Three weeks ago, the Supreme Court announced that states could legalize sports betting and the gambling industry is still feeling it. In addition, industry experts believe it will take years before we fully understand the repercussion of legalized sports betting. However, one overlooked winner of legalized sports betting are the American Sports Leagues. This is because Sports Leagues will profit from Sports Betting despite their protests.
Even without getting 1% of all sports betting revenue, American Sports Leagues are amongst the winners of legalized Sports Betting. Whether they want to admit it or not; sports betting will bring a big boost to their overall revenues.
Not counting additional sponsorship and licensing deals, sports betting will increase viewership of these sporting events. For leagues like the NFL, MLB and the NBA, larger viewership means bigger profits for them and the team owners.
As more states legalize sports betting, the profit for U.S. sports leagues will increase
Sportsbook Pay Per Head experts believe that 14 states will legalize sports betting within two years. In addition, they estimate that within the next five years, 18 more states will legalize sports gambling. This means that in less than five years, most states will have legalized sports betting.
Furthermore, according to a forecast by Evercore ISI, “Sports betting could drive $7bn incremental US ad spend in 2019”. Evercore ISI analyst, According Anthony DiClemente estimates that half of that money would go towards digital advertising.
As legal sports betting spread across the United States, the sports viewership will also increase. According to several studies, sports bettors are more likely to watch sporting event if they have money on the game. Furthermore, they are more likely to watch the entire game even if it is a blowout.
Thus, TV viewership will increase leading to more expensive ad revenue for both the sports leagues and the media. In addition we will start to see more direct team sponsorship like in Europe and Asia. So do not be surprise if in the next few years we see a sportsbook logo on a player’s jersey.
Thus, even without getting a 1% cut of the sports betting revenue, sports leagues will benefit from legalized sports gambling.