIES

July 26, 2008

JIMMY CHAGRA

Only in Las Vegas.

The death of one of the biggest drug dealers in American history, who arranged the murder of a federal judge, is being met with tears. Why? Because he was a GREAT tipper and a degenerate gambler.

Jimmy Chagra was known as one of the most prolific pot dealers ever. The saying goes if you smoked marijuana in the 60’s or 70’s, chances are you got it from Jimmy Chagra. Chagra was the “undisputed marijuana kingpin of the Western world.”

 When Chagra was eventually nailed by the Feds he had over $100 million dollars in foreign accounts. The government took it all. Las Vegas casinos loved Chagra because he laundered that money through them.

Chagra was known as one of the biggest high rollers in Las Vegas history. He often lost millions of dollars (of drug money) in a single night. Chagra may also have been one of the most generous tippers in Las Vegas history. He was such an extravagent tipper that journalist George Knapp tells the story of how the card dealers at Caesar’s Palace once bought Chagra a giant trophy in honor of the “gargantuan” tips the drug kingpin left.

One of the most interesting aspects of Chagra’s death was his connection to Charles Harrelson. Harrelson was the father of actor Woody Harrelson and known as one of the most famous hitmen and murderers in American history. He was convicted of killing federal judge “Maximum John”  Wood. Harrelson once confessed to having a role in the Kennedy assassination (which he later recanted.) Conspiracy theorists have said Harrelson was one of the “Three Tramps”  hiding in a box car on the railroad tracks behind Dealey Plaza just after Kennedy’s shooting.

Charles Harrelson died in the federal Supermax prison while serving a life sentence. Chagra, who confessed to hiring Harrelson to kill Wood, was acquitted of murder charges after hiring defense attorney Oscar Goodman. Goodman is now the mayor of Las Vegas. In later years Chagra tried denying hiring Harrelson. The fact is Chagra’s wife was arrested delivering $250,000 to him. Chagra was also on tape talking about hiring Harrelson for the hit while he was in prison (a tape Goodman got thrown out of court.)

CHARLES HARRELSON

OOPS! GUY WHO SIGNED INOA FOR A’S IS DOMINICAN REPUBLIC’S BIGGEST BOOKIE

July 23, 2008

MICHAEL INOA SIGNING WITH THE A’S LAST MONTH: GUY ON THE FAR LEFT (NEXT TO BILLY BEANE) IS A BOOKIE

Here’s another Latin American headache for Major League Baseball. Sports llustrated is reporting that the agent who represented pitcher Michael Inoa of the Dominican Republic in his recent record setting contract negotiations with the Oakland A’s just happens to be the country’s biggest bookie.

According to SI, Edgar Mercedes has made a fortune taking bets. He is the owner of Out 27, the biggest sports book and bar in the Dominican Republic. Mercedes also owns 45 other bookmaking operations on the island. Mercedes is a top  “Buscones”  or street agent who represents several baseball players (including Inoa.)

WORLD SERIES OF POKER DOWN TO THE FINAL TABLE

July 15, 2008

CURRENT CHIP LEADER DENNIS PHILLIPS

They are down to the final table at the 2008 World Series of Poker. The current chip leader is a 53-year-old amateur from suburban St. Louis named Dennis Phillips. None of the remaining players has ever won a WSOP bracelet before.

The rules of the tournament have been changed this year. The final table of nine players will have to wait four months for their chance at the tournament’s top prize. This year’s winner will take home $9.12 million.

UH OH! DONAGHY MAY HAVE HAD HELP

July 14, 2008

 

NBA COACH GEORGE KARL TURNS HIS BACK ON REFEREE SCOTT FOSTER

Foxsports.com has obtained the phone records of Tim Donaghy and say the disgraced NBA referee may not have acted alone in his gambling transgressions.

The NBA has maintained that Donaghy was a lone “rogue isolated criminal” who acted alone, but phone records obtained by Fox show Donaghy made over 100 phone calls to fellow ref Scott Foster at the same time he was talking to gamblers.

Fox says their research shows Donaghy made 136 phone calls to Foster and 124 calls to his bookie between October 2006 and April 2007. That’s the same time Donaghy admitted to betting on NBA games. Donaghy’s phone records show he didn’t phone any other referee more than 13 times.

The Fox story goes into elaborate details about Donaghy’s phone records. They also quote law enforcement sources who say the Foster calls look “suspicious.” The Fox story says the “conversations with Foster and others have led authorities to suspect the NBA betting scandal goes beyond Donaghy.”

