Both online and live sports betting are now 100% legal in the Garden State, thanks to a monumental Supreme Court decision handed down in 2018 — and your options plentiful.
On this page we’ll take you through everything you need to know about wagering on sports in New Jersey, show you where you can bet right now, and give you exclusive bonus codes which you can use to take your bankroll to the next level.
Our preferred NJ online sportsbooks
Sports betting: Everywhere you can play
Yes, you can bet on sports in New Jersey right now, at select brick-and-mortar casinos, horseracing tracks, via mobile devices and online sites. Below we’ve provided a comprehensive breakdown of every venue that legally accepts sports betting wagers in the Garden State, and also highlight which venues might go live in the future.
NJ online/mobile sportsbooks
Skin Bonus Licensing partner Tech Mobile? Launched
DraftKings Get Bonus Resorts Casino Kambi Yes 8/06/2018
BetMGM - Borgata Casino IGT/GVC Yes 8/22/2018
Play SugarHouse Get Bonus Golden Nugget Kambi Yes 8/23/2018
Fanduel Get Bonus The Meadowlands IGT/GAN Yes 9/01/2018
William Hill - Monmouth Park William Hill Yes 9/02/2018
Caesars - Caesars Scientific Games Yes 9/06/2018
888 Sport NJ Get Bonus Caesars Kambi Yes 9/10/2018
BetStars Get Bonus Resorts The Stars Group Yes 9/13/2018
Hard Rock - Hard Rock GiG Yes 1/29/2019
BetAmerica - Golden Nugget SBTech TBA 2/07/2019
Golden Nugget Get Bonus Golden Nugget SBTech Yes 2/19/2019
Resorts - Resorts SBTech Yes 1/31/2019
PointsBet Get Bonus The Meadowlands PointsBet Yes 12/11/2018
Borgata Sports - Borgata Casino IGT/GVC Yes 5/14/2019
NJ land-based sportsbooks
|Monmouth Park||Monmouth Park Sports Book By Will Hill||William Hill||6/14/2018|
|Borgata Casino||Borgata Race & Sports Bar||IGT/GVC||6/14/2018|
|Ocean Resort||Will Hill Sportsbook at Ocean Resort||William Hill||6/28/2018|
|Bally's Casino||Wild Wild West Sportsbook||Scientific Games||7/30/2018|
|Harrah's Casino||The Book||Scientific Games||8/01/2018|
|Golden Nugget||The Sportsbook||SBTech||8/15/2018|
|Resorts Casino||Resorts Sports Book||SBTech||8/15/2018|
|Tropicana||William Hill Sports Book at Tropicana Atlantic City||William Hill||10/25/2018|
|Hard Rock AC||Hard Rock Sportsbook||GIG||1/30/2019|
The latest on New Jersey sports betting
- The state now has 13 live online sportsbooks and 11 active physical locations.
- Handle in the state possibly exceeds that of Nevada, depending on how you do the math.
- FanDuel has pulled ahead of DraftKings as market leader.
- The state is expecting another full football season of visiting bettors from New York thanks to that state’s failure to advance its own legislation.
- Want to learn more about betting? Check out out insights on odds boosts and parlays.
- Our guide to the best bonuses can be found here.
All NJ sportsbooks broken down by licensee
Monmouth Park, a storied thoroughbred racing track located in Oceanport, was perhaps the NJ gambling property most eager to legalize sports betting. The facility has for years suffered from poor attendance, and is no longer the beneficiary of the casino subsidy it enjoyed in previous decades.
Track CEO Dennis Drazin saw sports betting as something of an industry savior and made preparations early to take advantage of the potential windfall. In fact, Monmouth Park execs were so confident the Supreme Court would overturn the law banning sports wagering in the state, that they spent $3 million constructing a sportsbook lounge long before the court had made its decision. The bet seems to have paid off, so far.
- Monmouth Park Sports Book (Monmouth Park) – Opened 6/14/18
- William Hill (skin) – Opened 9/2/18
- PlaySugarHouse Sportsbook (skin) – Opened 8/23/18 on Golden Nugget license, moved to Monmouth Park license in October 2018.
Monmouth Park Sports Book By William Hill
Location: 175 Oceanport Ave, Oceanport, NJ 07757
Monmouth Park was the first NJ property to open its brick-and-mortar sportsbook, doing so just seven days after lawmakers passed a bill regulating the industry. Gov. Phil Murphy was given the honor of placing the first sports bet in the state, plunking down $20 on the New Jersey Devils to win the Stanley Cup.
