NJ Sportsbooks Lose Big on Super Bowl; Nevada’s Make $10.7M

NJ Sportsbooks Lose Big on Super Bowl; Nevada’s Make $10.7M

A Super Bowl that was anything but the high-scoring affair many expected produced decidedly mixed results for the sportsbooks in Nevada and New Jersey, the two states where legalized sports gambling is most prolific.

New Jersey sportsbooks collectively lost $4.6 million on $34.9 million wagered on Super Bowl LIII between the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams, the Division of Gaming Enforcement said Monday.

Bettors wagered almost $35 million on bets tied to the Super Bowl at New Jersey sportsbooks, which opened last May following the U.S. Supreme Court striking down a federal ban on legalized gambling outside Nevada. The game was the first major sporting event for bettors since the Supreme Court’s decision.

New Jersey sportsbooks paid out $39.5 million to those who won bets. Many of the gamblers who won did so by wagering on New England to win and cover the spread.

The Patriots were 2.5-point favorites and the over-under was in the mid-50s on most boards heading into Sunday night’s NFL championship. New England beat Los Angeles, 13-3, in a game with little offensive output despite both teams featuring two high-scoring offenses that ranked in the top four in the NFL.

The cumulative points scored was the lowest in Super Bowl history.

Back-to-Back New Jersey Disappointments

New Jersey sportsbooks were optimistic the Super Bowl would cause a flourish in sports gambling following lower than expected handle and revue collected for the month of December.

For the month, New Jersey sportsbooks collectively saw handle decline from $330,748,563 in November to 319,173,548 in bets in December, with revenue falling from $21,243,865 in November to $20,814,222 in December.

The dip came after a record month for both handle and revenue in November.

New Jersey was the first state outside Nevada to open a sportsbook in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s ruling last spring. Legalized sportsbooks are now operational in Delaware, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.

Of the eight states that have opened sportsbooks within the past six months, New Jersey is expected to have the largest handle related to Super Bowl bets due its availability of internet gambling.

FanDuel, which opened a sportsbook at the Meadowlands Racetrack, also took a hit on the Super Bowl.

The company reported losses of $5 million, with 75 percent of its customers placing money on the favored Patriots, with many taking advantage of an introductory offer provided them favorable odds at 53-1 on either team, though the payoff was in store credit.

“All of this combined to leave New England as a big loser for the FanDuel Sportsbook. Very big in fact,” the sportsbook said in a statement, per Fortune. “We estimate our customers won almost $5 million from us on the Big Game (net winnings).”

Nevada Betting Down But Still ‘Solid’

In contrast to New Jersey, Nevada sportsbooks experienced a far better Super Bowl Sunday. Nevada sportsbooks won $10.7 million on nearly $150 million wagered, according to the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

Although Nevada sportsbooks came out ahead and saw the second-most dollar amount wagered on a Super Bowl, this year’s total did represent nearly an eight percent decline from 2018, when $158.4 million was placed on the championship game between the Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles.

However, in 2018 Nevada sportsbooks won just $1.1 million.

“At the end of the day it is a very solid number,” said Nevada Gaming Control Board senior research analyst Michael Lawton, per Reuters.

In Mississippi, bettors wagered close to $4.67 million on the Super Bowl, per the Associated Press; in Delaware, bettors wagered $2.2 million, per Reuters.

Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Rhode Island, and New Mexico have not report their betting figures related to the Super Bowl.

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