BET À DAY
What is worse than sin is hypocrisy. Besides, hugs who have heard of a man named Jesus should know that he forgave Mary Magdalene, an ugly sinner, but vomited up the whitewashed sepulchres of hypocrites who condemned her.
Pete Rose has sinned. He bet on his team's chances of winning a match. Forty-five years ago, it was very ugly. Gambling was the number one enemy of professional sports.
Boxing matches were often rigged and Chicago Black Sox players had accepted money from bettors to lose the World Series. It was 1919. Shoeless Joe Jackson made history. He and seven accomplices were banned from baseball. For life.
It was easier to bribe an athlete in those Belle Époque years, since they were underpaid and exploited by landlords. So, in today's devalued US dollars, the cheaters of 1919 received just $83,000. How do you buy the conscience of a modern gambler making $20 million a year?
PETE ROSE…THE SCAPEGOAT
Pete Rose pays the same price as Shoeless Jackson. He is banned for life from baseball for betting “in favor” of his team the Cincinnati Reds. He always got high to win and the study of the recordings of the matches he had bet on proves it unequivocally.
Rose has officially apologized three times already. He is now an old man and the best hitter in baseball history. But Commissioner Rob Manfred, the same one who betrayed Steven Bronfman and Montreal two years ago, continues to refuse Rose's reinstatement. Because of this decision, all the cheaters of the great steroid period will be able to enter the Hall of Fame but not Pistol Pete.
It is the journalists who are currently blocking Barry Bonds and the other big guns of the 2000s, not major league baseball. But Pete Rose doesn't even have that chance to be recognized.
GAMBLING IS EVERYWHERE
The times are changing. In the 80s, Nordiques players often stopped at Beaugarte before going to the Coliseum to play a match. They chatted about the injured players, the players who were in good shape, those who were sick or who had family problems.
Around 4 o'clock, some bettors used these confidences before calling Las Vegas or their local bookie to place bets.
It was peanuts and it was insignificant and yet the National League had checked to see if nothing major had happened. And before the start of the season, Bill Thorpe of the NHL met with all the players of the National League to make them aware of the dangers that awaited them. And the faces of the main gambling tycoons were shown in the locker room… in black and white.
Players today make millions and don't need the bet athlete to make ends meet. Additionally, multinational gaming companies like BET99 advertise with professional athletes as their spokespersons and are often the biggest announcers on sports broadcasts. Think of Georges St-Pierre.
Thus, according to some observers, gambling companies monopolize the vast majority of airtime devoted to advertising during matches played on the CBC. Are all there. BET99, BET365, Betrivers, Draft Kings. And at TVA Sports, BET99, the biggest advertiser also at BPM Sports, was omnipresent before being taken off the air by the Quebec government.
We demanded exclusivity for Loto-Québec, which sells health care as is well known, which pushes the world to pledge its shirt. Four-thirty cents for a dollar.
Do you think Gary Bettman and the National League neat owners don't know about it?
A RELAXATION LIKE ANOTHER
I was chatting at Sunrise Friday night with Jared Beber, president of BET99 in Canada. Mr. Beber defends his industry, you will understand. What his company aims for, like all gambling companies, is to retain a clientele who will come back game after game for “the pleasure”. to add a little spice to a sports match.
At the left end of the spectrum, there is the addicted to gambling, the sick, who is not a customer too sought after because we're going to lose him sooner rather than later. On the right, there is the zealous for whom gambling is a social plague to be eradicated: “Between the two, it's a way to add pleasure to listening to a match”, says Beber .
Personally, the bet does not make me a crease on the difference. That's not where I find my strong emotions. I know it's dangerous, like booze, dope or sexual abuse.
So I'm not judging Pete Rose. All major league antics are aimed at one thing. Reassure the consumer about the honesty of a match. It has nothing to do with morality, honor or honesty.
All of this, in 2023, is hypocrisy.
Russ Anber, Quebec champion
Russ Anber, the corner man of Deontay Wilder, Artur Beterbiev or Lomachenko, is the happiest man on the planet.
Russ won the Quebec snooker championship.
“ I was more excited and happy than after a victory for Beterbiev or Lomachenko. There, I won. It's not the boxer. The biggest thrill of my life”, he said yesterday.
It must be said that Russ Anber is already a snooker celebrity in Great Britain.
In Sheffield, during the Kevin Bizier fight, I was walking down the stairs in a pub when I came across a laminated cover of a daily newspaper hanging on the wall. It was a story about Russ Anber winning a big game in town…
Russ wields the wand faster than his shadow. A real Lucky Luke.