NBA: how the NBA is prepared to take advantage of legalized sports bets –

NBA: how the NBA is prepared to take advantage of legalized sports bets


THERE'S 1:09 LEFT in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals, and the Cleveland Cavaliers have called for a timeout. It is tied. Will LeBron James take the picture? Or Kyrie Irving? How about J.R. Smith? What are the odds?

What if someone in Detroit could have made a legal bet during the TV standby time? Or Denver? Or maybe someone sitting in the fifth row at Oracle Arena with his smartphone?

This could be heading towards reality as the Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments in Washington in a seminal case in sports history. Christie v. NCAA could usher in widely legalized sports bets outside of Nevada. First in New Jersey, then probably in more states in the next few years and, potentially, throughout the country.

Stakeholders have been preparing for this for years. One company, William Hill, spent seven figures to build a sports betting house on a racetrack in New Jersey, ready to open its doors within days of a favorable ruling. Lawmakers have introduced legislation at the state and federal level pending the kind of pressure the Supreme Court may be about to give. Media companies have launched companies ready to serve a new market. And the NBA and several of its owners have positioned themselves to be in front of the line to extract money from new sources of income.

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It is also the opportunity for a politician who was once promising and who has seen his star disappear, the governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, have his name in one piece of history that could launch an industry that changes the game.

"In the end, we're right about this," Christie said in an interview last week. "What we really believe is that the leagues have had a tremendous influence in trying to make sure this never happens."

All major sports leagues and the NCAA have been involved since 2011, when New Jersey voters approved a referendum for the first time. to allow sports betting. The leagues have collectively sued New Jersey twice to stop it, once in 2012 and again in 2014. After New Jersey lost several times in lower courts, the Supreme Court surprised legislators by deciding to hear the case last summer, since he insinuated that he could be willing to revoke the previous decision.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has said that NFL ownership is still against the expansion of sports betting, even though the Raiders are moving to Las Vegas. Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred hovered over the issue last summer, saying that if the laws changed, then baseball should be part of the creation of safeguards. [19659000] "[All the leagues] will come to the conclusion that this is part of the future." Do we live in a fantasy world? You have 190 billion dollars last year betting illegally in the US UU in the main sports leagues and the NCAA, "said Christie." I think it's about money, and in the end, they want a part of the action. And if they wanted to, they should have negotiated with me a long time ago. "

The NBA is looking to be a leader in space, enter into strategic partnerships, open the door to major casino sponsorships and see several owners invest directly in the sports betting industry.

"When it comes to sports betting, the NBA is Secretary at the Belmont compared to the other leagues," said right-wing gaming expert Daniel Wallach, comparing the NBA's initial lead with the NBA. legendary victory of 31 bodies in 1973. " The NFL is still at the starting gate. The NBA is preparing for the generalized bets legalized in its games and is ahead of the other leagues in positioning itself to get a share of the potential stock. "

MUCH AS THE The NFL, the NBA and former commissioner David Stern opposed the sport game for decades.In December 2012, when sports leagues struggled in their first lawsuit to stop sports betting in New Jersey, Stern made the league position clear in a deposition. [19659000] "[There’s] a long list of reasons why we believe it is better that there will be no bets on our games if we can avoid it, "Stern said in 2012." The only thing I'm sure of is that New Jersey has no idea what it is doing and does not care because the only thing that interests you is making a dollar or two, and they do not care what our potential loss is. "

Last year, Stern said:" Do I really have to explain to you why I do not want Chris Christie to regulate our games? "[19659019]" When it comes to sports betting, the NBA is Secretary in Belmont compared to the other leagues. "

Gaming Law Expert Daniel Wallach

Christie, who has been pressured by some to leave this case, always Stern's comments and the rest of the pro sports league warnings pro.

"If I was worried about every slight I've had in the last eight years, I could not get up," Christie said. whatever you want to say In the end, we're right, and he's wrong. "

In fact, the NBA has forcefully and aggressively led commissioner Adam Silver In the fall of 2014, Silver wrote an op-ed in the New York Times in which he asked for the legalization of sports betting at the federal level. "The laws on sports betting should be changed," Silver wrote. "I think that sports betting should be taken out of hiding in the sunlight."

The impressive Silver's proclamation coincided with the NBA's investment in FanDuel, a fantasy sports daily website that was considered a gambling game by the attorneys general of many states 19659002] Still, the NBA is still a plaintiff against New Jersey Because legalization would come without the regulations that the NBA wants to implement, Silver prefers to change federal laws and create a unified commission that establishes rules and supervises betting books. instead of a state-by-state approach. This is how sports betting is governed in countries where it is legal, such as Australia, where limits are set on certain types of bets to reduce the chances of match fixing.

"It is not, for me, a question of whether I am a gambler or an adventurer in sports betting, now we know that it continues largely underground," Silver said in ESPN's Golic and Wingo last week. "If you have 50 states that compete with each other, it could be a race down in terms of how to do the best job of protecting consumers and the integrity of our league."

In addition to regulations, Silver and the other leagues hope to eventually lobby Congress to get a bet on each league. Currently, there is a federal 0.25 percent tax on sports betting bets in Nevada. Last year, when the state had a record $ 4.5 billion in sports betting, the takeover of the government was over $ 110 million. On a national scale, such a taste for sports leagues would be meaningful money.

"That's why the NBA needs to win this case against New Jersey, because otherwise the toothpaste could be out of the tube and you could end up with a mosaic of states that do their thing," said Wallach, the lawyer of games. "Given how fractured the current political landscape is, it could take years to find a solution in Congress."

Anyway, Silver has put the NBA in the field of gaming and his predecessor has joined him. Last year, Stern made clear his own change of mind when he was a featured guest at the annual Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas. "The belief that gambling will lead to bad things is an old-fashioned notion," Stern said at the event.

