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Report: Betting probe behind coach James Krause being pulled from UFC Vegas 65

An ongoing investigation into betting irregularities reportedly kept coach James Krause out of the corner of Miles Johns

Moments after winning his fight at UFC Vegas 65, Miles Johns, who fights out of Glory MMA, told UFC commentator Michael Bisping, “My coach (James Krause), last night at the dinner table, got pulled and they said the UFC was suspending him so he couldn’t be here in my corner…” According to reports, Krause has not been formally suspended, but he was pulled from the event because of the ongoing investigation into betting irregularities surrounding the November 5 bout between the Krause-coached Darrick Minner and Shayilan Nuerdanbieke.

In the hours leading up to that fight, which took place on the UFC Vegas 64 card at the UFC Apex, Nuerdanbieke moved from a -220 favorite to -420. U.S. Integrity, a company that investigates betting irregularities, caught the line movement and notified sportsbooks. The organization also noted increased bets for Nuerdanbieke to win via first-round knockout and for the bout to last fewer than 2.5 rounds.

The bets that came in on Nuerdanbieke, who had zero previous finishes with the UFC, cashed when Nuerdanbieke capitalized on an injury to Minner’s leg and scored a knockout win 1:07 into the contest.

Following UFC Vegas 65, ESPN reported that while Krause had not been formally suspended by the UFC or the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC), the two organizations decided that the coach should not corner fighters while there is an open investigation. In addition to his coaching duties, Krause runs a Discord channel that focuses on MMA betting.

U.S. Integrity is not the only organization looking into the Nuerdanbieke vs Minner bout. Following UFC Vegas 64, the UFC released a statement that it would be looking into the betting around the fight.

“Like many professional sports organizations, UFC works with an independent betting integrity service to monitor wagering activity on our events,” the UFC statement read. “Our betting integrity partner, Don Best Sports, a leading global supplier of real-time betting data for North American sporting events, will conduct a thorough review of the facts and report its findings. At this time, we have no reason to believe either of the athletes involved in the bout, or anyone associated with their teams, behaved in an unethical or irresponsible manner.”

In mid-October, the UFC updated its code of conduct to prevent fighters from betting on UFC fights. The memo also noted:

“Athletes should also be aware that in most states these same prohibitions apply to some or all of (i) relatives living in the same household as an athlete. (ii) an athlete’s coaches, managers, handlers, athletic trainers, medical professionals and staff and (iii) any other person with access to non-public information regarding participants in any MMA match.”

The UFC released a statement to ESPN following UFC Vegas 65, which read:

”The wagering activity around the Darrick Minner and Shayilan Nuerdanbieke bout from November 5 remains under review by our betting integrity partner Don Best Sports. At this time, we have no information that either of the athletes involved in the bout, or anyone associated with their teams, was involved in any wrongdoing.”

Earlier this week, Nevada Deputy Attorney General Joel Bekker said during the NSAC meeting that an “injury occurred during training” and that the result of that pre-fight injury, “had all kind of effects on betting lines.”

Bekker added, “I believe we’re going to also take action against him for not disclosing the injury.”

The commission plans to address the issue at its next meeting. During the November meeting, the NSAC took action against Ilir Latifi for not disclosing a medical condition before his most recent fight.

In a precedent-setting ruling, the commission suspended Latifi for three months for not disclosing a staph infection on his pre-fight medical questionnaire. When handing down Latifi’s punishment, the commission noted that future repercussions could be more severe.

The NSAC did not comment on why Krause was not allowed to coach Johns at UFC Vegas 65.

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