Coyotes general manager Mike Barnett placed a Super Bowl bet with associate coach and alleged betting ring leader Rick Tocchet, multiple sources close to the team told the Tribune Thursday.
But Barnett, who said he met with New Jersey investigators Wednesday night, said he was told that he had not broken any laws. Multiple sources also told the Tribune that Barnett had no knowledge that Tocchet was engaged in illegal activities.
“They informed me that my conduct has in no way violated either federal or state laws," Barnett said in a statement released during Thursday's game with Dallas. “Due to the ongoing investigation, I can't comment any further at this time."
When news broke Tuesday that Tocchet had been served a criminal complaint to answer charges of money laundering, conspiracy and promoting gambling, the sources said Barnett immediately called NHL commissioner Gary Bettman to tell him he'd placed the bet but that it was a “one-time deal for a few hundred dollars" on the game's over-under line.
The sources said Barnett rarely gambles but placed the bet “for fun" and
assumed it was a legal wager because Barnett knew Tocchet frequented Las Vegas.
The sources also said Barnett was told by New Jersey investigators that he would not be subpoenaed and that they no longer considered him part of the investigation. New Jersey authorities refused to confirm that information to ESPN.com Thursday.