The book is powered by William Hill, a global sports betting giant which controls around 25% of the total sports wagering market in the UK and Ireland, and operates some 115 sportsbooks in Nevada. While the Monmouth partnership was the company’s first in the state, Will Hill has already struck deals with several other properties to provide sports betting services.
Players can bet on games at one of the 15 ticket windows located in the main building, or the six located inside the William Hill Race & Sports Bar, which was built four years ago in anticipation of this very moment. Eventually patrons will be able to utilize automated kiosks to make their wagers as well.
Monmouth operators have also begun revamping the grandstand area outside the bar to make room for more sports wagering action, and plan to spend many more millions on upgrading the property in the wake of legalized sports betting.
Hours of operation: Mon – Thurs: 10 a.m. – 1 a.m.; Friday: 10 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Saturday 8 a.m – 2 a.m; Sunday 8 a.m. – 1 a.m.
William Hill, a skin operating under Monmouth Park’s license, launched its own sports betting app in early September, becoming the fifth to enter the market. The company utilizes its own bespoke technology for its mobile app, which originally was only available for Android, but now covers iOS powered devices and desktop/laptop as well.
The product launched on the bare-bones side, offering limited betting markets, formats, and just the most basic in-play wagers. Since then the app has undergone a bevy of improvements since its beta launch and offers a fairly standard experience now.
Play SugarHouse Sportsbook
Play SugarHouse was a late entry into the NJ online casino market, but due its innovative and unique product, has managed to carve out a niche for itself in the crowded space.
The company next shifted its focus to sports betting, becoming the third NJ iGaming site to launch an online sportsbook app, behind DraftKings and BetMGM.
SugarHouse leverages its own custom-built platform, created in-house by parent company Rush Street Interactive, but has hooked up with sports betting software maker Kambi to shore up its sports wagering offering.
The site was originally offered through Golden Nugget’s license but later made a deal with Monmouth Park (in part to avoid a conflict that would have prevented wagering on basketball.)
Players can access the Play SugarHouse sportsbook through the company’s current online casino site by clicking the “Sports Bets” item in the navigation menu.
Located in East Rutherford, The Meadowlands is widely known as the premier horseracing track in the Garden State. The facility is part of the renowned Meadowlands Sports Complex and, due to its proximity to MetLife Stadium (home to the New York Giants and New York Jets) and bustling Manhattan, is uniquely positioned to take advantage of legalized sports wagering.
Soon after the Supreme Court tossed out PASPA, Paddy Power Betfair (PPB), operator of Betfair Casino, made a bold move by acquiring FanDuel, the second largest DFS company on the globe.
In June, PPB struck a deal to become the retail and online/mobile sports betting partner of The Meadowlands (along with Tioga Downs in New York). The track’s excellent location and famed reputation, coupled with Fanduel’s ubiquitous name recognition, could potentially help the facility become the king of handle in the state.
- FanDuel Sportsbook (The Meadowlands) – opened 7/14/18
- FanDuel Sportsbook (skin) – opened 9/1/18
- PointsBet Sportsbook (skin) – opened 1/17/19
- CG Technology Sportsbook (skin) – coming soon
FanDuel Sportsbook at The Meadowlands
Location: 1 Racetrack Drive, East Rutherford, NJ 07073
The sportsbook at The Meadowlands got off to a slower start than rival-track Monmouth Park, launching a full month later. The delay likely had something to do with the facility ironing out the kinks in its complex deal with partner FanDuel.
A temporary sportsbook was constructed and opened to the public on July 14, with company officials deciding to showcase the FanDuel brand instead of Paddy Power, Betfair or The Meadowlands. They surmised that the DFS site’s strong brand name would have more cachet with players than either of the other two companies.
The FanDuel Sportsbook, while somewhat difficult to get to, spans 5,300 square feet and has a capacity for up to 500 sports lovers. The space features 15 sports betting windows and over 60 TV screens, along with personal monitors at each table.
High rollers can enjoy some extra privacy in the FanDuel VIP lounge.
Hours of operation: Mon – Thurs: 10 a.m. – 1 a.m.; Friday: 10 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Saturday: 7 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Sunday: 8 a.m. – 1 a.m.
