For the longest time, Nevada was the only center for legalized sports betting in the United States. Now, Nevada is the Western home of sports betting in the United States. The Eastern home of U.S. sports betting is New Jersey. Former Governor Chris Christie challenged PASPA, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, and won. The Supreme Court overturned the ban and legalized sports betting was born in the state of New Jersey in May 2018.
Major credit also goes to Senator Ray Lesniak, who initially brought forth a lawsuit to challenge PASPA, calling it unconstitutional because four states were exempted from the ban, but 46 states were not. After the court ruled that only the governor had the authority to challenge the law, Christie took up the reins and moved the ball forward.
Governor Phil Murphy is the one that crossed the line and scored a proverbial touchdown for proponents of legalized sports betting by winning Murphy vs. National Collegiate Athletic Association. Delaware actually beat New Jersey to the punch by six days, but the state legalized sports betting on June 11, 2018.
At this point in time, New Jersey is a thriving and booming sports betting market. In some respects, analysts believe that the Garden State has surpassed Nevada, despite Nevada’s rich sports betting tradition in Las Vegas, Reno, and other casinos around the state.
By May 2019, New Jersey was taking more in handle (total amount of money bet) than the state of Nevada. What Lesniak and Christie started has swept the nation, as 13 states now take wagers. They are Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Arkansas, New York, Iowa, and Indiana.
Getting past PASPA was a huge starting point, but putting together the infrastructure for betting was also important. New Jersey has several brick-and-mortar casinos, but the quest to make sports betting available to everybody with apps and websites was at the forefront of the plans.
Surely part of the quest to get PASPA overturned was to breathe life into Atlantic City, where places like Bally’s, Caesars, Harrah’s, Resorts AC, Hard Rock AC, Golden Nugget, and Tropicana were desperate for a new revenue stream. Because of sports betting apps and online capabilities, several companies have licensing through those properties to allow access to all residents of the state of New Jersey.
Residents outside the state of New Jersey can sign up for these apps as well. They just have to be inside the borders of the state in order to access them. Residents of New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia, and other adjacent states can download the apps and can make sure that they are funded, but bets can only be placed in New Jersey and geolocation tracking determines whether or not the account holder is in the legal jurisdiction or not.
Caesars, Resorts, Hard Rock, and Golden Nugget aren’t the only operators in the state. Those are just the ones that predominantly reside in Atlantic City. Resorts AC actually holds the licensing for the wildly popular DraftKings Sportsbook. DraftKings was the first online sportsbook in the state of New Jersey and countless gamblers flocked to see what it was all about and to get their bets in.
Resorts AC also has a partnership with BetStars Sportsbook, a derivative of the well-trafficked PokerStars app.
Meadowlands Racetrack & Casino is the home of the FanDuel Sportsbook. You can bet in person at the facility, which is conveniently located very close to MetLife Stadium for those in town for football action and is also extremely close to the New York City metro area. While there is sports betting in New York, there are no online capabilities at time of writing, which means that NYC residents would be unable to bet without driving long distances to upstate casinos.
Instead, they can download apps like FanDuel or even DraftKings, slide over the border, and place a bet!
PointsBet is also partnered with Meadowlands Racetrack, so the facility actually has interests in two different operators. That is rather commonplace in the state, as Golden Nugget operates its own online casino and sportsbook, but also has the SugarHouse Sportsbook under its roof. 888sport is under the Caesars umbrella. There are a lot of partnerships, a lot of operators, and several technology games that are part of the online sports betting scene in Jersey.
PointsBet is a very unique bird in the sports betting industry, as it isn’t your traditional sportsbook. The flexibility and creativity with the state of New Jersey for all of the different operators has created a lot of competition in the market and that benefits bettors tremendously. New Jersey had been operating online casinos via its brick-and-mortar facilities for a long time before legalized sports betting was allowed, so the state had a head start with online capability and it shows with how advanced the platforms have been from the start.
