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Sources: NBA, books in talks after Porter scandal

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In the aftermath of the Jontay Porter betting scandal, the NBA and its partner sportsbooks are discussing changes to betting menus to combat similar occurrences in the future, sources familiar with the talks confirmed to ESPN.

Among the changes that have been discussed is prohibiting betting on players on two-way contracts between the G League and the NBA, sources said. More extreme measures such as not allowing bets on the “under” on a player prop have been considered, sources said, but there are concerns that restricting wager types could push bettors into the unregulated betting market.

The NBA has commercial contracts with sportsbooks such as BetMGM, DraftKings and FanDuel that give the league some influence on what types of wagers are offered.

Gambling industry site Legal Sports Report first reported the talks between the NBA and sportsbooks.

“Since states began legalizing sports betting in 2018, we have worked closely with betting operators as well as integrity monitoring organizations to put in place essential monitoring and reporting systems so that we are best positioned to identify potential betting anomalies and to act to protect the integrity of our game,” an NBA spokesperson said in a statement to ESPN.

DraftKings, FanDuel and BetMGM did not respond to ESPN’s request for comment.

Commissioner Adam Silver banned Porter from the NBA on April 17. Porter has not commented publicly on the allegations.

Porter was playing for the Toronto Raptors on a two-way contract, earning $415,000 this season, when, according to the NBA, he allegedly passed along information about his health to a known gambler and manipulated his performance for betting purposes in at least one game.

The league also accused Porter of placing at least 13 bets on the NBA using an associate’s online betting account. The bets ranged in size from $15 to $22,000. Porter did not play in any of the games included in the bets, according to the NBA, but three of the wagers were parlays with the Raptors to lose. Porter’s bets on the NBA totaled $76,059, with a net win of $21,965, according to the league.

The NBA prohibits players from betting on the league or any of its properties.

Gambling industry sources said Porter maintained accounts with legal sportsbooks in Colorado, including with FanDuel from 2021 to 2023. The sources said Porter did not place wagers on the NBA during the time he had a FanDuel account. Porter was not playing in the NBA at the time, and his FanDuel account was suspended in the middle of 2023, before he signed his first two-way contract, according to an industry source. The source said Porter’s account was flagged during the sportsbook’s routine know-your-customer financial checks and permanently suspended.

Before a March 20 game between the Sacramento Kings and Raptors, an unidentified associate of Porter’s placed an $80,000 same-game parlay bet featuring the under on several of Porter’s statistics that would have paid out $1.1 million, according to the NBA. Porter played just three minutes before being taken out of the game, citing an illness.

Sportsbooks also reported suspicious betting activity on the under on Porter’s statistics in a Jan. 26 game between the Raptors and LA Clippers. Porter played just four minutes in that game before leaving with issues related to an eye injury suffered earlier in the week against the Memphis Grizzlies.

The NBA said it has shared information with federal prosecutors, and sources familiar with the issue said the investigation continues.

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