FanDuel Sportsbook online
Instead of rushing its product to market, FanDuel took its time in launching its online/mobile sportsbook, which went live on September 1. The extra time gave developers the opportunity to put a sheen and polish on the app that we haven’t yet seen with competitor offerings. In our opinion, FanDuel debuted with one of the strongest sports betting products in NJ, while offering some of the best lines in the business to boot.
FanDuel Sportsbook is comprised of various technologies, which work together to create a smooth and enjoyable betting experience. The company’s own designers created the UI for the product, while gaming software developer GAN handles the player account management system. The platform, which is the heart of any online gaming operation, is provided by industry powerhouse IGT.
Bettors can access the FanDuel Sportsbook from the dedicated FanDuel website, or download its companion iOS or Android apps through their respective online stores.
Unlike DraftKings, FanDuel allows out-of-state players to view betting lines, even if they aren’t geo-targeted as being inside the Garden State.
Borgata has long been the top earning land-based casino in Atlantic City, so when the opportunity arose to offer its slots and table games online, the property was quick to snap up a license. To turn its iGaming ambitions into reality it partnered with platform provider GVC (formerly bwin.party), launching an online casino as well as its own networked poker room.
Borgata also wasted no time getting involved in sports betting once regulators gave the green light, and has laid plans to become a major player in NJ and beyond. In July, the casino’s parent company, MGM, announced a 50-50 joint venture with GVC, which would allow its various properties to open up sports betting operations quickly across the U.S.
- Borgata Race & Sports Book (Borgata) – opened 6/14/18
- BetMGM (skin) – opened 8/22/18
Borgata Race & Sports Book
Borgata was determined to become the first AC casino to launch its sportsbook offering, a goal it achieved on June 14. The casino was the second licensee to offer brick-and-mortar sports wagering, behind Monmouth Park, which opened up shop a few hours earlier in the day.
Borgata’s sports lounge is situated adjacent to the poker room in the location formally known as the Racebook. The venue features 100 seats with individual flat screen monitors, 10 betting windows and a video wall for comfortable viewing of major events.
While Borgata has teamed up with GVC for its ambitious U.S. expansion, the casino uses IGT software to power its retail sportsbook operation. IGT is also integrated with MGM Resorts’ sports betting technology at 10 major Las Vegas strip properties.
Hours of operation: Mon – Fri: Opens at 11 a.m.; Sat – Sun: Opens at 9 a.m. — hours subject to change based on sports programming
BetMGM unveiled its sportsbook app in August, a full three weeks after DraftKings became the first to do so in the state.
Just like the Borgata Race & Sports Book, the BetMGM app is powered by IGT software and backed by the IT specialists at GVC.
BetMGM also hosts its own online casino under the Borgata umbrella, with sports betting now integrated into the web client. Players also have access to Android and iOS versions of the site’s sportsbook.
Ocean Resort was built on the site of the former Revel, and opened just hours after the Hard Rock AC in late June 2018. The original Revel was constructed at a cost of $2.4 billion, but was shuttered after just two years of operation. The property was eventually bought by Colorado developer Bruce Deifik, who revamped the facility at a cost of $400 million.
In May 2018, Ocean announced that it would team up with bookmaker William Hill for its brick-and-mortar and online/mobile sportsbook operations. The property opened a temporary sportsbook in June after the state passed a bill regulating sports wagering. A state-of-the-art, 7,500 sq ft. permanent book has since been opened.
- William Hill Sportsbook at Ocean Resort (Ocean Resort) – opened 6/28/18; permanent book officially opened on 9/6/18
William Hill Sportsbook at Ocean Resort
Location: 500 Boardwalk Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Extra info: Betting guide
Ocean bigwigs cut the ribbon on the casino’s permanent sportsbook on Sept 6, just in time for the start of the 2018 NFL season. The book is located right in the center of the casino floor and is without a doubt the most luxurious and extravagant sports wagering facility in the state.
The venue was built at a cost of $6 million and was part of Chairman Bruce Deifik’s vision to create a best-in-class sportsbook on the Boardwalk. The 7,500 space features 360-degree video walls, dozens of viewing screens, multiple bars, lounge seating with individual charging stations, along with seven betting windows and several self-serve betting kiosks.
Hours of operation: Mon – Sat: 10 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sunday: 9 a.m. – 12 a.m.
While Golden Nugget may not be the most-trafficked brick-and-mortar casino in Atlantic City, it punches way above its weight in the online space. Whether that extends to sportsbook gross gaming revenue remains to be seen.