While the lawsuit that tried to block Christie struggled through the legal process, the NBA moved forward with several measures that backed Silver positioned the league to benefit from the changes in the laws. At the heart of the NBA's strategic preparation is an badociation that began this fall with Sportradar, a sports data company based in Europe. Sportradar has a reputation for supervising and investigating match fixing around the world. But its main function is to sell services to the international gaming industry.

This year, Sportradar took over the distribution of real-time data from the NBA. Real-time data allows bookmakers to reliably establish probabilities and take action for the lucrative live betting market as games are played. If the information is delayed or fails, it could affect the integrity of the bets.

The NBA made this data badociation, which according to Forbes is worth $ 250 million for the league in the next six years, with this in mind. But it was only for overseas betting markets. If sports gambling is legalized in the US UU. Could create a new revenue source for real-time data that the NBA could sell.

"You can place a bet after each game detention in offshore books now," said Haralabos. Voulgaris, a high risk gambler whose base is outside the US UU "All the big money in the NBA is betting on the high seas."

But that could change. Bets in the game may also be suitable for NFL, NHL and MLB games. Three NBA owners: Michael Jordan of Charlotte, Ted Leonsis of Washington and Mark Cuban of Dallas, have recently invested in Sportradar, in part because they see the possibility of explosive growth in the United States.

Investment in casinos is another way in which NBA differs from its peers. The NFL and Major League Baseball do not allow owners to own casinos as well. Not so in the NBA, where the new owner of the Rockets, Tilman Fertitta, owns the Golden Nugget in Las Vegas, and the owner of the Cavs, Dan Gilbert, owns casinos in several states. Micky Arison of Miami and Joshua Harris of Philadelphia manage companies with significant casino ownership.

"Why do we live in a fantasy world? You have wagered $ 190 billion last year illegally in the US In the major sports leagues and the NCAA." [19659020] Governor of New Jersey Chris Christie

There are also other maneuvers underway. The NBA became the first major sports league in the United States to present sponsors of shirts this season. Those are potentially ideal to be sold to sportsbooks with betting options in the game that they want to attract directly to your market: fans with smartphones watching the game live.

All current jersey sponsorships are three-year offers. By the time they show up again, the sports betting industry could prosper and buy advertising space.

In England, where sports betting is legal, the Premier League has become a model of how to monetize casino advertising. Last season, half of their teams had major casinos badociations, many of them in the form of t-shirt sponsorships, in deals worth tens of millions of pounds. Silver, who is an avid fan of the Premier League, could see the same kind of future for the NBA, both in jersey ads and on-court announcements. The league has expanded the standard advertising in courts and baskets in recent years, with FanDuel and its competitor DraftKings already active in that space with numerous teams.

SPORTS BETTING WAS banned by the federal government in 1992 with the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). Four states were protected, but only Nevada was allowed to have generalized sports bets. Coincidentally, PASPA was also headed by a politician from New Jersey, the former barbarian of the New York Knicks, Bill Bradley, a US senator. UU At that time, Stern of the NBA strongly supported the bill.

Citing PASPA, the District Court of New Jersey annulled the law that Christie signed three years ago. It was confirmed by the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia last year by a 2-1 vote, most again citing PASPA.

But last summer, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the final appeal of New Jersey. The problem before the court is not about the betting policy. Instead, it is a test of the 10th Amendment, which guarantees states the right to enact laws that are not delegated by the Constitution.

In 2016, the Supreme Court annulled 79 percent of the cases it chose to hear, including both cases of the 3rd Circuit. So even the fact that the case was settled by the court marked a change in the fortunes of New Jersey.

The court is expected to fail in late spring or early summer. The scope of the decision could determine if other states could immediately follow New Jersey's leadership. Mississippi and Connecticut are two that have taken legislative measures to do so.

The oral argument faces two heavyweight lawyers against each other. The leagues hired Paul Clement, who has discussed more than 80 cases before the Supreme Court and successfully represented the NFL against Tom Brady. New Jersey is headed by Ted Olson, who won the Bush v. Case. Gore in the Supreme Court to resolve the 2000 presidential election.

"It's like Ali vs. Frazier," Wallach said. "People will line up the night before to see it."

William Hill, the British bookmaker who also operates in Nevada, is so convinced that New Jersey will eventually win that he spent $ 1 million on a sports betting facility in Monmouth Park, a short distance from New York City . It is inactive like a restaurant at the moment, but it could be in a position to connect quickly. If the court rules in favor of New Jersey, fans could place bets on the NBA playoffs next spring.

Last month, MGM International announced that it was building a $ 7 million sports betting facility at the Borgata Casino in Atlantic City before a potential favorable ruling.

"I have it in a 4 to 1 favorite, the court revokes PASPA," said Jimmy Vaccaro, director of sports marketing at South Point Casino in Las Vegas and has been a bookmaker for the past 40 years. "There is a decent chance that we have more sports bets for the 2018 football season."

All these companies come with the belief that sports betting will eventually be supported by the White House. President Donald Trump owns a casino in New Jersey, but his administration is against New Jersey in the next case. Trump's attorney general, Noel Francisco, received 10 minutes of time to orally present the government's position in front of the Supreme Court.

Trump has said he wants to speak with the sports league commissioners before endorsing a change to the law.

"We would not do it lightly, I can tell you," Trump said earlier this year. "It will be studied with great care, but I would like to receive many contributions from many different people."

One such person could be Christie, who made a famous campaign with Trump last year. The governor said he has not spoken to the president on the matter, but if this case goes as he believes, he will not need Trump's help to make a bet next fall.

"I would love to go to Monmouth Park and be able to bet early in the Dallas Cowboys," said Christie, friend of Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. "If the betting line was favorable"

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