Allegations of a sports capital offense

The National Hockey League (NHL) said it will conduct a full investigation into comments on social media made by the wife of San Jose Sharks’ player Evander Kane regarding his gambling and alleged match fixing. Kane has vehemently denied all accusations.

Over the weekend, Anna Kane posted a serious accusation against her estranged husband on Instagam, saying, “How does the NHL let a compulsive gambling addict still play when he’s obviously throwing games to win money? Hmm maybe someone needs to address this.”

As sports fans know, gambling on one’s own sport is a bad look and often against the rules of professional sports leagues. Regardless of the rules, however, intentionally try to lose a game or affect the outcome for betting purposes (even if one still wins) is absolutely ban-worthy (and could be illegal, depending on the jurisdiction). So needless to say, this is some heavy stuff that Anna Kane is throwing out there.

Evander Kane pushed back on the accusations, posting a statement on Twitter.

“I have NEVER gambled/bet on Hockey,” he said, “NEVER gambled/bet on a Sharks game, NEVER gambled/bet on any of my games and NEVER thrown a hockey game.”

“The facts are I personally had my best season of my career last year,” he added, “and was the most consistent I’ve been throughout any season, I’m proud of that.”

Kane’s wife (who he calls “soon to be ex”) also accused him of abandoning his family for jaunts in Europe while she struggling to feed their child. He also refuted these claims, saying that he has always made sure they everything they have needed “and more.” Kane also said that he has tried to “de-escalate our divorce issues” and has tried to FaceTime with his daughter as much as possible, adding that his wife has been a barrier to him doing so.

In a short press release, the NHL said, in part, “The integrity of our game is paramount and the League takes these allegations very seriously. We intend to conduct a full investigation and will have no further comment at this time.”

Both the Sharks and Evander Kane have said they will cooperate with any investigation.

Kane has a history of gambling issues

Though Anna Kane’s allegations are very serious, at least some of them are, to at least some extent, believable. Evander Kane has had gambling problems in the past. In May, Professional Bank sued him for $15 million, ten times what it loaned him in 2019, accusing him of fraud when applying for the loan. The bank alleges that Kane inflated his assets and underreported his liabilities and said that he intended to declare bankruptcy when he applied for the loan.

In his January bankruptcy filing, he listed $1.5 million in gambling losses. Filing a motion in February, Zions Bancorporation said that Kane has a “serious gambling problem.”

In November 2019, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas sued Kane for alleged non-payment of half a million dollars in casino markers that it gave him in April of that year. The casino later dropped the lawsuit.

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