Golden Nugget is the state’s premier online gambling licensee, and is the clear leader in terms of virtual slot and table game revenue. For iGaming, the casino operates alongside Play SugarHouse and Betfair, two brands which have also found surprising success in the state.
GN also announced plans to bring Churchill Downs under its umbrella, which occurred in February 2019 when it added the BetAmerica brand to its stable.
Golden Nugget-licensed sportsbooks/skins
- The SportsBook (Golden Nugget) – opened 8/15/18
- Golden Nugget Sportsbook (skin) – opened 2/19/19
- BetAmerica NJ (skin) – opened 2/7/19
The SportsBook at Golden Nugget
Location: 600 Huron Ave, Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Golden Nugget launched a temporary sportsbook on August 15, 2018 to little fanfare, the same day that Resorts Casino debuted its own. GN’s sports wagering services are powered by SBTech software, through a partnership that was announced in July.
As soon as PASPA was tossed out, the casino immediately set to work on constructing its permanent book, moving the poker room to the fourth floor to create space for the new area. A few weeks later, a fully kitted out book was launched, which features seating for over 100 guests, more than 50 TVs, five video walls and several self-service betting kiosks.
Hours of operation: Daily: 10 a.m. – 12 a.m.
Golden Nugget Sportsbook online
Resorts launched its online casino in 2015, two years after the industry went live in the state, and has had striking success in scoring partnerships with blue-chip online gaming brands.
While online poker may not have lived up to the state’s lofty expectations, the property managed to ink a partnership deal with online poker behemoth PokerStars, which debuted in 2016 and quickly became king of the market.
For sports betting, the casino scored a huge fish when it finalized a deal with DraftKings, the global leader in daily fantasy sports. It has also continued its relationship with PokerStars, which offers its own sports wagering product under the brand FOX Bet.
Apart from online skins, the casino boasts its own brick-and-mortar sportsbook, which opened in a temporary capacity in August.
- Resorts Casino Hotel Sports Book (Resorts) – opened 8/15/18
- DraftKings (skin) – opened 8/6/18
- FOX Bet NJ (skin) – opened 9/13/18
- Resorts Casino Sports (skin) – opened 1/31/19
Resorts Casino Hotel Sports Book
Resorts launched its temporary brick-and-mortar book on August 15, the same date as Golden Nugget. The book’s launch came more than a week after partner DraftKings debuted its mobile sports betting app in the state.
The on-property book is located next to Bar One inside the complex, and features six betting windows, an interactive lounge area, a 15-foot video wall and comfy seating for patrons looking to relax and tune into their preferred games.
A larger, permanent sportsbook is currently being constructed and will open up sometime in the near future.
Hours of operation: Daily: 10 a.m. – 2 a.m.
Already positioned as the market-leader in daily fantasy sports, the Supreme Court decision to overturn PASPA will likely prove a huge windfall for the sports-focused gaming company.
Notoriously aggressive, DraftKings was already at work building up a sportsbook team, even before the SCOTUS decision was announced. Once the ruling came down, the company erected billboards promoting its own branded sportsbook — which at that time didn’t even exist.
But that soon changed. DraftKings quickly integrated its proprietary software platform with Kambi technology, creating a formidable sports betting product in record time. The company was the first to launch a mobile sports betting app in the state, beating out even experienced competitors like Caesars, which already offers the service in Nevada.
FOX Bet NJ Online Sportsbook
Fox Bet is the sister brand of industry leading online poker machine PokerStars. The entry of FOX Bet into the NJ online sports betting space marks an extension of Resorts existing relationship with PokerStars parent company, The Stars Group, and a partnership with FOX Sports.
FOX Bet may be a relative newcomer to sports betting — it’s precursor BetStars having only launched in European and other regulated markets a couple of years before debuting in NJ in September 2018 — but it has already established itself as a bigwig overseas, with revenue growing by leaps and bounds seemingly every quarter. It’s very possible that FOX Bet will enjoy similar success on the other side of the Atlantic.
FOX Bet NJ has all the trimmings and power one would expect from the company behind PokerStars and Fox Sports. It boasts a sleek and clean desktop site along with similarly polished Android and iOS apps.
Resorts Casino Sports
With its experience operating nearly a dozen sportsbooks in Nevada, Caesars is well-positioned to take advantage of the coming U.S. sports betting explosion. Indeed, Caesars stock rose immediately following the Supreme Court decision, with CEO Mark Frissora boasting that the company would be able to “set up very quickly.”
