Stephen Varanko III Explains the New Rules Around Sports Gambling
The case of Murphy vs. NCAA was finally decided upon by the Supreme Court and this may just completely change the world of sports gambling. Essentially, once implemented, states will be entitled to regulate the industry of sports betting themselves. This came after the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was considered unconstitutional. Understanding exactly what this means for the industry is quite complex, and legal expert Stephen Varanko III wants to make things clearer.
First of all, he wants people to understand that the decision does not mean it is suddenly possible to gamble on sports. It does mean, however, that change is afoot. Stephen Varanko III hopes that the following will provide some clarity on what this change will look like.
Essentially, states will now have discretion to regulate sports better – if they so choose. Those include New Jersey, as this state was the one that started the entire process in the first place. How quickly the state of New Jersey will have the mandates in place, and how rapidly other states will follow remains to be seen, however. Stephen expects that New Jersey will move quite rapidly, and he believes that, by the start of the NFL season, they will be ready to go. Other states are likely to move equally rapidly, particularly West Virginia and Pennsylvania, as they have already been working on certain bills themselves. Meanwhile, Mississippi, Oregon, and Delaware already had bills in place.
Stephen expects that by 2019, the majority of states will start to implement things. To date, 15 individual states have expressed an interest in regulating sports betting. It is not clear whether they will actually do so or how long this will take, particularly since there are a lot of stakeholders to consider. Additionally, it is likely that the various sports leagues will also have certain expectations in terms of how they would like to see things regulated. Clearly, a lot of lobbying will have to take place.
In fact, it is this diversity of stakeholders that interests Stephen Varanko III in particular. There is a possibility that sports leagues will have to become politically involved, which would be something completely new. Not just that, but there are so many different leagues to bring together that it may become very difficult to come to an agreement that everybody can sign up to.
Varanko also feels that the scene had already been set for the Supreme Court decision. America is a country of gamblers and it has always surprised many people that sports gambling wasn’t already legal. Repealing the PASPA, as such, has been a long time coming. The commercial casinos are also likely to have seen an entrance here, as they were one of the main lobbyists in repealing the act in the first place and many professional sports leagues had been hinting at it as well.
According to Stephen Varanko III, it is also very important to understand the difference between sports gambling and the Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS), which has already been legal for a long time. DFS has operated legally in 18 states. With the new legislation, it is likely that there will be a significant change to DFS as well, although perhaps not in Las Vegas. While most people associate sports betting with Vegas, because of the fact that gambling is legal there, the reality is that sports betting only accounts for a tiny percentage of their annual revenue, so the fact that people will now be able to bet on sports outside of this will unlikely have a real impact.
Stephen Varanko III points to the fact that other types of gambling have already taken over the country. No longer are casinos found solely in Vegas and Reno. They are found in some form or another in the majority of states. During the 2000s, there was a sudden boom of online poker, which led to regional casinos opening poker rooms as well. None of that had an impact at all on the Vegas casinos, which simply continued to operate and grow. Varanko believes the same thing will happen once sports betting is legal across the country.
He feels that DFS should see the ruling as an opportunity. The business had already been faltering for some time, but it now has the chance to offer something that people will actually be looking for. Sports betting will slowly become available in the 50 states and they can grow with that. If anything, therefore, this could lead to a positive economic development for the country as a whole.