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Sports betting legalized, as NBA sought; now it's up to the states; Nets looking forward

Sports betting is coming, thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court decision, and it will have to affect sports fandom in New York City, as well as the atmosphere around venues like the Barclays Center, which, after all, already has the Resorts World Casino NYC Plaza.

It is legalizing what is now an underground economy, and, as in London, there may be numerous legal betting outlets, with the ability to bet on various aspects of the game (quick: how many assists will LeBron get?) and gambling companies will be advertisers and sponsors.

Gambling and the point spread will be part of game analysts' discourse. And there will be the collateral damage of problem bettors and, perhaps, some shady behavior (though there will be new safeguards).

Nets are poised to cash in on new sports-betting freedoms, the New York Post's Brian Lewis reported yesterday, noting that the recent high valuation for the Nets reportedly agreed to by Joe Tsai, who just bought 49% and will buy the rest, is bolstered by gambling. Lewis wrote:
“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court will have a tremendous impact on fan engagement and creates value for the Nets and our venues,” Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment CEO Brett Yormark said. “We are currently exploring sports betting opportunities, and once we fully understand the legislative direction, we can better determine how to activate in the space.”
Experts in the industry think the legalization of sports betting will prove a boon for anyone selling or marketing sponsorships and sports media. That’s something BSE is intent on doing, and is convinced Tsai will help immensely.
Asia is the world's biggest gambling market.

The decision

Here's the New York Times article, Supreme Court Ruling Favors Sports Betting:
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court struck down a 1992 federal law on Monday that effectively banned commercial sports betting in most states, opening the door to legalizing the estimated $150 billion in illegal wagers on professional and amateur sports that Americans make every year.
The decision seems certain to result in profound changes to the nation’s relationship with sports wagering. Bettors will no longer be forced into the black market to use offshore wagering operations or illicit bookies. Placing bets will be done on mobile devices, fueled and endorsed by the lawmakers and sports officials who opposed it for so long. A trip to Las Vegas to wager on March Madness or the Super Bowl could soon seem quaint.
The decision is up to the states, and New Jersey, which had previously had voters pass a constitutional amendment to allow sports betting, seems poised to move forward. New York has legalized sports betting at some casinos and may pass a new law. The NBA and NFL would like national legislation.

The Los Angeles Times, in NBA has been preparing to embrace legalized sports betting for years, quoted the NBA:
"Today's decision by the Supreme Court opens the door for states to pass laws legalizing sports betting," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. "We remain in favor of a federal framework that would provide a uniform approach to sports gambling in states that choose to permit it, but we will remain active in ongoing discussions with state legislatures. Regardless of the particulars of any future sports betting law, the integrity of our game remains our highest priority."
What's up in New York?

Newsday wrote:
Enabling legislation to regulate the wagering was introduced in both the Senate and Assembly in March by members who chair the chambers’ gaming committees. And rather than being limited to four recently licensed casinos, betting at racinos, tracks, OTBs and on mobile devices would be allowed by the bills via “affiliate deals” with the casinos.
With the legislative session due to end in a few weeks and gambling legislation seen as a priority, legal wagers in time for the World Series and football season might not be long shots at all.
The New York Post, in How New York can benefit from legalized sports betting, noted that "One potential legalization hurdle involves the 'integrity fees' being sought by sports leagues in exchange for endorsing gambling on their match-ups."

Potential problems

The New York Daily News editorialized about problem gambling and warned legislators about getting greedy:
So legislators must resist the temptation to put parlors on every corner. Keep sports betting contained to those fully state-sanctioned casinos.
For now, keep the floodgates to online betting shut tight, and don't let other websites and apps hosted in other states work here.
And invest in robust public education to try to warn families and would-be suckers of the signs and risks of addiction.
Other issues raised in coverage include the impact on current illegal bookmakers and the likelihood that fans will retain loyalties to far-away teams.

The 2014 portent

It's been a long time coming. As the Times reported 11/13/14, In Sharp Pivot for N.B.A., Commissioner Backs Sports Betting, Adam Silver called for legalization, given that there was a thriving, unregulated underground business. Previously, the major leagues had uniformly opposed legalized gambling, as had the NCAA.

At that time, the NBA began partnering with the fantasy sports site FanDuel, which offers a form of legal betting. Silver wrote:
These requirements would include: mandatory monitoring and reporting of unusual betting-line movements; a licensing protocol to ensure betting operators are legitimate; minimum-age verification measures; geo-blocking technology to ensure betting is available only where it is legal; mechanisms to identify and exclude people with gambling problems; and education about responsible gaming.

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