Friday, January 8th, 2010 at 9:30 am  |  22 responses

NBA to Institute New Gambling Rules for Players?

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

In a sign of things that may become the norm across the League, the New Jersey Nets have banned all in-flight gambling aboard the team plane. According to the NY Times, David Stern’s crusade against players gambling (and, I suppose, possibly shooting one another on NBA property) has just begun.

Tthe NBA is reportedly considering restrictions when it comes to card games and other forms of betting between its most visible employees.

Down the rabbit hole we go:

There are indications that the N.B.A. is now considering new gambling restrictions for players. One team has already acted. On Wednesday, the Nets informed players that gambling was no longer permitted on team flights.

“We did,” Rod Thorn, the Nets’ president, said Thursday in a telephone interview in which he confirmed that the team had instituted a ban. “I think after this incident with the Wizards that we just decided that we would not have any on our planes. We’ve never had a problem with it. But obviously, you can see what can happen.”

Thorn, who was formerly the chief of discipline for the N.B.A., said he was not aware of any other teams instituting a prohibition on gambling. He declined to speculate on whether Commissioner David Stern would act. However, a number of team executives, agents and others with ties to the league said they believed the matter was under serious consideration.

Considering just how tough it would be to police gambling between players, should Stern decide to enact these new rules League wide — whatever said rules may be — it would be absolutely fascinating to observe how the NBA would go about controlling the issue.

I just hope Las Vegas lands a team real soon, and is forced to inform its players that gambling is prohibited.

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  • Ken

    MJ and Oak are rolling in their graves now.

  • Coach Walt

    Sports Illustrated has a magazine cover of the Bulls 96-97 team on a team flight gambling..ole the good ole days!!

  • Sparker

    “but obviously, you can see what can happen.” yeah, someone might threaten to pull a gun over a debt, then another dude might pull a bad joke using HIS guns, then the first guy might lose it and pop a cap in the cylinder and threaten to kill said dude, then they might get ratted out, then it might become a national media story and a twitter sensation, then the commish might have to get all high and mighty on their asses, then basketball fans everywhere might have to shake their heads and go “whoa, there are some incredibly childish/stupid dudes playing the game that i love. yeah, rod, you can see how you might not that to happen on a regular basis

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    What a joke, two dummies act like gang bangers and the whole league gets rules, when these are grown men. I guess they will start playing UNO and Monopoly for money or just bet on Madden 10 games. How in the world can the NBA enforce a gambling rule, these are millionaires, who have a union. MJ would have been out of the league, more years beside those baseball years. ALso can’t they still gamble in the team hotel room, team bus or at the team arena or at their house. COME ON STERN, don’t do it.

  • LA Huey


  • Coach Walt

    Betting goes on everywhere from college kids and meal money, to high schoolers and allowance..so lets see how well this works.. Did ya know NBA players get travel stipends..meal money etc..randon but did ya know?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Lang Whitaker

    This is so ridiculous. Saying that gambling was the cause of the Arenas thing is like saying it’s McDonald’s fault that America is an overweight nation. Maybe gambling can be blamed for Gilbert being suspended right now, but only in a purely linear, simplistic way. If the Wizards players hadn’t been gambling, maybe Crittenton and Arenas wouldn’t have had the disagreement that morning over who had the cooler car or who owned more toothbrushes or something else equally banal. The problem in this situation is that Gilbert showed terrible judgment. There are huge buildings in Las Vegas that are temples to gambling, and yet you don’t see people there leaving four guns on a chair in the morning after they spent all night at the tables. I’m not saying that gambling isn’t a problem for some people, but blaming gambling, particularly across the entire NBA, for Gilbert’s lack of judgment is misguided. And wrong.

  • http://slamonline.com NUPE

    I understand what Stern is considering but don’t agree with it. There are so many differnet things that can cause players to get mad at each other like talking trash, practical jokes, sleeping with someone elses wife, saying your momma, telling the press that a teammate is lazy or telling a teammates wife that he’s cheating etc. Trying to legislate against any action that can lead to violence isn’t going to work. Having policies against guns and any kind of phyiscal violence or threats against other players/teammates/officials etc, makes sense. But if Stern goes down this path, he’ll be overstepping his authority in my opinion. Sometimes playing cards (for money or not) is a good way to form bonds among people and to try to police such things does not make sense.

  • http://slamonline.com/ niQ

    Damn you McD’s!!! On another note, guns don’t kill people, people kill people!

  • Statik

    Cosign Lang, nail has been hit on the head. And maybe Thorn, way to get your priorities straight! I’m pretty sure gambling on team planes is the least of the team’s problems

  • JoeMaMa

    Emperor Stern just announced that shoe polish is being provided to all NBA teams, except the Indiana Pacers.

  • http://joe_c_jr@att.net Joe

    The Nets also decided to cancel their planned Casino Night promotion.

  • Rachel

    The Nets’ move suggests they don’t think their players all have a strong enough character to be trusted. I can’t imagine the Spurs organization (for example), feeling a need to police its players that way.

  • nastierthanu

    This is just fallout. People start instituting policies once something major happens. This is just the first sanction from the agent event. When the year 2000 bug was announced many people were stockpiling goods in preparation. Shockwaves from the oringinal blunder. to put it plain and simple this is fallout and it won’t stop there.

  • Peter

    This is the same type of retroactive precaution as making you take your shoes off in airport security cause someone tried to use a shoe bomb.

  • http://www.luketynan.blogspot.com litetitan

    While we are on the subject…it’s McDonald’s fault that America is an overweight na…. oh never mind. Sorry Lang.

  • http://idunkonthem.blogspot.com/ albie1kenobi

    but the ban is only on the team plane right?

  • BostonBaller

    Very well put Mr. Lang. One should always get to the root of the problem in order to get rid of it. The root in this case was not gambling it was stupidity. Gil is an entertaining player but he “seems” to think he untouchable, why else would he kid about such a serious situation by doing that stupid six shooter routine during pregame? He also looked foolish while reading that statement and saying it was a joke. Instead of banning gambling why not ban guns in the arena, on the plane/bus, in the hotels or anywhere else the NBA is represented? I’m sure you don’t take your gloc to SLAMdome Mr. Lang…

  • http://www.twitter.com/PDXGayBball dma

    why is david stern SO against gambling? does he think his sport is really that pure?

  • http://boombasketball.com/ Dave von BOOM

    NBA 2010 = kindergarten

  • memyselfand9

    LOL actually McDonalds plays a huge role in the people being overweight problem. it’s not only them but they are at the head of the fast food *culture*.
    gambling doesn’t neccessarily ruin your life BUT it can play a huge part. there’s no denying that.
    the question is how do you handle the situation of gambling being everywhere and if monitoring is possible/neccessary.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Most of the gambling previously allowed by teams was actually illegal.