Americans were heartbroken when the UIGEA made it impossible for them to play legally at local and international bookmakers. Their fascination with sports betting did not end though and many found alternative ways of playing their favorite games. For many years, they were compelled to bet at offshore bookies while taking all the risks that inevitably derived from such a decision. Things are finally changing for the better, as many US states are legalizing sports betting within their borders.
The East Coast is the Champion of Legalization
The movement to legalize sports betting sites online started on the East Coast, with states such as Delaware and New Jersey leading the charge. Betting on sports was already legal in Nevada, but the state pushed forward with the legalization of other forms of gambling. Today, US residents can bet on NBA, NHL, NFL and MLB teams in select states, but they are likely to get more options in the foreseeable future. That’s because the shining example of the Eastern states has inspired others to pass similar laws.
Online betting is regarded by increasingly more lawmakers as an important source of revenue for state coffers. The prospect of losing money to offshore operators who are not licensed in the US and paying no taxes is immensely frustrating for legislators. This has compelled them to accelerate reforms and that’s why there are so many new states discussing and voting on gambling bills. Sports betting is at the top of the list, followed at a short distance by casino and poker games, as all follow a positive trend.
International bookmakers are anxiously waiting on the opportunity to enter the US market, which is widely regarded as the most profitable in the world. Assuming lawmakers find a way to pass the laws needed for sports books to legally provide US players with sports betting options, they will surely arrive. There is even a race among liberal bookmakers who understand the upsides of welcoming honest companies willing to invest, so they are scrambling to pass the necessary sets of laws.
Opposition is Weakening Nationwide
There are still many groups that fiercely oppose the prospect of legalizing sports betting and other forms of gambling in the US. Some are driven by their own principles, while others have vested interests in keeping online gambling operators away. The good news is that support for such groups is dwindling and their impact is limited. Even the major land-based casinos of Las Vegas and Atlantic City are less vocal against legalized sports betting, because they have a clear avenue to profit.
Prospective punters can now visit a brick-and-mortar casino and fund their online account with money to gamble on the Internet. This keeps traditional bookmakers in the loop and they even make a profit, while providing players with a safe way of betting on sports. For all the obstacles and shortcomings, things are finally set in motion and for the first time in many years, the future of sports betting in the US looks great.