What is Point Shaving

Gambling, the term itself does not ring a good bell whenever heard as from time immemorial this activity has been associated with crooks and unlawful people. Nevertheless, gambling has taken a new turn nowadays and no more do people shirk away from the very mention of it. Gambling in these days is associated with most of the organized sports. Huge chunk of money is getting rotated every day close to a sports activity, primarily witnessed around games like National Basketball Association, National Football League and also National Collegiate Athletic association. One such activity which is related to the illegal practice of intentionally limiting the points that could be scored by a team in an organized sport including College athletic contest is “Point shaving”. In simple terms it is another type of match fixing, wherein the player or players involved might deliberately miss shots or create turnovers thereby preventing his team in covering a specific point spread. Spread point is a type of gambling on the outcome of the event, wherein the said gambling involves a range of outcomes and the bet is whether the outcome falls below or above the range. A handsome bribe is offered to the player or players involved for not covering the spread points.

The activity of Point shaving is often associated with the sports of basketball and football. However the sport of basketball is more likely to be victim of this illegal activity. The reason behind is that, basketball is one of the easiest sports, wherein a player can easily influence the scoring tempo by missing important shots or committing timed fouls. Another technique used in the same context is to manipulate the final score which leads to the result falling within the predetermined score.

NCCA and other colleges along with have adopted a policy of Zero tolerance against any such illegal activities that provoked gambling or kinds match fixing. The consequences could be losing the scholarship, getting expelled from the institution they are playing for or even a permanent record made about the player which will not let him play anymore for any of the colleges or universities. Therefore with such strict laws in place and the severe consequences, point shaving today has notably come down, though they happen rarely in collegiate sports.

Few of the prominent cases of point shaving were one, the scandal which involved seven colleges and the key players from the City College of New York (CCNY) in the year 1950-51, another being the Point shaving scandal of Boston College Basketball wherein few of the college players were bribed by underworld figures which let in lot of gambling activity. The recent one was traced in 2004 involving almost 25 players including the match referee, from German Football association.