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Shohei Ohtani Holds First Press Conference Following Gambling Scandal

Shohei Ohtani Following last week’s breaking news regarding a major illegal gambling-related scandal, baseball superstar Shohei Ohtani held a press conference from Dodgers‘ stadium this Monday afternoon. As CasinoGamesPro reported, his interpreter Ippei Mizuhara has been accused of a massive theft worth at least $4.5 Million in wire transfers from the player’s bank account to a bookmaking operation.

The Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter publicly discussed the scandal that has disturbed Major League Baseball and much of the sports world. The two-way player read his statement in installments so his new interpreter, Will Ireton could interpret from Japanese to English. As a team spokesperson has conveyed, the two would work together at least for the immediate future.

The press conference opened with the high-profile athlete thanking those in attendance and the media for being patient amid the major-scale scandal. Ohtani did not fail to express his personal feelings by underlining that he was “very saddened and shocked” that someone close to him would have acted so.

Ohtani Details His Side of the Story

Ohtani Details His Side of the Story Considering the ongoing federal and league investigations, the former Los Angeles Angels star said he would just read his statement and refrain from answering any further questions from journalists. Getting straight to the matter, Ohtani said he had never bet on baseball or any other sport and denied asking somebody else to place wagers on his behalf. He confirmed that he had not been aware of the problem “up until a couple of days ago”.

The professional baseball player said what various media outlets have already conveyed, namely, that his former interpreter has been stealing money from his bank account to support his gambling addiction.

The Japanese baseball pitcher explained that his interpreter had lied following media inquiries regarding his potential involvement in the gambling scandal. Ippei Mizuhara’s initial version of the story was that Ohtani had paid off his debts. He did realize his interpreter had incurred a gambling debt worth millions of dollars at the time after his first game in South Korea.

What followed next, as Ohtani described, was contacting his representatives, attorneys, and the LA Dodgers. The player once again underlined that he had never agreed to make any wire transfers to the bookmaking operation run by Mathew Bowyer.

The twice MVP concluded his statement by saying that as the season was due to start, he would need to concentrate on his performance and let his attorneys tackle the matter: “I’m looking forward to focusing on the season”. However, he confirmed his readiness to fully cooperate and assist in the investigations.

The major scandal shook the sports world last Wednesday when the LA Dodgers dismissed Mizuhara while the team was in South Korea for the season-opening series against the San Diego Padres.

The case is subject to ongoing investigations both by the Internal Revenue Service and Major League Baseball. As per the internal rules of the professional league, players and employees are prohibited from placing bets on baseball games, with a year-long suspension being the penalty. Those who wager on games they are related to in some way face life-long suspensions.

 Author: Harrison Young

Harrison Young is an experienced writer, who started his career almost 8 years ago. Prior to joining our team at CasinoGamesPro, he worked as an editor for a small magazine.