A little more than four years ago, the United States Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992.
Since their landmark ruling, 30 states plus the District of Columbia have jumped into the legal betting industry bringing in gargantuan revenues.
States around the country released their sports betting numbers for May. The strong results indicate that while inflation may be affecting the stock market, it certainly has not deterred bettors from making investments on sporting events.
The month of May was strengthened by MLB, the NBA Playoffs, the NHL Playoffs, several UFC cards, as well as both the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness.
May 2022: Top States In Reported Sports Betting Handles
1. New York: $1,269,862,570
2. New Jersey: $766,412,352
3. Nevada: $562,000,848
4. Pennsylvania: $493,350,519
New York, which only launched mobile sports betting in January, now leads the way with the only reported handle in the billions among all states.
The Big Apple experienced the third-biggest revenue month of 2022, bringing in $110,418,075 off a staggering $1,269,862,570 in total sports betting handle in May. The 8.7% hold percentage is the highest the state has enjoyed since November 2021.
The success of the first-place Yankees and Mets, along with the Rangers who beat both the Penguins and Hurricanes in Game 7s, did not propel New York bettors to a winning month over the sportsbooks. While the state’s beloved clubs boosted handle, the rest of the betting options strongly went in the favor of the sportsbooks.
New Jersey saw a decrease in total sports betting handle in May, falling from $926,946,780 in April to $766,412,352. Although it may seem alarming to see a 17.3% drop, sportsbooks did increase their total revenue from $50,345,808 to $61,594,016.
The Garden State enjoyed its second-largest revenue generating month of the year behind March, which brought in $66,404,370 on the strength of March Madness.
It is perplexing to find New Jersey fall to its lowest overall handle since last August, despite the allure of brick-and-mortar locations on the sandy beaches of Atlantic City.
Nevada casinos made a whooping $1.3 billion in overall gaming revenue off a handle of $561.6 million for May. The Silver State, which brought in $1.23 billion in overall revenue in April, set a new all-time record for the month of May in state history.
Las Vegas witnessed a boom in strip tourism thanks to the Canelo Alvarez vs. Dmitry Bivol boxing match but did not see the spike translate into sports betting success. Nevada tallied its lowest sports betting handle of 2022, taking in only $562,000,848 while bringing in total revenue of $26,999,000 for an overall hold percentage of 4.8%.
Las Vegas sportsbooks will continue to struggle to keep up as states like New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania offer attractive markets such as “same-game Parlays.” If Vegas sportsbook directors continue to be afraid to adapt to what other operators are offering, revenue could continue to drop as sports bettors find no reason to travel to Vegas when they can get everything they desire in their own backyard. It won’t be long before Illinois and Pennsylvania knock Nevada out of the top tier.
Pennsylvania finished in fourth in May, making $47,828,553 in revenue off $493,350,519 in handle, resulting in its best hold percentage (9.7%) in 2022.
It appears bettors in the city of Brotherly Love were burned by dismal performances of their hometown teams. The Phillies went 10-18 in May, destroying the bank rolls of bettors after being listed as favorites in 10 of those 28 (36%) games by oddsmakers. The action on the hardwood didn’t help Pennsylvania bettors recoup funds lost on the diamond as the 76ers were knocked out of the NBA Playoffs by the Heat in six games.
Frankie Taddeo is a successful high-stakes fantasy football player who created the first-ever DFS program ever offered in a Las Vegas sportsbook. Frankie is SI Betting's Senior Analyst and provides his significant experience and resources in the sports betting scene. You can follow Frankie on Twitter @Frankie_Fantasy for his latest betting and fantasy insights from Las Vegas.
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