5 myths of sports betting legalization

How will it be regulated? How involved will the government be? Will it be federal enforcement or on a state level?

I see the same trend happening if sports betting gets legalized in the U.S. bookmaking powerhouse William Hill has already set up an operation in New Jersey, and MGM CEO Jim Murren has said his company is interested in expansion.

Here are the top five myths about legalizing sports betting and why they’re wrong:

Here’s an example. I will likely have to put money on deposit to do so. The two biggest reasons people bet with bookies (beyond the lack of alternatives) are the convenience and the line of credit.

Once games happen, the stats are public domain. The U.S. In addition, customers are far more inclined to place a wager when they don’t have to put any money down.

While it seems that the question of legalizing sports betting presently is more of an if than a when, there remains a great deal of uncertainty regarding what it would look like. District Court Judge Mary Ann Medler ruled in favor of CBC, stating that “statistics are part of the public domain and can be used at no cost by fantasy companies.” One would infer that the same would apply to legal bookmaking operations.

Myth No. Say I set up an account with Legal Sportsbook A. Yes, trademark images and logos would be a different story, so I could see the leagues getting marketing deals, but I don’t see that as a huge windfall for the leagues.

Until many of these questions are answered, it will be difficult to draw any hard conclusions about the ramifications of legalized sports gambling in the U.S. “The Donaghy controversy also made me aware how important it is that we have a way of monitoring irregular activity on our games,” Silver said. I am concerned that the overall pie, even with online gambling, may not be large enough for the leagues to make the money they are hoping for.

I understand the argument that legalized sports betting could expose more people to gambling and the increased ease and access will create more problem gamblers, but I simply don’t buy it. Purdum, an expert on the subject, has been vocal in his belief that online sports gambling will need to be a big part of the new legalization plan, and I share his belief, as betting on a phone and computer is simply much more convenient than driving to a brick-and-mortar sports book and making a wager. 3: It will put local illegal bookies out of business

Myth No. These days, most bookies provide both a phone number and website where bets can be made. “But for the FBI knocking on our door and notifying us about Donaghy’s betting, none of the systems that we then had in place had captured any betting by Tim Donaghy.”

Since bookies will not have to pay taxes or licensing fees, they will be able to offer better margins or incentives to their customers. It’s a pretty reasonable assumption that it’s easier to fix a game in an environment where most of the money wagered is impossible to discover or track by the government. Concerts, shows, high-end nightclubs and restaurants draw people to Vegas as much as the gambling does. 5: It will create greater risk for game fixing

Myth No. This credit relationship will be hard for many gamblers to give up.

In the most relevant case, CBC, the parent company of CDM Sports, a fantasy provider, sued MLBAM after being denied a new fantasy sports license. Vegas has had to reinvent itself as a place that is about more than just gambling. Illegal sports betting has some characteristics that can lead to problem gambling more than legal betting would.. Are fewer people gambling because they can do it in their home state?

In addition, game fixing would be easier in a world where fewer people track or are even aware of things like point spreads and over/under bets. 4: It will damage the sports betting business in Las Vegas

There is simply no way the leagues could ask for a percentage piece of gambling revenue, as this would result in a huge conflict of interest. This is not how most bookies work. In fact, there’s an argument that exposing more people to sports gambling in their native states will make the general concept of sports gambling more approachable, ultimately leading to a larger overall percentage of sports fans-turned-gamblers.

Myth No. This is the type of financial recklessness associated with problem gambling.

Furthermore, once sports betting becomes legal the negative stigma behind it will eventually disappear, which will make it a bit easier for problem gamblers to ask for help. There are going to be a lot of hands in the cookie jar. 2: It will create more “problem gamblers”

Those betting with bookies have predetermined settlement terms. operation for the U.K. First off, the government will only legalize if it is going to get significant revenue. In order to grow the pie large enough, these conveniences must be provided to gamblers. The experience of going to Vegas is becoming less and less about putting down a sports bet and more and more about the experience of everything else. Sen. U.S. This year, it is on pace to welcome a record 40 million visitors. Some are based on a time frame, while others are based on going over agreed-upon limits. (It’s common for bookies to offer rebates to their big customers.) This will be difficult for legal bookmakers to compete with.

