Socialist Worker

Shocking tales of corruption at the top tier of sport

by Sam Ord
Issue No. 2776

Bad Sport tells the story of impoverished college basketball players who succumbed to bribery

Bad Sport tells the story of impoverished college basketball players who succumbed to bribery


Bad Sport is a great true crime documentary series that takes a deep look into scandals in professional sports.

The series follows six stories told by athletes, coaches, bosses and authorities.

It offers an often overlooked perspective from all sides of the story, particularly those who were sentenced to long prison sentences.

Even if you remember some of the scandals, the series offers a fresh perspective, with high profile interviews and uncovered media files.

The episodes include college basketball match fixing, a racecar team funded by drug smuggling, and ref‑bribing in top tier Italian football.

The first episode shows the exact process of how a young gambler offers Arizona State college basketball players money in exchange for fixing matches in 1994. It’s almost a “how to match fix” guide.

Sport and the system—whose game are we playing?
Sport and the system—whose game are we playing?
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The athletes are on the road to the top of the sport—the NBA.

They explain how they were chasing a dream after growing up in poverty in underdeveloped, working class areas.

All the players were at university on basketball scholarships. Some players were given just £95 monthly to live on.

Many players were skipping meals and were financially forced into accepting a gambler’s offer of £20,000 each match—while he made millions in profits.

Other episodes show shocking corruption at the Winter Olympics and international cricket.

From greedy capitalists to desperate athletes and everything in between, this Netflix series offers insight into a hidden underbelly of competitive sport.

Bad Sport is available now on Netflix

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