The Land of Enchantment was pretty enchanted with sports betting very early in the process after PASPA was overturned by the US Supreme Court following Murphy v. NCAA.
New Mexico was quick to pounce before the end of 2018 with legalized sports betting. New Mexico is a retail-only state, which is a bummer for those that don’t live near the casinos that take sports bets, but there are casinos in Albuquerque and Santa Fe that are accepting wagers, which makes up a good portion of the population in the state.
We wouldn’t think of New Mexico as a state to have a lot of interest in sports betting with no pro teams, but the launch date for the market was October 2018, so it was something that came together very quickly, largely because of the insistence and persistence of the tribal casinos in the state.
It is also worth noting that there are 27 casinos in New Mexico and only four of them currently take sports wagers, so there is a real chance for growth and expansion, which could also include additional forms of online gambling or poker.
How Do I Bet on Sports in New Mexico?
As of March 2020, Santa Ana Star Casino & Hotel in Bernalillo, Inn of the Mountain Gods Casino in Mescalero, Hilton Buffalo Thunder in Santa Fe, and the Route 66 Casino Hotel and Isleta Resort and Casino in Albuquerque were the five retail sportsbooks in the state. Santa Ana Star Casino was the first to go online.
There was some push from the New Mexico Lottery towards taking bets on sporting events in 2018 and 2019, but those have since faded away. For now, the tribal casinos, because of their compacts with the state, are the only ones that are legally allowed to accept wagers. It is interesting to note that such a low number of casinos are taking wagers, despite the opportunities.
US Bookmaking was actually the first operator in New Mexico through the Santa Ana Star Casino & Hotel and continues to operate there and at the Isleta Resort and Casino. William Hill is the provider for the Mountain Gods Casino. National Sports Book Management runs the book at the Hilton Buffalo Thunder in partnership with the Las Vegas Dissemination Company.
To this point, there is no online or mobile betting in New Mexico. There has not been much of a push either. Tribal gaming compacts are generally very complex in nature and that would make it tough to do anything more than retail at this point in time.
Perhaps if some of the other casinos offer sports betting and add some more operators to the mix, then things could progress a little bit further, but that remains to be seen.