Half of Americans now live in states ready to offer sports gambling
40 states are expected to offer sports wagers by 2024
Sports gambling fans will be forever in New Jersey’s debt. It’s only because the state’s legislators, led by then-Governor Chris Christie, were able to convince the Supreme Court that federal lawmakers were out of line when they signed off on PASPA that sports gambling is starting to be legalized. Now, the industry that reportedly saw $150 billion making its way to illegal offshore sites each year is starting to flourish and more states are jumping on board.
Research shows that up to 35 states could offer sports gambling by the end of this year, according to Gambling Compliance. This means that about 50% of all Americans will be living in legal sports gambling states. By the year 2024, up to 40 states could legalize sports gambling.
In 2017, the legal sports gambling industry in the US, with only a severely limited amount of participants, earned $261.3 million. Once states like Delaware, New Mexico, New Jersey, Rhode Island, West Virginia and Pennsylvania had joined in by the end of last year, that figure had climbed to $430.2 million – only six months after the Supreme Court shot down PASPA.
Since the beginning of 2019, sportsbooks have collected $4.4 billion in handle and generated almost $259 million in revenue. The total handle since the demise of PASPA is $8 billion, of which sportsbooks have earned over $500 million. Another $60 million has gone to the states and cities where legal sports gambling has been launched.
There’s still a long way to go and many legal states have not yet met their revenue expectations. However, it’s difficult to find any industry that didn’t experience growing pains and there’s no reason to expect legal sports gambling to be any different. Just like it took email almost 20 years to become standard after it was introduced, sports gambling needs a ramp-up period, as well.