“One of the things that makes sports betting so interesting is that it is probably by far the most widely participated in form of illegal gambling. In the latter case, I set up a credit arrangement with Illegal Book B and we agree that I will pay every time I go over $1,000. However, there are certainly some myths that I believe can be dispelled.

Myth No. Second, operators will need to run a cost-effective business, which may prove difficult if there are a lot of other hands to feed besides the government.

My answer is a solid maybe. If something shady were to occur in a game around a betting proposition, raised awareness by the public about gambling in general would help highlight any improprieties before, during and after the match.

Las Vegas sports book operators are already looking to expand to other states. Many bookies will allow me to get more credit and continue to gamble. This mirrors a similar concern that some had 25 years ago when Indian and commercial casinos began sprouting up all over the U.S.

And I have heard some mention licensing fees for data, but haven’t we already covered that in lawsuits against both the NBA and Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM)? In both cases, statistics and data were ruled to be public, not a private asset for which the leagues could charge a license fee.

There are a lot of unanswered questions regarding legalization of sports gambling in the U.S., and it will be fascinating to watch how it unfolds in the next few years. 1: It will result in large revenue for the leagues

The topic of federal legalization of sports betting has been brought up before, but it has gained steam since Adam Silver’s November New York Times op-ed and after Silver’s cover story in ESPN The Magazine’s Gambling Issue. Since sports gambling is currently something that happens in the shadows, problem gamblers are likely to hide in that shadow until it is too late.

At any rate, I really don’t see legalized sports betting in other states having a big impact on the sports betting business in Vegas.

When I think about the best way to legalize sports gambling from a logistical standpoint, I get a headache. But let’s say I have a bad losing streak and end up down more than $1,000. In the past two decades, although total revenue has risen, percentage of revenue from gambling has decreased from close to 60 percent to last year’s 38 percent. If it’s legalized, there will be huge changes, but some assumptions are simply off.

Those who believe this simply don’t understand how sports betting with a bookie works. Legalized sports betting would elevate these now somewhat esoteric notions into the mainstream conversation about sports. When I lose this money, it’s gone, and I can’t bet until I put more money on deposit. John McCain (R-Ariz.) also recently said that Congress needs to hold hearings to discuss legalizing sports betting.

The real value for them will be potential marketing dollars and increased fan engagement, not licensing fees for data or direct revenue from wagering.

The National Council on Problem Gamblers has found that problem gamblers are most often involved in illegal gambling, so moving toward a model where more gamblers are doing it legally can only help.

Silver echoed this sentiment when discussing his personal revelation in an exclusive interview with ESPN. Those who believe that legalized sports betting will lead to more risk of game fixing simply don’t understand why games are fixed. Maybe more so.

Mr. Illegal gambling is one of the factors that’s associated with gambling addiction,” Keith S. In addition, asking for a percentage based on the overall handle (total amount wagered) will cut into the margin of the sports books too significantly.

In that time span, we all know that Vegas has flourished.

This is the easiest myth to dispel. There are no credit checks or margin calls until it is time for me to pay. Whyte, executive director of the NCPG, told my ESPN colleague David Purdum.

The thought process here is that with legalized sports betting available locally, there will be less interest in making the trek to Sin City to wager on sports

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“I’m not pro sports gambling. I’m just a realist.”

The title of the exercise? “As Close as You Ever Want to Get to a Federally Prosecuted Sports Betting Trial.” In it, Assistant U.S. The move made sense to many in New Jersey, where ailing gaming and racing industries were causing financial strain. “And while I wouldn’t categorize that as sports betting, on the continuum of no betting at all and legalized betting, it’s certainly on the spectrum.”

