Did Bobby Riggs Take a Dive in Tennis 'Battle of the Sexes?'

ESPN investigation alleges Riggs threw the match against Billie Jean King to settle mob debts.
2:42 | 08/27/13

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Transcript for Did Bobby Riggs Take a Dive in Tennis 'Battle of the Sexes?'
shocking allegations about one of the most famous tennis matches in history. They called it the battle of the sexes, pitting bobby riggs against billie jean king. A new report from espn says the match was rigged. Abc's gio benitez with the details. This is really something. It is. Good morning. Espn investigation everyone's talking about. Alleging that bobby riggs intentionally threw the match in order to settle gambling debts with the mob. It was more than a showdown. It was a spectacle. Live from the astrodome in houston, texas, the tennis battle of the sexes. Billie jean king, versus bobby riggs. Reporter: Millions watched as 55-year-old bobby riggs, entered the astrodome in september 1973. I'm howard cosell. We're delighted to be able to bring you this quaint, unique event. Reporter: Riggs planned to crush the female wimbledon champ, billie jean king. I think that was not expected by most. Reporter: But when the dust settled -- the game is over. Reporter: King had won. Proving, yes, a woman could beat a man on a tennis court. In an espn "outside the lines" exclusive, this man, hal shaw, says it was all fixed. Shaw was an assistant golf pro at a florida country club. He said months before the match, he overheard two mobsters. They brought up the name of bobby riggs. And riggs had assured him that he was going to tank. And he'll make it look and appear that he's trying his best. But billie jean king is just overwhelming him. Reporter: Espn's john van natta told the story. I was not going to move forward with this story unless i believed him to be someone who was absolutely credible. Reporter: In an interview with espn, king disputes that account. I would bet my life that bobby never had that discussion with him. Bobby didn't get involved with mobsters. Reporter: Not true said riggs' son. Did he know mafia guys? Absolutely. Is it possible that he talked to them about doing it? Possible. Reporter: If the story is true, riggs took his secret to the grave when he died in 1995. George? Wow. Surprising his son says it's possible. I know. I want to believe it wasn't true. I know. No, it's not.

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