Posted on June 28, 2019, by Travis Pulver
When the Supreme Court opened the door for states other than Nevada to legalize betting on sports there was one thing that was bound to happen. Yes, some states would jump on board quickly while others would take their time. Special interest groups would impact the process in some states and others would have no interest at all.
However, none of those things are significant enough to be considered ‘making history.’ But what New Jersey sportsbooks did in the month of May was.
They took more wagers than the books in Nevada.
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Sportsbooks in Nevada have been the leader when it comes to money handled for obvious reasons. But when other states began to get in the game, there was bound to come a time when someone as going to take more action than Nevada.
However, It took about a year for it to happen following the Supreme Court striking down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 on May 14, 2018. In the month of May, sportsbooks in New Jersey took $318.9 million in wagers; Nevada books took $317.4 million.
“I’m not surprised at all,” former state senator Raymond Lesniak told ESPN during a recent interview. “I’ve been saying all along that the Northeast and New Jersey is a hotbed of sports activity. We love our sports. We are well on our way, in overall gaming, to becoming the Las Vegas of the East Coast.”
The mark is a new high for the month of May for Nevada’s sportsbooks as well. Previously, the high was $315.8 million set back in 2015. The new high for the month comes not too long after an incredible March that saw them take $597 million in bets.
Business has been booming for books in New Jersey since sports betting was legalized last June. Since then, sportsbooks across the state have handled close to $3 billion in wagers which resulted in almost $200 million in revenue and $22.6 million in tax revenue for the state.
Approximately 80 percent of the wagers New Jersey’s sportsbooks took was via mobile applications. Pennsylvania only recently getting on board with online gambling. Consequently, New Jersey’s books likely saw a boost in business from their neighbors.
Only three operators in Pennsylvania currently offer online betting compared to all 14 in New Jersey.
They probably also saw a spike from gamblers in New York since the New York legislature has yet to approve of mobile gambling. However, there will be a few casinos in New York taking bets next football season.
With New Jersey doing so well and several other states legalizing sports betting, it would not be surprising if the books in Nevada started feeling a crunch. But the competition does not appear to have impacted Nevada sportsbooks in the least. They set a new record last year by handling over $5 billion in wagers for the first time.
Should their current pace continue throughout the remainder of 2019, there is a very good chance they will set a new record.