As New Jersey sports betting decision moves closer analysts put $150b value on market


  • AGA figures suggest $150 billion wagered on sports each year
  • Sports leagues get ready for anticipated legalization
  • New Jersey decision expected by July


The debate over legalized sports betting in the United States is hotting up ahead of the Supreme Court’s decision on New Jersey’s challenge to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which prohibits sports betting under federal law.

Bookmakers, gamblers and sports leagues are making preparations for an anticipated approval of legal betting in New Jersey, which would open the door for other states looking to introduce sports wagers, or other forms of gambling.

AGA puts $150 billion tag on US sports bet market

The potential income of a legal sports market is unclear, but the American Gaming Association puts a conservative estimate on it of around $150 billion.

Many states are recognizing that there is a public demand for sports betting, and also that it could offer a valuable income stream for cash-strapped states.

Even sports leagues are beginning to warm to the idea of a legal sports betting market. The NFL, the NBA and even the NHL have limited their lobbying efforts against gambling services, reports ESPN, and are making preparations for a potential future with legal sports betting.

New Jersey backed by lawmakers and states

The four states who have legal sports betting already are able to so as their existing state laws carried an exclusion clause when the 1992 PASPA legislation was introduced.

Now New Jersey is about to become a test case for other states who want the same rights to determine their own gambling laws.

When the Supreme Court hears New Jersey’s challenge to PASPA, they will also hear evidence from 20 other states who have signed in support of New Jersey’s bid to self-determine on sports betting.

Even Nevada, which currently has a near monopoly on sports betting, welcomes legalization as it will improve regulatory standards nationally and reduce the influence of the black market.

The AGA is also throwing its weight behind New Jersey’s campaign. “PASPA is an outdated and failed law,” the association’s CEO Geoff Freeman told reporters recently. The group is actively lobbying representatives who could use their vote to bring sports betting to New Jersey.

Leading attorneys and industry insiders are predicting a win for New Jersey, reports ESPN, and the sports leagues are ready to call for regulation and set the rules of the game.