Caesars is the parent company behind Bally’s, Harrah’s, and of course, Caesars Casino in the Garden State. It is also heavily involved in online gambling there. Through its online casino license, it offers virtual casino games under the Caesars, 888, Harrah’s and WSOP.com brands, and is involved in an extensive partnership with international gaming titan 888.
Harrah’s and Bally’s boast their own brick-and-mortar sportsbooks (technically under their own licenses), with Caesars sitting on the sidelines for now, instead going the online route.
- Wild Wild West Sportsbook (Bally’s) – opened 7/30/18
- The Book (Harrah’s) – opened 8/1/18
- Caesars (skin) – opened 9/6/18
- 888 Sport NJ (skin) – opened 9/10/18
The Book at Bally’s Wild Wild West
Location: 1900 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Bally’s was the third AC casino to launch a brick-and-mortar sportsbook, trailing Borgata and Ocean, taking its first bet on July 30. The debut marked Caesars Entertainment Corporation’s entry into the New Jersey sports betting market.
The sportsbook is currently housed in a temporary facility, which features 30 leather chairs positioned in front of three massive TV screens and five smaller screens. Bally’s has teamed up with gaming software developer Scientific Games to power its retail sports betting offering, a departure from Nevada, where it relies on Miomni technology.
Hours of operation: Mon – Thurs: 11 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.; Friday: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. – 11:30 p.m
The Book at Harrah’s
Location: 777 Harrah’s Blvd, Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Extra info: Betting guide
Harrah’s opened up its temporary sportsbook just two days after sister casino Bally’s, with a Frank Sinatra and Elvis impersonator amongst the first to place bets there. Like Bally’s, Harrah’s relies on Scientific Games technology to power its retail sportsbook services.
The temporary digs feature 28 leather chairs, six high top tables and five big screens. However, if its Las Vegas sportsbooks are any hint, the company likely has something much more extravagant in store.
Hours of operation: Mon – Thurs: 11 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.; Friday: 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. – 11:30 p.m
Caesars online sportsbook
Caesars went live with its online sports betting offering just hours before the first game of the 2018 NFL season, making it the sixth Internet-based book to launch in the Garden State.
Scientific Games was again tapped to develop the casino’s mobile and desktop sportsbook components – no surprise considering that the company also powers Caesars’ online casino site.
Sports wagering is integrated into Caesars’ existing iGaming site and app, and can be accessed either through the main navigation menu under “Sports” or via a similar label in the mobile app.
888 Holdings is already heavily intertwined with Caesars Entertainment in New Jersey through technology partnerships and branded online gaming skins.
The global gaming giant continued that relationship in November 2018, when it launched its sportsbook website and mobile apps under the Caesars license. Instead of integrating its product into its existing online casino site, like some have chosen to do, 888 decided to create an entirely new website, separated from its virtual slots and table games. There is, however, a pair of links on the site which players can click to access the company’s casino and poker offerings.
While 888 provides a platform for a number of Caesars’ gaming sites, it still lacked a solid sports betting dimension of its own. To bolster its platform, it turned to Kambi, as have several other NJ online sports betting skins thus far.
One of the newest casinos in Atlantic City, Hard Rock AC is the most recent brick-and-mortar to launch sports betting. The operator began taking wagers both online and at its physical location right before the 2019 Super Bowl.
- Hard Rock Atlantic City sportsbook – opened 1/30/19
- Hard Rock Casino Sportsbook (skin) – opened 1/29/19
Hard Rock Atlantic City sportsbook
Location: 1000 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Sports betting is technically live at Hard Rock, but the facilities available are currently very lacking and are hoped to be soon upgraded during the month of March.
Hard Rock Casino Sportsbook
NJ online sportsbook reviews
Our sportsbook analysts provide the most thorough, in-depth, honest and comprehensive reviews of all of New Jersey’s emerging sportsbooks. Our reviewers are all located in the Garden State, and put each book through its paces, while focusing closely on the following factors:
- New player bonuses: Our readers are, understandably, highly interested in the lucrative welcome bonuses offered by NJ online sports books. These can take a couple of forms, and generally consist of no-deposit bonuses, free bets and deposit match bonuses. We dissect the fine print and tell you which are worth your time and which you should avoid, while offering exclusive bonus codes that will give you the most bang for your buck.
