Former NBA’er Charles Oakley Banned from Vegas Casino for Cheating at Ultimate Texas Hold’em Game

3 min read

Charles Oakley has joined OJ Simpson on the list of former athletes banned from the Cosmopolitan hotel and casino in Las Vegas. The long-time New York Knicks forward was caught on video three times allegedly cheating the casino in an Ultimate Texas Hold’em table game.

Charles Oakley Cosmopolitan cheating
Former NBA basketball player Charles Oakley was banned from the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas for allegedly cheating the casino in Ultimate Texas Hold’em. (Image:

The Cosmopolitan isn’t the only property that has banned Oakley. The “Oak Tree” has also been 86’ed from the New York arena where he played basketball for 11 seasons. The NBA veteran was banned after getting into a physical altercation with arena security during a 2017 Knicks game, although that one-year suspension is set to expire this week.

He won’t be allowed to return to the Cosmopolitan any time soon though, if ever. Not after allegedly cheating the casino on three different occasions.

Banned for Cheating

According to court documents obtained by TMZ, Oakley was arrested at the casino on July 8 and charged with felony fraud for attempting to cheat the house. On one occasion, he is alleged to have pulled a $100 chip back after realizing he was going to lose the hand. On two other occasions, he is accused of adding $125 to a bet after winning the hand.

Ultimate Texas Hold’em is a popular poker-themed table game played against the house. Three community cards are dealt face-up along with two face-down cards to the player and dealer. After the player sees their cards, they can decide to check or raise the bet and then the dealer flips over the community cards.

If the player’s five-card poker hand beats the dealer, the player wins. If not, the house scoops the pot. Oakley is accused of attempting to sneak additional chips when the dealer wasn’t looking in hands he won and removing a chip late in a hand he lost. It is illegal to cheat the house and could be punishable by fines and prison sentences.

In the old days of Las Vegas, back when the mob ran the town, casinos were known to cut off fingers and knock people out for cheating.

Fortunately, for Oakley, the felony charges have since been reduced to a misdemeanor disorderly conduct which is likely to amount to a small fine and a scolding. But he can no longer visit the Cosmopolitan, a casino he’s spent nearly 120 hours playing Ultimate Texas Hold’em.

Basketball Troublemaker?

Oakley has been the center of controversy ever since his rookie year with the Chicago Bulls in 1985-1986. He was considered one of the NBA’s “bad boys” during the 1980s and 1990s for his physical style of play.

“Oak” wasn’t one to shy away from a confrontation on the court and was often the instigator of brawls. After the 1980s Detroit Pistons, the team known as the “bad boys,” faded into oblivion, the Knicks took over as the NBA’s dirtiest team thanks in large part to Oakley’s rough play and sometimes violent behavior.

Now, apparently, he’s still playing dirty, just in a different game. Old habits never die.

Related Posts

Did you know about our poker forum? Discuss all the latest poker news in the CardsChat forum

Popular Stories