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“I would compartmentalize the industry for the same reason you compartmentalize ships,” explains former City Group CEO John Reed. “So that if you spring a leak, the leak doesn’t spread and bring the entire vessel down.” As the fallout from the suspicious line movement detected at UFC Vegas 64 continues to irradiate the mixed martial arts landscape, Glory MMA coach James Krause and his network of fighters continue to be the focus of the media and multiple ongoing government investigations despite mounting evidence which suggests that the true extent of this betting syndicate operation may very well eclipse UFC Vegas 64 by quite a number of years in scope.
“UFC flyweight Jeff Molina, who has worked with Krause as a member of the Glory MMA team, has been suspended by the NSAC,” writes Trent Reinsmith in his December 26, 2022 BloodyElbow.com article titled, “Report: FBI involved in UFC betting probe.”
“Molina, who is the No. 13 ranked fighter in the official UFC flyweight rankings, was scheduled to compete at UFC Vegas 67 on January 14,” explains Reinsmith. ”However, he withdrew from that event in early December.”
Krause, who previously enjoyed an unusual level of support from the UFC prior to his current plight with the NSAC, initially made headlines in early August following an interview with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour where he went on to announce his retirement.
“James Krause is calling it a career as a fighter in mixed martial arts (MMA), but he’s still keeping a very close eye on the sport he loves,” writes Drake Riggs in his August 1, 2022 MMAMania.com article titled, ”Newly retired James Krause: ‘I make more money gambling on MMA than I do anything else'.”
“Quite the betting man,” explains Riggs, “these days, gambling has been a huge source of income for the Newport News, Va., native — so much so that he’d be just fine living off it.
“I bet every single card just about every fight,” explains Krause. “I have a Discord [server], like 2,000 members in it, we crush it. Last week, we destroyed it. I take over people’s accounts and play for them, I do pretty well. I make more money gambling on MMA than I do anything else.”
Described by the NY Post as a betting syndicate operation, the admission by Krause is essentially no different than the proxy bidding which landed "the official sports betting partner of the UFC" in hot water earlier this year.
“New Jersey gambling regulators have fined betting website DraftKings $150,000 for allowing a Florida man to make online sports bets from his home by having a friend who was present in New Jersey place the bets for him,” explains Wayne Parry in his March 3, 2022 USNews.com article titled, “New Jersey Fines DraftKings $150,000 for Allowing Proxy Bidding.”
According to the report, “In an action made public Wednesday, the New Jersey Division of Gambling Enforcement revealed it has reached a settlement with Boston-based DraftKings concerning the so-called proxy betting incidents that are forbidden under state regulations.
“DraftKings also agreed to a series of corrective actions, including voiding 21 bets the Florida man had made that were still pending, closing his account for proxy betting, and better training its employees to recognize and prevent such activity.”
With DraftKings having previously been fined for proxy bidding while also having been trained to better recognize such activity in the future, it’s interesting to consider the timeline of events which would later go on to transpire surrounding the suspicious line movement at UFC Vegas 64.
A problem which the UFC had previously encountered between Tae Hyun Bang and Leo Kuntz at UFC Fight Night 79 back in 2015, curiously, the UFC was actively monitoring the suspicious line movement prior to the Bang vs. Kuntz fight while the fight at UFC Vegas 64 between Nuerdanbieke and Minner was allowed to commence unabated.
The implications of which suggests that both the UFC and DraftKings Sportsbook were equipped with the necessary information to recognize and prevent the controversy at UFC Vegas 64 from happening prior to the fight actually commencing, yet it appears they chose to do nothing instead.
In fact, not only does the UFC have a prior history of suspicious line movements but they’ve also been known to use astroturfing campaigns in an effort to impersonate fans online according to a June 23, 2010 MiddleEasy.com article titled, "In 2006, Dana White Approved Of People ‘Posing As Fans’ And ‘Leaking’ Videos To Message Boards.”
Interestingly, an email which surfaced during the Viacom vs. YouTube lawsuit suggests that both the UFC and Spike TV approved of the use of viral marketing companies, who, for all intents and purposes acted as proxy agents in disseminating selective information for the promotion online. A role which is not unlike that of Krause proxy bidding for prospective clients, the fact thousands of accounts were reportedly affected by a recent hack at DraftKings Sportsbook is food for thought in light of everything that we’ve learned about this point shaving syndicate so far.
“DraftKings Sportsbook was hit with some withdrawal requests this weekend,” writes Erich Richter in his November 23, 2022 NYPost.com article titled, “DraftKings accounts hacked for $300,000 as sportsbooks get targeted.”
“DraftKings is aware that some customers are experiencing irregular activity with their accounts,” explains co-founder Paul Liberman. “We currently believe that the login information of these customers was compromised on other websites and then used to access their DraftKings accounts where they used the same login information.”
With mediums like Krause’s Discord group potentially serving as perfect vectors for such fraudulent activity online, the ultimate identity of any number of the alleged thousands of members in his Discord server could lead back to anyone or anything from viral marketing companies to some of the most recognizable names in the combat sports entertainment industry today. The previous proxy bidding troubles of DraftKings Sportsbook in light of the UFC’s own prior experience with suspicious line movements raising more questions than answers; as the justification for compartmentalizing elements of this story to Krause and his band of Glory MMA fighters alone becomes increasingly clear. "So that if you spring a leak, the leak doesn't spread and bring the entire vessel down."