His time overseas coincided with the Donaghy scandal and the revelation, as Silver puts it, “of how important it is to have a way of monitoring irregular activity in our games.” He adds, “None of the systems we had in place had captured any betting by Donaghy.”

Fans weren’t the only ones talking about it. “We’re still in the monitoring stage,” he says. While the NBA is still fighting in the courts to keep New Jersey from setting up its own sports-betting operation, three other states (New York, Indiana and South Carolina) have introduced similar bills this year, and a Minnesota state representative, Phyllis Kahn, has told ESPN that she’ll be introducing a sports-betting proposal early in this legislative session.

I have talked to the other commissioners about it. In September 2014, citing a loophole in the Department of Justice’s language about violations to PASPA, Christie issued a directive to legalize. commissioner to publicly support legalized sports gambling. “I felt the need to explain why I had made other statements acknowledging that I thought sports betting should be legalized,” Silver says. “I recognize that it can be very damaging to a person or a person’s family, just like other substances of potential abuse taken to extremes. “We did everything possible to encourage it while publicly condemning gambling. In those meetings, sources with direct knowledge say, contingency plans were formed in preparation for the day sports betting is legal outside of Nevada.

Stern began thinking along the same lines.

Silver says he hasn’t set a timetable for the day when we can legally bet on a Cavaliers-Heat game. It could have continued to treat sports betting as the enemy that for as long as anyone could remember had threatened the very fabric of the game. . “Then we began getting approached by sports-betting companies outside of the United States, where it’s legal, to do business with them. You don’t have to be a cynic to think that the leagues and their owners want a piece of that very big betting pie.

With the proliferation of casinos and state lotteries, the instant gratification of the Internet and the boom in daily fantasy sports, betting was becoming part of mainstream America. Specifically, New Jersey Gov. That’s when Silver says he began to realize the need for a response. “As someone who attends an enormous number of games, I’m often hearing fans talking about it,” Silver says. In 516 words, he diagnosed the reality of sports betting in the U.S.: Federal and state laws are not stopping anyone from betting. “We have always known betting, fantasy leagues and daily [fantasy] sports have driven interest and viewership,” wrote the Mavericks’ owner in a recent email exchange with The Magazine. She was represented by Ifrah, while David Deitch, a former Justice Department attorney, represented the government. 13, 2014, editorial in The New York Times, penned by new commissioner Adam Silver: I believe that sports betting should be brought out of the underground and into the sunlight where it can be appropriately monitored and regulated. (One study by Nevada gaming company Club Cal Neva projected a possible windfall of $50 million for Atlantic City casinos if betting was legalized.) But the leagues — the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB — and the NCAA sued, claiming that the state was in violation of PASPA and that the perception of the integrity of the games would be damaged if New Jersey began taking legal bets.

THEN CAME SILVER’S op-ed. And publicly, it did. The case is headed to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals this spring.

Cuban has suggested that one way of monetizing that interest is to charge sportsbooks and casinos licensing fees to use the league’s data. In England, bets can be placed on a smartphone, at a stadium kiosk or even using a TV remote control. “My greatest concern,” he says, “is that there will be, in essence, a hodgepodge of regulations controlling sports betting that will vary from state to state, jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and will make it increasingly difficult to monitor betting on our very own sport.”

