Sports Betting Nevada
Did you know that sports betting has been legal in Nevada for about 70 years?
Nevada’s gambling industry is at its highest form when it comes to tax revenue generated. Of course, the fact the state of Nevada has had several legal gambling activities running plays a significant role in its high revenue returns. Sports betting seems to play a huge part in the state’s gambling industry success. However, the main reason for their success lies in the fact the state of Nevada permitted several betting and gambling legislation before the other states tried to catch up with them.
While most states are now trying to pass and implement legislation to legalize sports betting within their state lines, Nevada has been on it for years, which is why dazzling Las Vegas, the city with the largest number of casinos in the country is well known.
But, even with sports betting being legal in the state while it was illegal activity in other states, is online sports betting legal in Nevada?
Until May 2018 when the Supreme Court ruled to ban/ overturn PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act), sports betting was legal and in full force in Nevada. If you ever had to bet on the Super Bowl before the ruling by the Supreme court, you know that you would only bet legally by heading down to Las Vegas. However, since the federal ban on the illegality of sports betting, legislations are being passed in different states and you might never have to leave your state to place wagers on sports.
These are the reasons why Nevada is said to have grandfathered sports betting.
Before we look into the history and the legal framework of sports betting in the state, let’s first look at the state of online sports betting Nevada
Online Sports Betting in Nevada
From the first time sports betting was legalized, Nevada sportsbooks hit the ground running. Recently, they have succumbed to the digital age. Unfortunately, they are not doing as well as we’d expect them to.
Nevada sportsbooks have recently introduced sports betting apps. However, the state has not passed laws that legalize sports betting online, leave alone laws on the authorization, management, and the placement of online wagers on sports.
Having been on the sports betting scene for decades, this shouldn’t be expected. The reason for this is all the 137 sportsbooks registered and licensed in the state agree on keeping their operations in the land-based casinos in a bid to prevent the third party online gaming operators from getting a piece of the pie. The Nevada Gaming Control Board, however, seeks to change the situation by coming up with systems that will ensure the regulation of online sports betting in Nevada.
So, if you wanted to place a wager on a sport within Las Vegas from the comfort of your home, you have to wait a little longer for legalization. Currently, the state deems illegal online sports betting. For now, you have to visit any of the 137 sportsbooks to wager on a sport.
The only forms of events that you can bet on online are pari-mutuel horse racing and greyhound racing events. You could also try online fantasy sports.
Nevada Sports Betting Apps
The sports betting scene in Nevada is making significant strides, and over the past few years, the sportsbooks have adopted technologies which have brought them closer to their sports betting fans.
While reluctant to legalize online sports betting, sports wagering apps appear to be the heart of Nevada’s sports betting scene. They intend to make their bettors smarter bettors while giving the bettors quicker access to the best odds or point spreads.
While the wagering apps run on a common software platform, the apps offer varying numbers of wagers, odds, and point spreads. Also, some of the apps only allow wagering on horse racing.
The apps are for the following sportsbooks:
- Atlantic Sports
- B-Connected Sports
- Caesars Entertainment
- CG Technology
- Golden Nugget
- MGM Resorts – PlayMGM
- NV Sports
- Station Casinos – STN Sports
- South Point
- Westgate – Superbook
- Treasure Island
- William Hill
The sports betting service providers for these sportsbooks include Miomni, William Hill, CG Technology, and IGT.
The Rise of Sports Betting
In the past five years, sportsbooks have been upgrading and renovating their systems – at least 10 sportsbooks upgraded in Las Vegas in 2016 alone. More renovations and upgrades were expected in 2018.
Types of Wagers
You can place wagers like the Point Spread, Moneyline, totals, propositions, and futures.
One of the standard rules for wagering on sports is that you must be within the state of Nevada to place your wager, and also, you bettors must be over 21 years. 21 years is the legal gambling age in Nevada.
History of Sports Betting Nevada
For about 70 years, sports betting has been offered by the state of Nevada legally. In March 1931, Nevada’s then-governor Gov. Fred Balzar signed into law Bill 98. This bill legalized wide and open gambling within the state, and for the first time in the United States’ history. This event is what set the beautiful city of Las Vegas on course into becoming a renowned sports betting haven we all know and love today.
Note, however, that even with the legalization of sports betting in 1931, the event remained largely illegal. It was one of the underground activities of the time. It wasn’t until 1949 that Nevada actually legalized both sports betting, as well as horse betting. Following the legalization of sports betting, the federal government – in 1951 – introduced a 10 percent tax on all the legal sportsbooks. This move forced most of the legitimate sportsbooks to close shop since they couldn’t be profitable with the high tax rates. Most of the sportsbooks who remained active run their operations illegally and underground while others looked for legal workarounds to stay afloat.
