After the victory of New Jersey in the Supreme Court in 2018, any state in the U.S. could choose to legalize sports betting. In 2018, a few states like Nevada, Delaware, and Mississippi legalized sports betting and by 2020, it had become extremely popular. The law permits wagering in person, online, or on a mobile device. Bettors can bet on all pro sports, international sporting events, and college games.
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In 2017, Gov. Tom Wolf signed a new sports betting bill, and it became effective after the 2018 Supreme Court ruling struck down the federal ban against single-game betting outside of Nevada. Bettors have to be at least 21 years of age. There is no requirement to be a permanent resident of Pennsylvania, but bettors must be within state lines. Parx Casino, the biggest in Pennsylvania in terms of revenue, has a very popular PA sports betting app.
After a long court battle, Gov. Phil Murphy signed New Jersey sports betting into law in June 2018 and the first online sportsbooks went live in August. New Jersey soon became a very robust market with legal sportsbooks at casinos and racetracks as well as online via mobile apps throughout the state. According to reporters writing sports reports, December 2020 was a really big month for New Jersey with the sports betting handle amounting to over $6 billion. There are currently close to 20 online sports betting apps in the state.
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Nevada led the way when it made sports betting legal in 1949. It was exempt from the Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) put in place in 1992 which outlawed sports betting across the U.S. It currently has more licensed physical operators than any of the other states. With Las Vegas under its helm, one would think it would be ranked number one in the U.S., but it has increased the competition for its piece of the gambling pie and New Jersey ousted it from the top spot in 2020.
Illinois burst onto the sports betting scene in 2020 and was soon overtaking betting in various states that had legalized sports betting in 2018. This could be due to the fact that it is home to the Chicago White Sox (MLB), Chicago Fire (Soccer) and the Chicago Bulls (NBA). However, a recent in-person registration requirement could set back the growth of sports betting in Illinois.
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