On Saturday morning, Chinese basketball officials launched an investigation into a suspicious playoff game between Jiangsu Dragons and Shanghai Sharks, which had a series of turnovers leading to a last-minute win for the hosts. Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) has already been involved in controversies this season, as one of the teams, named Xinjiang Flying Tigers, withdrew themselves from the league in March because of a transfer ban imposed on them before returning back two weeks later.
The third and final game of the series played at the Shanghai Indoor Stadium on April 14, saw the away team Jiangsu Dragons get in the lead by 4 points against Shanghai Sharks with a minute and 36 seconds remaining. But suddenly, the Dragons started committing a lot of turnovers which led to the Sharks getting a 10-point advantage from nowhere. The game eventually ended in favour of Shanghai Sharks by 108-104 and allowed them to qualify for the quarterfinals.
Upon seeing it all unfold, the fans and members of the media were left outraged and demanding answers from Chinese basketball officials about a potential fixing incident in favour of the home team. The CBA, headed by Yao Ming, the 8-time NBA all-star and the greatest basketball player from China, announced that they are demanding answers about what had unfolded in Shanghai too.
The statement from the governing body of Chinese basketball read, “The Chinese Basketball Association attaches great importance to the fact the match between Shanghai Sharks and Jiangsu Dragons in the CBA playoffs on April 14 sparked strong doubts from the media and fans, and asked the two clubs to report the situation in writing.”
“The Chinese Basketball Association and CBA League will conduct a comprehensive investigation of the game, and will announce the results in a timely manner after the results are obtained.”
CBA also mentioned that any rule violations in the game will be dealt with in a severe manner and they are going to defend the fairness of the league resolutely.