Kyrie Irving’s Absence Ends 31-Game Streak, Adam Silver Issues Warning Against Manipulating Wagers

Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving’s streak of 31 consecutive games played comes to an end as he is ruled out due to left hamstring soreness for the team’s final regular-season home game against the Detroit Pistons.
Kyrie Irving's Absence Ends 31-Game Streak, Adam Silver Issues Warning Against Manipulating Wagers

Irving has been sidelined with left hamstring strain for the longest stretch of games he has played since 2015–16. NBA scoring leader Luka Doncic, who is also a co-star, is also classified as questionable due to left ankle pain.

The Mavericks will undoubtedly finish in the top five spots in the Western Conference with two games left.

Dallas can play the Los Angeles Clippers for home-court advantage and the No. 4 seed in the first round. Mavs would need to win their next two games while Los Angeles drops its next two.

After signing a blockbuster deal with Brooklyn the previous season, Irving and Doncic had a limited amount of time together due to injuries, and the Mavericks were unable to make it to the playoffs.

Irving’s injuries plagued him once more this season, missing 18 of 28 games from December to February due to a sprained thumb and a bruised heel.

After Irving recovered from his thumb injury, Dallas was 26-23. With him back in the starting lineup, the team went 24-7 and advanced from a play-in tournament slot to a guaranteed postseason berth among the top six in the West.

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Adam Silver Issues Warning Against Manipulating Wagers

In recent news, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has addressed concerns regarding players manipulating wagers to affect gambling results related to in-game performance. The league is currently investigating accusations against Toronto Raptors reserve player Jontay Porter, who is alleged to have exited two games intentionally to ensure that “under” bets on his performance were successful.

Adam Silver emphasized the severity of such actions, stating that they could lead to a lifetime ban from the game. During a meeting of league owners in New York, Silver highlighted the range of disciplinary measures available and stressed that manipulating wagers in the NBA is considered a cardinal sin.

The investigation into Porter’s activities began in late March, following an ESPN report that raised suspicions about unusual betting patterns related to his performance. One notable incident involved a heavily bet prop on DraftKings, where wagers favored Porter making fewer than 0.5 3-pointers in a game against the Los Angeles Clippers. Porter played only four minutes without scoring before exiting due to an eye injury, leading to significant wins for “under” bettors.

Similarly, on March 20, another instance occurred when Porter played three scoreless minutes against the Sacramento Kings before leaving the game citing illness. Once again, “under” bets on Porter were heavily favored by DraftKings gamblers.

Porter, 24 years old, has been averaging 4.4 points per game through 26 games this season with Toronto. He previously played for the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2020-21 season before being inactive in the league for the following two seasons.

Adam Silver’s comments underscore the importance of maintaining integrity in sports betting and the need for a regulated environment to detect and prevent such manipulative behaviors effectively.

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