Written by Greg Wyshynskifor ESPNRead Time: 1 Minute
Ottawa Senators center Shane Pinto has been handed a 41-game suspension for violating the NHL’s sports wagering rules, according to multiple sources at ESPN.
Further details of the suspension are expected to be released later today.
This incident marks the first instance of a suspension for gambling in the NHL since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized sports wagering in 2018, which subsequently led to numerous partnerships and sponsorship agreements between the league and sportsbooks. In 2021, the Ottawa Senators made history by becoming the first NHL team to showcase a gambling advertisement on their helmets through a deal with Bet99.
The collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and NHLPA clearly prohibits any form of gambling on NHL games. This rule is prominently displayed in every dressing room across the league. The NHL constitution, a comprehensive document covering various aspects such as club ownership rules and the powers of the commissioner, contains similar provisions. Players and individuals associated with teams and the league can engage in betting activities related to non-NHL events.
According to sources at ESPN, considering the length of the suspension, it is believed that Pinto, aged 22, did not place bets on hockey games.
Commissioner Gary Bettman, as per the collective bargaining agreement, possesses the authority to penalize players for breaching off-ice league regulations or for engaging in conduct that is “detrimental to the welfare of the league or the game of hockey.” The CBA outlines three potential forms of discipline for the commissioner: imposing fines, canceling contracts, or expelling/suspending players “for a definite or indefinite period.”
Currently a restricted free agent, Pinto is not under contract with the Senators at present.
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