[ | | | 3 interested person(s) ]

Wayne Gretzky is allegedly on tape talking to some dude running an illegal gambling ring. The sports world is up in arms as the man that is probably the best player in hockey history could be a gambler. My question is, "Who cares?" Michael Jordan did it, Pete Rose did it, it didn't change the fact that they, are some of the best if not the best to play their respective sports.

Your counter argument maybe that their betting could affect the games they played in. Again, does it matter? It's a sport not international trade negotiations. If the Kings, Reds or Bulls lost a game because of it the world will continue to spin. I find it funny that things that occur in the sporting world are always blown way out of proportion.

Go ahead and tell me you are not illegally betting in a March Madness bracket and then maybe you can take the moral high ground with this argument. Until then people need to chill out cause gambling is a very big part of sports and to think differently you are fooling yourself. Sports betting should be legal in this country like it is in Europe. I also think the use of illegal drugs is much more pressing given the regularity of it and the health implications.

3 interested person(s)

JT said... @ 2/10/2006 12:31:00 PM

From my understanding, the actual gambling element is not the large issue here. The fact that Rick Tocchet and his partners were involved with individuals who were linked to organized crime is really what's at stake. Guys like Jagr can piss away a few grand playing craps in Vegas, or betting on the Super Bowl. That is fine. When figures of the game set up organizations that have any communication with "mob" or "mafia", that changes the stakes entirely.

You can't have criminals connected, because then conflicts of interest come in to play. I remember reading the allegations of who Jordan was mixed up with, and all the conspiracy theories w. his return/departures from the game. Not sure how much stock I put in them, but having syndicated crime in the picture is the real problem for hockey, if such a thing does come to light.

I might also argue that Gretsky is bigger to his sport than Jordan or Rose, but that's a whole other argument. Definitely something to watch as it develops though.

K. said... @ 2/10/2006 12:44:00 PM

Nice JT. I wasn't aware of the ties to Organized crime. That definitely raises the stakes.

I think Gretzky is for sure bigger then Rose...but Jordan? Not so sure.

One of the problems I do see with gambling and sports (the mob aside) is that the NFL, NCAA and others welcome the increased attention and revenue from commercials and then at the same time act like it has no relation to gambling.

Peen said... @ 2/11/2006 10:56:00 AM

Rose bet on baseball at a time when he was still directly involved in the outcome of games. Jordan was a gambler. In my mind there is a difference.

What side Gretsky falls on I don't know.

Plus if you saw sportcenter last night Tocchet's lawyer says he was completely innocence......rrriiiiiiigggggghhhhttttt

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