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David Portnoy

Dave Portnoy Comes Out Swinging Ahead of Possible New Allegations

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Jan. 24 2022, Updated 9:38 a.m. ET

David Portnoy, founder of Barstool Sports, has come out swinging in response to threats of an exposé of allegations against him. This is nothing new for Portnoy, who has faced – and rebuffed – other accusations in recent years. But in an online video addressing the issue, Portnoy is clearly done being held over a barrel over what people might say about him – and he’s letting the author of the stories – Julia Black – know exactly where they stand. 

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Portnoy Comes out Swinging

In this week’s video, Portnoy cuts right to the chase as he records himself from home. “Okay, emergency press conference time. I’m going to try to keep this brief. My old friend, that scumbag Julia Black, is back to her old tricks. Her and Henry Blodget at Business Insider.”

It’s round two of accusations for Portnoy, who explains, “I got an email yesterday like, ‘Hey Dave, here’s a billion new allegations against you about being a sexual deviant, about being some sort of pervert, you should be in jail. You’ve got to respond in 24 hours, by 12:30 on Thursday, or we’re printing it.”

Portnoy explains that the first time this happened, he didn’t know what to do – so he didn’t respond. But that the witnesses they referenced in the Business Insider exposé were frauds – and their claims proven untrue, according to Portnoy. 

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The Original Beef

In response to the original allegations, Portnoy shared police reports that contradicted his accusers, and screenshots that he says prove that they wanted to be with him – that he didn’t force anyone or act inappropriately. 

So what are the original accusations? It all started in November 2021 – at least, that’s when it all went public. A Business Insider piece by Julia Black suggested that Portnoy had engaged in sex with multiple women who say the encounters turned forceful, painful, and humiliating. 

The piece stops short of calling Portnoy a rapist – but it heavily implies it. According to Black, multiple women shared their explicit online exchanges with Portnoy, and were afraid to come forward with accusations publicly because of his well-known nature as a rabble-rouser and outspoken influencer.

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Portnoy in the latest video, however, does not use the names of the women and only offers to share the proof that defends his character if Black publishes her piece. It’s a different side than the public is used to seeing from the right-wing commentator known for saying offensive things. Of course, part of that is legal strategy – but part of it seems to be Portnoy’s desire to see it all just die down. 

None of the women outright say Portnoy raped them, but the underlying suggestion is that he’s violent and has sexual appetites that many consider distasteful. Fans of Portnoy are skeptical, saying that consensual sex can have a broad range of “normal,” and consent is the key. 

Is it Court Time?

David Portnoy

In the video, Portnoy says he wants Black to publish the new accusations so he can sue. Portnoy’s lawyers have advised that if he releases the proof first, it doesn’t work on his favor because he can’t claim defamation, so he’s in a holding pattern. Black gave him until yesterday to respond – which he did – and so far, Black and the team at Business Insider seems hesitant to move forward. Most likely, they’re triple and quadruple checking their sources to avoid defamation – it’s not defamation if it’s true. 

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Portnoy seems to suggest in the new video that Black’s efforts to take him down are related to political view. He suggests that it’s a liberal attempt to take him down as a member of the right-wing media. Portnoy also calls the accusations in the new piece “4’s” compared to the “10’s” in the first piece. He says they’re still bad – if true, which they aren’t, according to Portnoy. But compared to the first story, he suggests it’s a weak attempt. 

The video ends with Portnoy egging Business Insider on to publish the piece, saying he’s ready with evidence – and ready to sue. As of 7PM ET on Friday January 21, 2022 – no piece has been released. Portnoy categorically denies the original accusations and whatever the new ones are as well – which we will see if/when Business Insider publishes the story. 

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