 

TIM DONAGHY

NEVADA SPORTSBOOKS MAY LIFT “ANTIQUATED” CELL PHONE BAN

July 13, 2008

The Nevada Gaming Control Board this week passed a measure recommending the repeal of the regulation banning the use of cell phones in casino sports books. The Gaming Commission will make a final ruling on the decision later this year.

Anyone who has ever visited Las Vegas knows that you can’t use a cell phone in a sports books. This idiotic regulation is VIGOROUSLY enforced. The regulation is so stupid that it is actually based on a 1961 law. That’s right. Only the government would base its cell phone and internet policies on a law that was passed nearly 50 years ago.

A Las Vegas blog has attempted to explain the cell phone ban. The Federal Wire Act was passed in 1961. It was designed to stop “runners” from transmitting information on odds from different casinos in attempt to prevent illegal bookmakers from “laying off” wagers. Incompetant government bureaucrats have been unable to find a way to change the ban. Even though a couple of little inventions like CELL PHONES AND THE INTERNET have occured since the passage of the original law.

Anyone who wants to know the odds of ANY event at any casino simply needs to make one mouse click on the internet. To ban the use of cell phones because of the hypothetical theory of bookies running paper betting slips around Las Vegas is idiotic beyond belief. The fact that the cell phone policy hasn’t changed since their INVENTION tells you everything you need to know about government bureaucracy and stupidity.

 

FORMER FLORIDA STAR ACCUSED OF RAPE

July 10, 2008

TEDDY DUPAY

From Deadspin via the Gainesville Sun:

 

Former University of Florida basketball player Teddy Dupay has been arrested and charged with rape in Utah.

Police say Dupay hit or kicked the victim after locking a Utah hotel room door. He also allegedly threatened to catch the woman and kill her family if she attempted to leave. Dupay has been charged with three felonies: rape, aggravated kidnapping and sexual assault.

Dupay admits he had sex with the woman and says it got “a little rough” but denies raping her. Dupay reportedly told police,

 

 

“How can you rape someone you love?”

According to the police report, the victim had bruises on her outer right thigh, scratches on her back, large bruises on her back, large bruises on her upper arm and shoulder and a swollen eye. She also suffered two broken ribs.

Dupay was a member of  the 2000 Florida team that made it to the NCAA championship game. His collegiate career was ended by a gambling scandal. It was discovered that Dupay bet on college basketball games (including Florida games.) Dupay went undrafted by the NBA. He was invited to training camp by the Orlando Magic but was cut in the preseason.

Deadpin.com ran a story about Dupay working as a telemarketer in Utah. One other note, although he is still in his 20’s and was a major star in college, Teddy Dupay is a ghost on the internets today. He has no Wikipedia listing and although there are 2.9 million topics on the photo site Flicr.com, Teddy Dupay isn’t one of them. Hell, he doesn’t even have a MySpace or Facebook account.

WERE WIMBLEDON MATCHES FIXED?

June 23, 2008

 

The Daily Mail of London is reporting as many as eight professional tennis matches may have been fixed at the hallowed Wimbledon Tennis Championships. According to the newspaper, four of last year’s mens singles matches at Wimbledon are suspected of being fixed by the Russian mob.

This week the governing bodies of tennis announced new rules  banning everyone except coaches from the players dressing rooms. The rules are designed to limit contact between WTA players and gamblers and potential match fixers. Last year Belgian player Gilles Elseneer came forward to say he had been bribed to throw a match at Wimbledon in 2005.

British tennis player Andy Murray has already said,

“Everyone knows that match-fixing takes place.”

ANDY MURRAY

SPORTSBOOK DIRECTOR FOR TOP VEGAS PROPERTY QUITS

June 22, 2008

RETIRING MGM MIRAGE RACE AND SPORTSBOOK DIRECTOR ROBERT WALKER

If you want a better understanding of sports gambling check out today’s article by Matt Youmans in the Las Vegas Jeview Journal. The piece recaps the career of retiring MGM Mirage sportsbook director Robert Walker.

The article does a brilliant job of laying out the transformation of Las Vegas from the “wild west” of sports gambling to the corporate run $2.59 billion industry that sports betting is today.

Walker, whose last day on the job was yesterday, actually says he’s PROUD of his reputation as a “bean counter,”

“My reputation is a bean counter, which I think is a good thing. But you get labeled afraid to take a bet, and it’s not my money. Anybody can take a bet when it’s not their money.”

Many people don’t realize the top bet you can make legally in Las Vegas sportsbooks is now measured in the thousands of dollars not millions. Youmans also does a good job of explaining the daily give and take between large corporate casinos and the professional “wiseguy” bettors in Las Vegas.


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