- Promotions: NJ sportsbooks do everything they can to attract new players and keep them loyal through one-off and revolving promos. This is a great benefit for Garden State gamblers, who can cash-in by playing at the right sportsbook at the right time. We keep track of all promos running in the state, so check in frequently to see what’s being offered at any given time.
- Betting lines: A sportsbook may offer an attractive bonus and promotions, but might spread unfavorable lines – something which could eat into your win rate. We keep a close eye on the lines set by NJ books and compare them with not only in-state competitors, but with lines set in Vegas and beyond.
- Game selection: New Jersey law allows for state sportsbooks to offer a huge array of betting types on a wide range of sports. NFL, MLB, NBA, college football and more are all fair game. Our reviews lay out exactly which sports are offered at which book, and which types of wagers can be placed on them.
- Cashiering: Legal sportsbooks offer a major advantage when it comes to making deposits and withdrawals. While unregulated offshore casinos use illegal and unreliable cashiering methods, licensed NJ books provide a huge range of options for getting money on and off the site. We’ll give you a rundown of every method offered at each individual book.
Benefits of legal online sports betting
Safe, legal, regulated
Gambling at a regulated NJ online sports betting site, you’ll never have to worry about having your hard-earned cash pilfered by an unscrupulous operator, falling victim to a scam, or being deceived by dishonest promotions.
This is not the case at illegal, offshore sports books, which are sometimes successful at convincing novice players that they are licensed, when they are, in fact, operating totally unchecked.
New Jersey online books are regulated by the NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE), the same body which governs the state’s land-based casinos. Before becoming licensed, state sportsbooks must pass a rigorous and lengthy inspection and investigative process, which includes thorough background checks of key employees. If you ever have a conflict with an NJ gaming site, rest assured that the DGE has your back.
Black-market sportsbook sites are legally prohibited from accessing the U.S. banking system. Instead, they try and circumvent the law by using illegal tactics which puts your money at extreme risk. Players who choose regulated sportsbooks, on the other hand, have little to no problem making deposits seamlessly and receiving withdrawals rapidly.
Most major sportsbooks offer a bevy of deposit methods, which can include Visa and MasterCard credit cards, Neteller, bank wires, paper checks, PayPal and cash at its partner-casino’s cage. What’s more, your money must legally be kept separate from other operator expenses, meaning that a run on the bank won’t have any impact on your withdrawal.
Mobile betting via authorized apps
NJ law allows for online sportsbooks to offer apps for mobile devices, made by manufacturers like Android and Apple. Offshore bookmakers, however, are prohibited from offering mobile apps to U.S. customers through the iOS and Android app stores.
Playing on a dedicated mobile app, rather than directly on the website through a mobile browser, brings a host of benefits and provides a much more reliable experience for customers looking to place bets on-the-go. Indeed, patrons can make wagers, check lines, view loyalty points and make deposits and withdrawals via a smooth and polished piece of software downloaded right to their smartphone or tablet.
New Jersey sports betting: FAQ
The law forbids those who have vested interests in key sports markets from booking bets in that market. This is why Golden Nugget Casino, which is owned by Tilman Fertitta (also the owner of the NBA Houston Rockets), cannot accept NBA wagers.
We expect more sites to offer sports betting in the very near future.
New Jersey is currently only one of three states, with Pennsylvania about to become the fourth, to offer at least some form of regulated online gambling.
Under existing law, any Atlantic City casino authorized to offer a game can offer the same game online, including sports betting, in so long as it possesses an iGaming license. Borgata, Caesars casinos, Golden Nugget, Resorts, and Tropicana already have an online gambling license, as do newly opened Hard Rock Casino and Ocean Resort Casino.
However, worth noting is that each license holder is limited to just three skins (individually branded websites).
Fortunately, New Jersey bettors are not burdened with having to visit an affiliated land-based casino to set-up a mobile account, as is often the case in Las Vegas. Instead, all that’s required is for the player to download the Android or iOS powered app, punch in their registration information, have their account approved, and deposit using one of a variety of payment processing methods.
Players that already have a NJ online casino or poker account at a site may be able to bypass the registration process entirely, as we’re seeing several operators integrate their sports betting operation into their existing online gambling platform.
- Money line
- Point spreads
- Over/under totals
- Teasers; two outcomes or more
- Parlays; two outcomes or more
Online sportsbooks in Europe have recently introduced more exotic betting structures, including accumulators. Some of these innovations could find their way to New Jersey.
