A new book on gambling in the world of sports has revealed that FBI informants alleged that three New York Knicks conspired with their drug dealer to fix games during the 1981-82 season.
The book, “Larceny Games: Sports Gambling, Game Fixing, and the FBI”, was written by Brian Tuohy, who spoke to the New York Post about his book which revealed that the Feds spent several years in the 1980s investigating whether the players were shaving points.
According to documents obtained by Tuohy, the drug dealer would routinely bet $300 on NBA games and began to lay down $10,000 wagers on games in January 1982. He went on to win six of seven bets over the following couple of months.
“Over . . . the last two months, all three (players) have given . . . tips on when to bet the Knicks to lose. This has occurred seven times and six of the tips were good,” according to FBI files citing two unnamed “sources.”
“So many people say it’s impossible to fix a game because guys are paid so much money,” Tuohy told The Post. “But you can see how easily they can get hooked on some drug, be gambling themselves and get in deep with a bookie.”
The names of the players and the dealer were redacted in the FBI documents, which The Post authenticated with the federal agency. The case went on until 1986 but eventually fell apart when the Feds could not gather enough evidence.
The Knicks’ top scorer that season was Michael Ray Richardson, who averaged almost 18 points per game. He would be drummed out of the league in 1986 for violating the NBA’s drug policy three times.
The Post contacted Richardson on whether there was anything to the point-shaving allegations.
“Hell no!” he said. “We never did anything like that.”