Sports Betting in the USA

By Jen van Lier | June 25, 2018

sports betting in us

Sports Betting in the USA has historically been complicated, since in a lot of the states it is illegal. Conservative government officials and voting public are of the thinking that legalizing sports betting in America would lead to a general degradation of society and to fixing of matches especially at a collegiate level, where the issue had already reared its ugly head before. This point of view is changing quite rapidly as a lot of states face financial woes due to tough economic times. The revenue that sports betting can generate would undoubtedly ease the financial pressure.

The American Gaming Association estimates that the illegal sports betting market is valued at about $150 billion-a-year, which could be going to the states that are not benefiting from sports betting at this point. While New Jersey headed up the fight for Legal Sports Betting in America, it is estimated that 32 states will choose to offer Legal Sports Betting as well. This will help bolster the individual states financial affairs with the increased Tax Revenue.

Cryptocurrency Facilitates Sports Betting in the USA

The provably fair and transparent decentralized betting market will play a crucial role once states start opening their jurisdictions to it. Online gambling is exploding with a growing number of users looking for cryptocurrency sportsbooks. The Supreme Court ruling in the US on the other hand, has potentially positioned cryptocurrency sportsbooks and Blockchain products in a very favourable position for increased growth and interest within the industry.

But this will take time. The ruling from the Supreme Court did not legalize sports betting. It merely pulled down a Federal Law called Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) which banned betting on sports in all states except Nevada.  There is still the Wire Act which prevents interstate betting. Online Bookmakers facilitate the easier access to cross state betting.

Where are Americans Currently Betting?

So, if sports betting is not yet legal in the US, where are Americans currently betting? Various states are continually fighting for legalization across the states, to allow people in other states to bet in their state. New Jersey is leading the charge. However currently most of the sportsbooks US residents are using are based outside of the United States.  The most common overseas based books are located in Malta, Antigua, Curacao, The Isle of Man and other territories such as Kahnawake. Cryptocurrency sportsbooks allow Americans to do this with ease.

While Sportsbooks are not illegal in the United States, it is unlawful to run a US-based sportsbook.  When looking for a sportsbook, it is advisable to use the top recommended sites as many are scams. It is tough to sift through all the incorrect information if gleaning it from Google. The apparent consensus is that out of all the sportsbooks available for US residents, Bovada, 5Dimes, and Bookmaker lead the pack. They seem to have proven themselves amongst industry players and punters as reliable, trustworthy and offering a wide range of events covered.

The Future of Sports Betting in the USA 

Nevertheless, new sportsbooks that use cryptocurrencies are increasingly appealing to Americans. Blockchain betting is being used by US punters to overcome the restraints they face. US states are going to have to develop a stable and well thought out sports betting module to ensure that it is viable and satisfies the needs of everyone involved.

For the tax revenue to work for the state, the state will have to take into consideration the needs of the following groups:

  • The sports betting public
  • The commercial casino
  • Native Tribes
  • Racetrack Operators
  • Lottery Providers

Without this consideration, the states may find themselves creating products that do not fulfill the tax revenue desired or are not going to be used widely.

Conclusion

The US has a long way to go after the Supreme Court Ruling on May 2018.  It won’t be an easy road ahead to get all the players on board as well as the betting public. In the meantime, cryptocurrencies offer an attractive solution for US players to be able to bet on a wide variety of events, with a multitude of bet types on offer too.

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