Sports betting has been a long standing issue in the United States. Outside of Nevada and a couple of casinos on Indian territories, people could not bet on sports. Horse racing was the only sport that people could bet on, outside Nevada. Some would turn to then illegal online sports betting, but many kept quiet and waited for things to unfold.
Things did unfold in 2018 after New Jersey legalized sports betting prior to the FIFA 2018 World Cup with the governor Phil Murphy placing the first bet, on Germany to win the World Cup. After sports betting was legalized in New Jersey, other states followed up, pretty quickly, and currently sports betting is legal in 8 states with 19 more looking to legalize sports betting.
Does that mean that sports betting will become a trend in the USA?
Workarounds Before Legal Sports Betting
Virtual private networks exist for a reason, the primary one being the safety and anonymity of the user. Many users turn to VPNs to hide their own internet access. Many used VPNs to bet on sports, even in the United States, where it was essentially illegal in most states, or while not strictly illegal, then in a very gray area of the law. Since people were already gambling, although the most passionate and handy fans, it does not look like sports betting will become a major trend.
People had workarounds regarding sports betting, which is having friends in other countries in the world. Seeing how financial transfers are not illegal, people would just transfer money to a friend’s account and have them bet on whichever sports event was in question. That, while a slight hassle and a loss of money due to the percentage taken by banks or online payment services, was a functional way to bet on sports. Legalizing sports betting just makes it easier for certain citizens, primarily those who reside in the states where sports betting is legal.
The Non-Uniformity of States Will Slow Possible Trending
Since states can legalize sports betting on their own accord, when they desire, that might stop or slow down any potential trendiness of sports betting. The PASPA act of 1992 which banned sports betting was found to be unconstitutional, leaving everything in the hands of each of the states’ governments. Since not all states legalized sports betting and some are not even looking into drafting the laws, the trend of sports betting will probably never happen.
People might go on more frequent vacations to other states or contact their friends to place bets for them.
Sports Betting is Gambling – Both are not Trending
Sports betting will become more popular, that much is obvious, but not by a large margin. Since it is essentially gambling, the people who used to gamble will continue to gamble, and only sports fans might turn to sports betting as a potential way of having fun.
A rise of sports fans turning to sports betting should be expected, but nothing wild like the opening hours of tech stores on Black Friday.
Sports betting, while very interesting and perhaps novel to some people in the United States, is not looking to be a new trend, but rather, an activity which is available and for some people, entertaining at times.