Privately, though, the league was watching — closely — as the Vegas market and legal daily fantasy sites were growing exponentially. “As we began to stage exhibition games in Europe and China and jurisdictions where sports betting was legal, it caused me to focus more on this than I had historically,” Silver says. “But I view myself more as pro transparency. He’s relaxed, though not unguarded. It studied and researched and planned behind closed doors before it made its move. 16 Gambling Issue. … “Yet at the same time, we were opposing the New Jersey legislation in multiple court actions. Included in the forum, which wasn’t open to the public, were talks with law enforcement officials, gaming regulators, addiction specialists and even a former student-athlete caught up in sports gambling. gaming laws, including PASPA and the Wire Act, which prohibits any betting activity that includes wire transmissions. The “defendant,” “Ginger McKenna,” was accused of facilitating illegal sports bets. Regardless of public positioning, all the leagues are actively planning for a new gambling reality. Or on Silver, who gained extensive knowledge of foreign revenue models during his time overseas. One week later, the NBA was due back in court as part of its ongoing fight to prevent New Jersey from making sports betting legal. Chris Christie, who in 2012 began pushing to legalize sports betting in his state by challenging the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) of 1992, the federal ban on state-sponsored sports betting. And someone who’s a realist in the business. And when it did, it was not subtle.

This story appears in ESPN The Magazine’s Feb. On the one side are those who tell you that’s the way it’s always been done, and on the other are those who urge you to change and adapt.

Studying models is one thing. There also have been other, more private confabs involving high-ranking advisers to the leagues. But the state didn’t give up. And in New Zealand, sportsbook giant TAB paid more than $5 million last year in commissions to the leagues it takes wagers on. In 2013, $1.05 billion was wagered legally on basketball, combining the professional and college levels. I needed a forum to make it clear.”

So it is, then, that for now, at least, Silver seems comfortable standing alone as the only acting U.S. But the timing of the op-ed allowed him to address another seeming hypocrisy: Just one day prior to its publication, the league announced a deal with a successful daily fantasy operator called FanDuel, which boasted some $621 million in entry fees last year alone. “In light of these domestic and global trends,” he wrote, “the laws on sports betting should be changed. The best way for the league to monitor our integrity is for that betting action to move toward legal betting organizations, where it can be tracked. A 2007 letter signed by all general counsels of the major sports leagues and the NCAA, including NBA vice president Rick Buchanan, stated, “The harms caused by government endorsement of sports betting far exceed the alleged benefits.”

The opportunity for additional streams of capital from sports betting can’t be lost on U.S. Gary Bettman, the longtime commissioner of the NHL, told CNN in November after Silver’s op-ed was published: “I think there needs to be some attention paid to what sports is going to represent to young people. In 2009, the then-commissioner told Sports Illustrated, when asked if legal sports betting would be in the NBA’s best interest, “It has been a matter of league policy to answer that question no. As we became more of a global company, I began to think about what our policy should be here.”

The timing of the column, of course, was calculated. In that dark moment, the NBA could very well have hunkered down and waited for the dawn. Subscribe today!

When asked about the support he’s getting from other leagues, Silver says, “I have talked to the commissioners in the other leagues about it, and I leave it to them to make any public statements they want to make on it. “The league and many of our teams are actively engaged in the so-called daily fantasy business,” Silver says. All of them have assigned people to study the issue intensively.

” — NBA commissioner Adam Silver

The Donaghy revelation became the ugliest gambling scandal to hit an American professional sport since at least Pete Rose’s banishment from baseball in 1989 and perhaps since the Black Sox threw the 1919 World Series. MLB declined to comment for this story, and the NFL refused to even reiterate its anti-legalization stance. Billions of dollars are being illegally wagered on sports, almost all online. The NBA deal also included an equity stake in the company. I will say that certainly all of them … District Judge Michael Shipp ruled in favor of the leagues. The illegal market across sports? Try 132 times that — an estimated $138.9 billion, according to the American Gaming Association. “One of my concerns is that I will be portrayed as pro sports betting,” he says. have assigned people in their organizations to study the issue intensively.”

PERHAPS THE BEST Silver can hope for from other commissioners is a new view of sports betting as a possible “frenemy.” It is tricky, after all, for the leagues to embrace something they’ve long denounced for its impact on the “integrity of the game.” It would also be naive to think that this is all about the sanctity of the results. Attorney Harris Fischman examined major U.S.