Speaking of innovations, several NJ online sports betting sites have adopted the popular early cash out feature, which allows bettors to lock up a win or cut their losses (depending on the in-game status of the contest) prior to the close of a match.
New Jersey law mandates that betting on college sporting events that take place within the state are not allowed, nor is betting on college teams from NJ playing out of state.
In Nevada, sports betting is on the upswing, having generated a record-breaking $248.8 million in 2017. $4.89 billion worth of wagers were placed, eclipsing 2016’s then record by nearly $360 million. Annual handle has nearly doubled in the past decade.
The New Jersey market stands to be much bigger, as the state boasts a far larger population (8.9 million for NJ v. 2.94 million for NV), and doesn’t require mobile and online users to first sign-up and load their account at an associated brick and mortar casino. The ability to register and deposit from anywhere is a game changer, and should lead to the bulk of industry revenue originating from online books. To wit, Gambling Compliance places the industry’s near-term forecast at $297.8 million, with what appears to be nearly $250 million coming from online.
For perspective, online casinos and online poker only made $245.6 million collectively in 2017, and that was the industry’s (very successful) fourth full year.
As early as August, which is a low-time for sports and prior to the explosion of NJ online sportsbook launches, the industry was already generating over $9 million. Monthly totals are expected to go through the roof in September, when more betting options became available, and the NFL Season kicked off.
The story of NJ sports betting
Sports betting in the U.S. was crippled by a 1992 law called the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), which prohibited full-scale sports betting outside of Nevada.
New Jersey, a state already reliant on gambling tax revenue, was given a one-year period in which to pass legislation explicitly legalizing the industry in the state. Gridlock prevailed, however, and lawmakers were unable to come to a consensus on a bill, thus shutting the state out of the industry for decades to come.
The regrettable decision would come back to haunt them. In the late 2000s, when the AC gambling industry was showing signs of decline, State Sen. Raymond Lesniak began to make a push to reverse the ban and allow NJ casinos start accepting sports wagers legally.
In 2009, Lesniak introduced a sports betting bill, which was eventually passed by statewide referendum by a two-to-one margin in 2011. Early the next year, Gov. Chris Christie signed legislation legalizing sports betting at the state’s race tracks and casinos.
Major professional sports leagues, however, were having none of it. Shortly after regulations were posted, on Aug. 7, 2012, the NCAA, NFL, NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball filed suit against New Jersey and Christie, the start of what evolved into a five-year legal battle.
The sports leagues won the case, commonly known as Christie I, in district court and appeals court and then appeared to have ended the affair when the Supreme Court declined to accept New Jersey’s appeal on June 23, 2014. But Lesniak and the Garden State did not give up.
In 2014, Lesniak introduced new legislation, which attempted to comply with PASPA by repealing chunks of the state’s sports betting prohibitions, while also limiting the activity to casinos, racetracks and former sites of racetracks. Again, the sports leagues filed suit and were ultimately granted an injunction.
Around this time, though, attitudes surrounding sports betting began to change, with some leagues softening their stance and even embracing the quasi-gambling vertical daily fantasy sports. Despite that, sports leagues maintained a leg up in what became known as Christie II, and again prevailed in district and appeals court.
In a last-ditch effort, New Jersey attempted a Hail Mary, asking the Supreme Court to hear a case it declined to take just three years earlier. To the surprise of many, it accepted.
The Supreme Court case
Oral arguments were heard in the Supreme Court case – ultimately dubbed Murphy v. NCAA – on December 4, 2017. Ted Olson, an attorney representing New Jersey, argued that PASPA was unconstitutional, as it commandeered states’ rights to enforce federal sports betting prohibition. The New Jersey thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association was also a plaintiff in the case.
The NCAA, NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB, which have long expressed concern that sports betting would tarnish the integrity of their leagues, were represented by Paul Clement. U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco and various groups opposed to sports wagering filed briefs in support of the leagues.
On May 14, 2018 SCOTUS announced its ruling that the law violated the 10th Amendment in a 7-2 decision, and declaring it completely unconstitutional by 6-3. Justices Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and (in part) Breyer dissented.
The decision essentially gave the green light for states to legalize sports betting, should they choose to do so. New Jersey lawmakers acted quickly, passing a law to regulate the industry the following month. Three days later, Monmouth Park racetrack and Borgata became the first two properties to open sportsbooks in the state.