Since May 2018, the Federal ban on sports gambling has been lifted in the United States. After this crucial moment in the gambling industry in the US, several states have ventured into the sports gambling sector in search of high profits to be found in this industry. So far, twenty states have legal sports betting of some sort.
California, usually the leader when it comes to changes, has kept quiet on this matter. Well, until Wednesday when there was a meeting between the Senate and the California Assembly. After the hearing, a consensus appeared. Suddenly, sports betting becomes a reality. Jake Williams from the Sportsradar, a company that deals with sports data gathering and analysis, says that: “A regulated market is the surest way to ensure the highest integrity standards”.
Transparency and Legality
Transparency is an important factor in legalizing gambling and one of the ways in which it is ensured is using websites such as Sportsradar. These types of sites discover illegal activities by finding piled up bets or similar things using AI and machine learning tools. According to Matt Shelby from the Oregon lottery, who is strongly for the legalized market: “If something is amiss you see weird betting patterns.”
A lawyer from the Major League Baseball, Brian Seeley, agrees with Shelby: “Illegal operators do not comply with my investigations,” Brian said, indicating that a legal sector is the best way of subduing the illegal market.
Legal Industry Revenue
Additionally, the other upside of legalized betting is the revenue. As Chris Grove, an analyst of the gaming industry from Eilers & Krejcik Gaming implies, the legal sports gaming industry provides approximately $1 billion in revenue yearly. By the end of 2023, it is estimated that this revenue is going to rise to $6 billion.
There are 5 MLB clubs, 4 NFL and 4 NBA clubs in California, and it is estimated that they could get around $2.5 billion in revenue from the sports betting sector.
Some are skeptical about taxes from legalization from a previously illegal market since the promises about revenue from legal marijuana haven’t fulfilled the promises but Grove implies that the secret is to keep tax rates reasonable and below 20%.
There are loads of benefits from legalizing sports betting and it seems California is on its way. The next step is voting.