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FanDuel Comes Under Fire For Connection With Shams Charania at NBA Draft

Written by: Michael Savio
Published June 27, 2023
6 min read
Fanduel Shams Charania NBA Draft

While the 2023 NBA Draft brought plenty of excitement to the NBA world last week, it also landed FanDuel in hot water. The controversy centers around their connection to top-level NBA reporter Shams Charania and his reporting at the draft. While there is no definitive evidence of impropriety, many bettors are crying foul.

The controversy centers around a tweet from Charania that stated that NBA prospect Scoot Henderson was gaining momentum to be selected second overall in the draft. Within 20 minutes of the tweet, FanDuel dropped his odds of being selected second to -380. The issue is that Henderson was not drafted second, leading to many bettors losing even more money when betting on Charania’s tip on FanDuel. 

Charania is a regular on FanDuel’s sports network, providing inside information and expert insight to help bettors make NBA picks. The reporter is not allowed to open a FanDuel Sportsbook account to avoid accusations of an improper relationship. Still, it has not stopped this controversy from capturing headlines nationwide.

Did FanDuel and Charania Break the Law?

While the US is still trying to figure out the rules and regulations around sportsbooks and their relationships, there is no evidence that FanDuel or Charania broke any laws. The sportsbook has followed the rules in its relationship with the respected reporter, leading many experts to dismiss the idea of a scandal.

This is not the first time we have seen an NBA insider call a draft pick wrong, but it is the first time we have had it from a reporter that works with a major sportsbook. That, along with the massive amount of money bet on the draft, has caused this story to receive extra scrutiny from lawmakers and the media alike.

What to Expect Next

There is no action or investigation around this controversy, but we may see sportsbooks and possibly even state legislatures change their policies around working with league insiders. It could also lead to a change in how sportsbooks handle pro sports drafts going forward.

“I don’t think there is anything nefarious going on, but I find it puzzling that a regulated Sportsbook is allowed to take bets on the NBA draft and also employ an “insider” who can tweet nonsense that can move the betting markets,” Mavs former front office member and pro bettor Haralabos Vargoulis tweeted about the controversy.

Vargoulis’s thoughts have been echoed by many and could lead to significant changes in how sportsbooks cover drafts going forward. While more regulations and oversight could help, sportsbooks may find it easier to simply eliminate their relationships with league insiders to avoid controversy going forward.

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Michael Savio

412 Articles

Michael is an avid sports fan and a veteran bettor from Milwaukee. He learned the trade from his grandfather in Las Vegas as a kid and has turned that into a successful career. He cheers for all Wisconsin pro teams along with his Alma Mater Arizona State. He specializes in baseball betting, but has experience in football, basketball, and hockey as well. When he isn’t pouring over stats, he’s spending time with his two young children.

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