More betting to come.
The Sinclair Broadcast Group made a terrible business decision in 2019 when it purchased 21 regional sports networks for $9.6 billion. Sinclair has admitted that it overpaid for the properties but there may be some minimal relief along the way. Bally’s, a casino company, and Sinclair have signed a 10-year deal that could get Sinclair into the sports gambling business through its sports programming. Bally’s will get naming rights to Sinclair’s regional networks. The goal is to get people watching Sinclair’s product, sports, to bet on that sports product. The 2018 Supreme Court of the United States ruling in favor of New Jersey in a case involving sports gambling allowed individual states, the District of Columbia and US territories to decide if legalized sports gambling was a good option. Sports television partners including FOX are now in the sports gambling business as are states. Sinclair is going to get some return on its investment.
There are now 25 states and the District of Columbia that plan or are offering some form of legalized sports gambling. Nevada got legalized sportsbooks in 1949. New York, New Jersey, Delaware, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Montana, Oregon, New Mexico, Arkansas, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Michigan, Colorado, Virginia and Tennessee now have various forms of sportsbooks. Sports owners have embraced the legalized sportsbooks and are making money from sportsbooks marketing partners. Quite the turnaround from the days when leagues opposed sports gambling. The NFL and the National Football Players Association inked a deal with a daily sports fantasy company. The NBA’s Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan is on a fantasy sports business board. The NFL allows teams to partner with gambling businesses. Gambling is good for business.