Monmouth Park, Ocean Resort Casino, and Tropicana are all sportsbooks under the umbrella of William Hill US. Monmouth Park was actually the first sports book to take a legal bet, as Governor Murphy put $20 bets on Germany to win the Women’s World Cup and on the New Jersey Devils to win the 2019 Stanley Cup. Both bets lost, but the seal was broken and that is what matters.
playMGM, or BETMGM, operates under licensing from Borgata in Atlantic City. Unibet and Hard Rock have licensing via Hard Rock AC.
Perhaps that is what stands out the most at this point in time. The competition. The ability to line shop. The different sportsbooks offering different promotions in hopes of getting a larger share of the handle. But, most importantly, the level of convenience for residents mirrors what we would see in Nevada and only Nevada. New Jersey has made it easy for those that want to bet on sports to do so and has even made it easy for residents of nearby states to get in the game. Furthermore, New Jersey’s immediate success has pushed those bordering states like New Jersey and Pennsylvania to adopt online sports betting of their own. It has forced New York to move quicker. It has allowed states in other parts of the country to see the financial windfalls that sports betting can provide.
Nevada is and will forever be the true pioneer in sports betting, but when it comes to online sports betting, bettors around the country owe a debt of gratitude to the state of New Jersey. The rapid expansion of sports betting after PASPA was overturned happened in the blink of an eye and within a year, there were several operators. It remains hard to believe that New Jersey was taking more money in handle than Nevada less than a year after Murphy won the case in the Supreme Court.
If you live in New Jersey or any bordering state, please check out our reviews of the different sportsbook options. Even if you don’t, sports betting is coming to your state and technology partners like SBTech, Kambi, Scientific Games, William Hill, and IGT are good bets to come to your state. DraftKings and FanDuel are working on a large presence in other states. William Hill already has one. Caesars properties are located all over the country. Get an idea for what you can expect when sports betting comes to your zip code.
Because it will. And that is thanks to the state of New Jersey.Read more
#1 | PointsBet
PointsBet is the New Jersey’s best new online bookmaker, offering all your traditional fixed odds markets (Sports) + the world’s most exciting sports betting format, PointsBetting – where winnings or losses aren’t fixed, but depend on how correct your bet is
#2 | DraftKings
Draftkings officially launched in 2012 as a Daily Fantasy Site, they quickly turned their state of the art DFS platform into a excellent sportsbook.
#3 | William Hill
With more than 100 locations William Hill US is America’s sports betting leader. William Hill offers the most diverse betting menu throughout the year on everything.
- Hail Mary Parlays – Get 15% back on all of your losing parlay wagers, When you parlay 4+ legs on Saturday College Football Games
- Saturday Upset Special – Place a Money Line bet on a +300 or greater underdog, Earn 100% cash back if your team loses by 6 points or less
- Trifecta Sweep – Place 3 bets on the Monday night football game! If you win the full-game spread, total and 1st-half spread: We’ll boost your winnings by $50!
- Gridiron Live – Bet live football for a weekly bonus! Get $10 when you bet $200+ on InPlay football bets. Get $100 if you bet $2,500+
#4 | Sugarhouse
SugarHouse is among the biggest names in Pennsylvania casinos. It’s one of the first to enter the Pennsylvania sports betting market, and is now a fully operational sports betting operation in New Jersey.
#5 | BetAmerica
Owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated, the home of the Kentucky Derby, they have a proud history of providing safe, secure, and fun betting to American patrons.
Terms & Conditions Apply
- $1000 Risk-Free Bet! Owned by Churchill Downs Inc – First time depositors get a risk free bet up to $1000!
- Double Your Payout – Every week get a bonus on the Thursday night football game, first touchdown scored.
- 100% Casino Welcome – Get 100% up to $1000 on your fist deposit.
- Live Bet Bonus – Live Bet $20 and get $20 bonus bet on your first wager
#6 | 888Sport
As a multi-award-winning brand, 888 has won the trust, admiration, and respect of millions of players the world over. Their sports betting platform is among the finest in the world, and now available in New Jersey.