NHL suspends Senators’ Shane Pinto 41 games for violating league’s gambling policy

Ottawa Senators center Shane Pinto was suspended 41 games for violating the NHL’s gambling policy, the league announced on Thursday. 

The 22-year-old becomes the first player in the NHL to be suspended for a gambling violation since the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for legalized sports wagering in 2018.

The NHL released a statement announcing the suspension, adding that an investigation into the violation “found no evidence” that Pinto bet on NHL games. 

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“The NHL considers this matter closed, absent the emergence of new information, and will have no further comment,” the statement added. 

Pinto, playing in his fourth season with the Senators, released a statement taking responsibility for his actions leading up to the suspension. 

“I want to apologize to the National Hockey League, the Ottawa Senators, my teammates, the fans and city of Ottawa and most importantly my family. I take full responsibility for my actions and look forward to getting back on the ice with my team.”

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The Senators also released a statement saying that the organization would “welcome” Pinto back “as one of our own” in time.

“Shane is a valued member of our hockey club; an engaging, intelligent young man who made poor decisions that have resulted in a suspension by the National Hockey League. We know he is remorseful for his mistakes.

“The Ottawa Senators fully support the NHL’s rules on gambling. While saddened to learn of this issue, the entire organization remains committed to Shane and will work together to do what is necessary to help provide the support to allow him to address his issues and become a strong contributor to our community.”

The statement continued, “When the time is right and with the league’s blessing, we will welcome him back to the organization and embrace him as one of our own.”

Pinto, a restricted free agent, has played three seasons with the Senators. According to ESPN, the suspension is retroactive to the start of the season.

 

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