Watch CBS News

New Jersey Tops Nevada In Sports Betting Volume In May

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Here's all you need to know about how fast sports betting is growing in New Jersey: the state took in more sports bets last month than Nevada did to lead the nation.

According to gambling regulators in both states, New Jersey saw $318.9 million worth of bets, edging past Nevada, which took $317.4 million.

From those bets, New Jersey casinos and racetracks made $15.5 million in revenue, compared to $11.6 million in Nevada.

FLASHBACK: Gov. Murphy Signs New Jersey Sports Betting Bill Into Law

New Jersey won a U.S. Supreme Court case in May 2018 that cleared the way for all 50 states to offer legal sports betting should they so choose.

And it jumped into the market with both feet with the goal of dethroning Nevada as the sports betting capital of America.

"It was only a matter of time," said Jay Kornegay, head of the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. "States with higher population numbers will continue to surpass Nevada, and New Jersey has a population of 9 million, not counting (people from) surrounding states, versus Nevada's 2.5 million."

He said one of the reasons Nevada slipped behind New Jersey include comparatively fewer NBA basketball playoff games this year.

Since it took its first sports bet in June 2018, New Jersey has taken in more than $3 billion in sports bets. Nevada handled $5.2 billion in sports bets over roughly the same period.

RELATED STORY: How Has Sports Betting In New Jersey Been Going?

It remains to be seen if New Jersey can maintain its lead with large neighboring states either offering sports betting or considering it. Pennsylvania, its neighbor to the west, already offers sports betting, including mobile wagering. And New York is struggling with sports betting legislation that has been bogged down over whether to approve mobile betting.

Kornegay said New Jersey could maintain its lead, but will likely be challenged by Pennsylvania's growth, and the eventual entry of New York into the mobile betting market.

Nevada is still — literally — the nation's go-to destination for sports betting, with gamblers flocking to Las Vegas for big events like the Super Bowl or the NCAA college basketball tournament.

That is something New Jersey is trying to replicate; casinos continue to plow tens of millions of dollars into physical sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business. Within the last week in Atlantic City, the Borgata and Bally's opened expanded sportsbooks worth more than $20 million.

The investment is coming even as 80% of sports bets in New Jersey are taken online or via smartphones, a percentage that industry officials expect to increase to 90% within the next 5 to 10 years.

(© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.