US sees record legal – and illegal – turnover on Super Bowl

US sees record legal – and illegal – turnover on Super Bowl

Tuesday, February 9, 2016 Totally Gaming
AGA's Geoff Freeman said betting is "America's new national pastime"

Nevada sports books brought in a record $132.5m (€118.6m) in Super Bowl wagers ahead of Sunday’s showpiece NFL American football game.

In figures released by the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), the US state’s 194 betting operators recorded winnings of $13.3m, a hold rate of 10.1 per cent. The turnover was 14.4 per cent up on 2015, when bookies saw a win rate of just 2.8 per cent.

Geoff Freeman, president and chief executive of the American Gambling Association (AGA), released a statement yesterday (Monday) that contended that an estimated $4.1bn in illegal wagers were placed.

“The record amount wagered - legally and illegally - on Super Bowl 50 offers further proof that sports betting has become America's new national pastime," said Freeman, whose organisation had predicted last September that 97.8 per cent of an estimated $95bn in bets would be made with unlicensed operators over the course of the NFL season.

“Fans want to be invested in their favourite sports and, one way or another, will find a way to do so. AGA will continue to build support for a modern and rational approach that protects these fans and the integrity of the sports we enjoy.”

The win rate was far less than the 16.5 per cent collected two years ago, but bookmakers were pleased with their double-digit hold.

Nick Bogdanovich, director of trading at William Hill US, told the Las Vegas Sun newspaper: “It wasn’t a perfect result, but it was a good-enough result. We just really needed to avoid Carolina covering and the over.”

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