In 1974, the federal government did relax its tax rate on sports betting from 10 percent to 2 percent encouraging the emergence of more legal sportsbooks. The modern model with the modern sportsbooks run on today was developed in 1976 with the establishment of Stardust Sportsbook which boasted 6 big TV screens as well as luxurious seats which could accommodate up to 300 patrons. But, this isn’t what set off the sports betting industry off.
Wondering what made Las Vegas the betting haven we know today? The federal government. In 1982, the federal taxes were further reduced to 0.25 percent from 2 percent.
The result of this government initiative was the launch of The Hilton Superbook in 1986. The Superbook was a bigger version of Stardust. You might know the site today as Westgate, home to the best sportsbooks in Las Vegas. Since then, sports betting in Nevada has been unstoppable.
The Supreme Court ruling of May 2018 didn’t affect the sports betting scene in Nevada – it might have fired things up instead. To paint a picture of the current sports betting scene in Nevada, every casino within Las Vegas has a sportsbook in huge stadium-like spaces with plush seats and larger screens – and we all know that Las Vegas has MANY casinos.
Online Daily Fantasy Sports Betting in Nevada
Daily fantasy sports (DFS) is considered interactive and also a game of skill. Winning depends on your knowledge and a deep understanding of the sport. Until October 2015, it was legal and fully operational in Nevada/
But, the DFS betting protocols changed from October 15th in 2015 when the Nevada Gaming Control Board issued a comprehensive statement banning DFS contests which were not hosted by a licensed service provider. In their statement, they also instructed the online DFS sites to apply for the old (traditional) pools betting licenses for them to continue operating within the state lines. Unfortunately, the time and money required for the licensing was unreasonable and too much forcing all of the DFS sites to cease their operations in the state. It’s also speculated that the DFS sites were unwilling to relinquish gambling in the state, setting a precedent that could deeply hurt the DFS legalization efforts of other states. Since then, there are no DFS sites in the Silver State.
FanDuel and Draftkings are the top companies that closed shop in 2015.
In 2016, talks and attempts to come up with alternatives to the licensing process of the DFS operators failed. FanDuel and DraftKings drafted a bill closely resembling the Daily Fantasy Sports legislation which had passed in the states that have legalized DFS, but they weren’t too lucky.
Governor Brian Sandoval noted that there wasn’t need for the drafting of a law to change the Nevada DFS laws. This is because: even though DFS isn’t technically illegal in the Silver State, the DFS operators are required to obtain licenses similar to any other type of gambling license in the state, but the operators are not willing to go through the hassle of applying for new licenses.
US Fantasy, the only DFS provider, received its license to offer a slightly different type of DFS pari-mutuel-style DFS in 2016. The problem is that this DFS provider does not operate in Nevada.
Online Poker in Nevada
Online poker is the online casino game that is legal in Nevada. This online game became legal and regulated in February 2013 when bill AB114 was passed into law. This bill authorized online poker and allowed their distribution within the Silver state. Ultimate Poker became the first official online poker site in 2013 May. It was, however, closed in 2014 November.
The passing of the bill was a big win for Nevada considering that this same bill and several others have been passed around for years.
In essence, the passing of the bill into law gave the brick and mortar casinos the authority to finally host online poker sites that catered to the residents of the Silver State. The law also gave software providers the right to team up with all the existing casinos/ establishments to bring in the games closer to the people. Today, every online poker site is a joint venture between an existing casino and a software provider.
The two leading online poker sites in Nevada are RealGaming.com and WSOP.com.
WSOP has been in the online poker scene for long, but it delayed its launch in 2013 to not only tinker with its software but also to watch the events around Ultimate Poker. And their strategy worked. WSOP took over the online poker scene as the site with the highest recorded number of average poker players.
One of the reasons for this is that the platform runs on powerful software and there’s also the fact that their tables are simple in design and highly functional. They also offer a wider variety of games and more game types. These features make WSOP the go-to online poker site in the state.
RealGaming.com comes next to WSOP. It is a project by South Point Casino which was launched on 2014 February. Since its run by a real casino, there are no fairness issues reported. However, the software needs a real facelift – it is not the most functional online poker site.
Online Casinos in Nevade
Online casinos are illegal in the Silver State. So, to play slots, baccarat, blackjack, roulette, keno, craps, and any other table game, you have to visit a land-based casino.
Online slots are illegal in Nevada. However, you can play mobile slots thanks to the state’s approval in 2016. Mobile slots are offered by easyPLAY.vegas and anyone above 21 years can register and play. The only catch is that the mobile site doesn’t permit playing slots for real money as it only showcases tournaments.
The Future of Online Sports Betting Nevada
Even with the rise of mobile sports betting, online sports betting remains a far off dream. The land-based sportsbooks dominate the sports betting scene, but the use of in-person verification technologies are seen as a step for the sportsbooks to access the online sports betting demographic.
We expect a significant change in attitude in the future and hopefully, the launch of online sportsbooks.