Jontay Porter Banned From NBA for Betting on Games, Aiding Gamblers

Jontay Porter was banned from the NBA on Wednesday after a league investigation concluded the Toronto Raptor two-way player bet on NBA games, “limiting his participation in one or more games” and giving actionable information to gamblers.

“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,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement.

The NBA concluded that Porter, 24, disclosed confidential information about his health “to an individual he knew to be an NBA bettor” before a March 20 game. Another person that Porter knew to be an NBA bettor, the league claims, then made an $80,000 parlay prop bet with an online sports betting app to win $1.1 million if Porter came in under certain statistical marks. That bet was voided and reported to the NBA when Porter removed himself from the game after just three minutes, claiming he was ill. The NBA statement suggested that Porter could have tanked his props in at least one more Raptors game.

Porter also was found to have placed 13 bets — ranging in size from $15 to $22,000 for a total of $54,094 — on the NBA from January through March while playing for Toronto or its G League developmental team. None, the NBA said, involved games in which he played. But he picked the Raptors to lose three times in parlays. All of them lost.

Porter yielded a net of $21,965 from his bets this year. Action Network reported yesterday that Porter had wagered millions with a FanDuel account.

Will the NBA Switch Stance on Single-Player Prop Bets?

In the statement, Silver conjured NCAA president Charlie Baker, who has actively — and successfully — lobbied state regulators to ban single-player prop bets on intercollegiate games. Porter was afoul of NBA gambling rules on multiple fronts. It’s perhaps ironic that single-player props — and his intentional underperformance — are what led to his discovery.

“While legal sports betting creates transparency that helps identify suspicious or abnormal activity, this matter also raises the important issues about the sufficiency regulatory framework currently in place,” Silver said in the statement, “including the types of bets offered on our games and players.

“Working closely with all the relevant stakeholders across the industry, we will continue to work diligently to safeguard our league and game.”

The NBA said on Wednesday that the investigation remains open.

About the Author
Brant James

Brant James

Senior Writer
Brant James is a senior writer who covers the sports betting industry and legislation at Gaming Today. An alum of the Tampa Bay Times, ESPN.com, espnW, SI.com, and USA Today, he's covered motorsports and the NHL as beats. He also once made a tail-hook landing on an aircraft carrier with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and rode to the top of Mt. Washington with Travis Pastrana. John Tortorella has yelled at him numerous times.

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