How former ref Tim Donaghy conspired to fix NBA games

James»Jimmy»»Bah-Bah»»The Sheep» Battista was a stressed-out, obese, Oxy-addicted 41-year-old, at the pit to a underground gamblers for sums he had kind of lost track of, when he settled in to watch an NBA game for which he thought he would just put in the correct. It was January 2007. A month or so back, long before Christmas, he had done something adventuresome: He had sat down and cut a deal with an NBA referee. Now he feared that the scheme had become overly obvious.
«You wanna get paid?» Battista had stated to the ref. «Then you have ta cover the f—ing spread.» The bribe was only two dimes, $2,000 per match — an outrageous deal. In case the choice won, the ref got his two dimes. If the pick missed, the ref owed nothing; Battista would eat the loss. A»free roster,» as they call it. But this referee did not lose much. His picks were winning in an 88 percent clip, totally unheard of sports betting for any sustained time period. They were now entering the first week of this scheme — what you might call a sustained period of time.
Battista had known the ref, Timmy Donaghy, for 25 years. They had gone to the exact same parochial high school in the suburban areas of Delaware County, just outside Philadelphia — Delco, as it is sometimes called — where the sports bars are abundant, where a certain easy familiarity with all forms of betting prevails, where men have bookies like they’ve got dentists.
Battista was a creature of the planet. He was what is called a mover. Strictly speaking, movers are gamblers nor bookmakers. They are a species of agent that provides services to sports bettors, putting down wagers in their clients’ behalf with bookmakers of various sorts around the Earth, legal and not. Battista was set well in that world which, without Donaghy’s knowledge but based on Donaghy’s selections, he’d helped set up a sort of loose, disorderly hedge fund. Several individuals from the sports-betting underworld had, in consequence, staked Battista a bankroll — a finance that he was currently having to bet on games officiated by this one NBA referee. One member of this team called it»the ticket» and»the company.»

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