The holiday season has finally passed. Hope your 2019 is off to a great start as we've reached the beginning of the new year. And while many were ringing in the new year with drinks, parties, and fireworks, gamblers around the world had plenty to digest from the end of 2018 into the beginning of 2019. The NFL has reached its second season with the playoffs set and ready to kick off next weekend. College football has one game remaining to decide it all and it's a familiar one at that. The UFC put on a pretty entertaining card where Cyborg was proven to be an actual human. The NHL, NBA, and college hoops continue their regular season grinds. And the talk of 2018, sports betting expansion in the US, looks primed to be the talk of 2019. Let's dive right in and take a quick look around the industry in this week's Gambler's Report.
Fined For Illegal Bets?
Two Atlantic City casinos were each fined for accepting illegal bets on college football in the state of New Jersey. New Jersey state law prohibits providers from taking bets on local collegiate teams. Caesars was hit with a $2,000 fine for accepting bets on the Rutgers-Kansas football game played in September. The Division of Gaming Enforcement notified Caesars of the violation and the fine was imposed in December.
The other violator was the Golden Nugget, who was forced to forfeit $390 it had taken in on wagers for New Jersey college football games in September. The money was forfeited as the bettors' identities could not be determined to issue a refund. You have to imagine at some point New Jersey will realize this is a stupid law and modify it to include allowing bets on local collegiate teams.
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Sports Betting Queued Up
States continue the race to get legalized sports gambling on the books as they all want to be among the first in their regions and capture portions of the initial hype market.
Michigan lawmakers passed legislation during a lame-duck session that could potentially open the door to legalized sports betting in The Wolverine State. The bill authorizes the Michigan Gaming Control Board to allow sports wagering and may even permit internet gaming operators that are licensed to accept internet wagers. The bill still requires the governor's signature.
Virginia is also showing signs of looking at legalization as Sen. Chap Petersen "likes the chances" that Virginia's General Assembly will legalize sports gambling. The states 45-day legislative session will begin in January.
December payout reports closed the year looking relatively clean and the very early ones from January are following the same pattern. Payouts appear to be going out within stated time frames from both big and small shops. As we open up 2019 Bitcoin remains the far and away quickest, cheapest, and most efficient way to both deposit and withdrawal funds.
While most books look pretty clean this time of year with football money still flush before the Super Bowl, Youwager continues to be in a bit of a rough patch with reports of hacking, confiscations, and poor customer service popping off across review sites. Book has been in business for a long time but I would proceed with caution. And as always, make sure you do your due diligence when thinking of depositing your hard earned money into any book.