What Sports are Americans Wagering on?
Written by Phoebe
Published date · Dec. 3, 2021 | Last Updated · Dec. 14, 2022 | Read Time: 3 mins
What Sports are Americans Wagering on?
Every year, millions of Americans are wagering on sporting competitions such as the NBA, NFL, MLB, and NHL. Several states are developing their own sports betting markets, but what you can wager on is determined entirely by the regulations within your state. We looked at the most popular sports in the United States and where you can bet on them!
The most popular sport to bet on in America is football, particularly the NFL and the Super Bowl. There are currently a variety of regulated online sportsbooks accepting betting on NFL games. Some of the best states to bet on NFL games are Illinois, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Some of the most popular sportsbooks to bet on the NFL are DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, PointsBet, and many more. In addition, hundreds of millions of dollars are bet each year on the Super Bowl, being one of the most popular and anticipated sporting events in the world.
Basketball is another popular sport in the United States for betting. There are several opportunities for sports bettors during the regular NBA season, playoffs, and March Madness. In 2021, 30.6 million Americans bet on March Madness in person. You could even put on a prop bet on what colored shoes a player will be wearing at the game. Illinois and Pennsylvania are popular states to wager, alongside having clubs such as Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers. Other states that allow you to bet on basketball are New Jersey, Colorado, West Virginia, and Nevada. Recommended sportsbooks to bet on basketball are DraftKings, Sugarhouse, BetMGM, and Pointsbet if your state does not allow sports betting.
Baseball betting is a major industry with annual revenues in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Teams have also signed sportsbook deals for millions of dollars. The Chicago Cubs, for example, has an agreement with DraftKings that is reportedly worth more than $100 million. Chicago, Illinois, is also home to the Chicago White Sox and is great to visit for baseball fans and sports bettors alike. Considering MLB is America's original ballgame, all big sportsbooks ensure they feature the game on their sites. For example, some sportsbooks specialize in MLB wagering on their apps such as DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, PointsBet.
Major leagues such as the NBA, NFL, and MLB are arguably unable to generate as much local pride in the same manner that college football does. Collegiate football arguably has an even larger and loyal fanbase on a grassroots level more than any other sport in America. So it is unsurprising that fans are enthusiastic about betting on their favorite teams. Some of the best betting sites that cover college football are DraftKings, SugarHouse, Caesars Sportsbook, and bet365. States such as New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Colorado, Nevada, Iowa, and others offer legal college football betting, but some have limitations. For example, in-state tournaments are prohibited in New Jersey.
Alongside your generic, traditional sports are some surprising options you may not have heard of until now. For example, one of the most popular competitions to bet on recently is esports. While there is much debate about whether esports should even be considered a sport, many are keen to jump on the bandwagon of this multi-billion dollar industry. Ever since the Covid-19 pandemic made traditional sports grind to a halt, esports managed to stay afloat due to its ability to exist online.
Alongside esports, bettors during the pandemic found new and interesting ways to substitute their traditional, in-person casinos, one of which was ping-pong. So much so that Draftkings reported 60% of its earnings during part of the pandemic came from ping-pong tournaments. If you want to see what these types of tournaments are serving, check out the over 90 matches a day happening online worldwide. Sportsbooks specializing in table tennis include DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, PointsBet, and more.
Or more favorably known as Octopush, underwater hockey tournaments are becoming more and more popular in the online world. Waterproof cameras stream the match (which is essentially hockey underwater), where you can bet on the outcome. Scuba equipment is banned, so players will have to try and score a goal while factoring in they have to surface for air. This is not the only underwater sport to gain popularity in the last few years, as underwater rugby and underwater archery are also being wagered on in online casinos. Experts have noted that since the pandemic and the rise of betting in esports, many sportsbooks are willing to embrace innovative sporting categories, so we may be seeing even more interesting sports become mainstream in the future!