The United States of America introduced a new form of entertainment for its people, or rather it began introducing a new form of entertainment, with the order of the Supreme Court, which struck down a federal law banning commercial sports betting. It is 2023 now, and the industry is seeing considerable growth in revenue and the number of participants.
According to a report published by the American Gaming Association, approximately 50.4 million people in America bet on the Super Bowl between the Chiefs and the Eagles. The result is that it led to a whopping wagering figure of $16 billion in the last edition of the Super Bowl. This is an increase from $7.6 billion in 2022.
That is reportedly just the surface, as the revenue aspect is yet to be discussed. Here’s how the figures for sports betting in the US look so far:
- Amount legally wagered = $73 billion
- Revenue for casinos = $5.7 billion
- Tax revenue for the federal government = $1.3 billion
A total of 33 states have legalized sports betting through the end of 2022, and the number is only expected to increase this year, with three operators gearing up to enter the legal market in 2023.
It shows how the industry is doing and how it might be able to make money. However, that is just one side of the coin that, when flipped, reveals the dark side of people suffering from problem gambling.
The percentages seem to be lower, but Yale Medicine presents a strong case against that. It was recently shared that 1% of the adult population and 2%–7% of the younger population suffer from problem gambling. This does little justice since it is not easy to recognize when the actions become problematic.
Timothy Fong, a professor at UCLA, has said that it is nothing different from the addiction to smoking or alcohol because it just gets people feeling good about themselves.
The perception that bettors know more about the sport than anyone else increases the risks. This leads to the illusion of control, and people end up placing higher or more difficult bets. This extends to people betting on parlays, where multiple outcomes must align for the winner. Needless to say, this is riskier, and people do lose a lot of money even if a single outcome goes against their bet.
Some of the best USA sports betting sites encourage users to place bets based on a single outcome. For instance, Steve Maltepes stays away from parlays. He instead chooses to wager thousands of dollars on a single outcome. His wins are just above the 50% margin, but he makes decent profits. Not precisely a site; however, Steve fits as the perfect example of how bets must be placed.
An additional note is a suggestion that wagering huge amounts is not necessary if sports betting is just for fun. Set a budget and stick to it to avoid problem gambling behavior.