THE NBA’S DARKEST hour can actually be marked by a single moment, concentrated down to the uttering of a sentence.  “I can tell you that this is the most serious situation and worst situation that I have ever experienced either as a fan of the NBA, a lawyer for the NBA or a commissioner of the NBA.” That was the lament of then-commissioner David Stern during a July 24, 2007, news conference announcing that referee Tim Donaghy was under federal investigation for betting on games. So were politicians. team owners. He spent time overseas growing the NBA’s brand, giving him a vantage point to see how legalized gambling worked in other countries. Deitch prevailed.

Leave it to Mark Cuban to be frank about that aspect of the NBA’s support for legalization. Just 88 days into his tenure as NBA commissioner, on April 29, 2014, Silver banned Clippers owner Donald Sterling in a four-minute proclamation on national TV, his willingness to stand alone in full view.

In September, Silver told an audience at a Bloomberg sports business conference that expanded legalized sports betting in the U.S. “I am very sensitive to people thinking that I’m not understanding of the downsides,” he says. In September 2012, the NFL convened a forum in collaboration with other pro leagues, the International Olympic Committee and the NCAA to discuss best practices, law enforcement resources and the gambling industry. It saw how all that interest, as well as action from illegal offshore betting sites, fueled NBA fandom, and it realized it needed to have a seat at the table — the better to monitor and monetize those burgeoning passions. That’s the pragmatic approach.”

But multiple sources with direct knowledge of meetings between the leagues believe the NHL is much more open to legalization than Bettman’s comments indicate. But you can bet all interested parties — the other leagues, the states, the bookmakers, the bettors — are following the developments as closely as they would a point spread.

And so after taking over for Stern last February, Silver wasted little time implementing his approach. But Adam Silver has proved otherwise. was “inevitable” because cash-strapped states need the revenue.

SPORTS IS AN ongoing contest between two forces: tradition and innovation. That’s yet another reason I think it needs to be closely monitored.”

The bald 52-year-old man in glasses and a conservative dark suit doesn’t look like an agent of change — especially with the 1970s soul music playing in the background on the set at a recent photo shoot for The Mag. In March, two NBA attorneys attended a mock sports-betting trial put on by gaming attorney Jeff Ifrah at iGaming North America at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas. Actually establishing a legal framework is another. Once again, the leagues sued and won. But I think that league policy was formulated at a time when gambling was far less widespread — even legally.”

In November 2011, New Jersey voters had overwhelmingly approved a referendum to legalize Las Vegas-style sports betting at racetracks and casinos across the state. Does it become a vehicle for betting, which may in effect change the atmosphere in the arenas?”

Through it all, Silver has remained steadfast that legal sports gambling should be addressed first on the federal, not state, level. “Even if they’re not betting, they’re highly aware of the betting line and over/unders.”

In the meantime, Silver is willing to take the lead on an issue that some liken to the legalization of marijuana — socially acceptable but mostly illegal. And the NHL and MLB are both currently partnered with daily fantasy sports operator DraftKings.

The NBA’s pivot point on legalized gambling appeared in a Nov. “We have studied the New Zealand model and other models in other jurisdictions,” he says.

The evolution of Silver as gambling realist in many ways began in 2006, after he took over the league’s international operations as deputy commissioner. Congress should adopt a federal framework that allows states to authorize betting on professional sports, subject to strict regulatory requirements and technological safeguards.”

U.S.

A united front among all the leagues would certainly help Silver’s cause for a federal solution. In some areas of Australia, for example, sportsbooks pay fees to leagues based on the gross revenue made off the wagering of the games. I’m glad Adam is putting the hypocrisy behind us and putting it all up front.”

Nine months later, on a cold January afternoon on the 19th floor of league headquarters in Midtown Manhattan, with Hot Chocolate’s “You Sexy Thing” playing, Silver is loose and joking, all the while being prepped for his cover shoot. The other leagues have — at least publicly — not wavered from their anti-legalization stance after the op-ed. But that’s not to say he and the NBA are the only ones re-examining their approach