As you’ve probably heard, the US Supreme Court made history this May when it allowed for states to legalize sports betting. Other than Nevada, of course, the state fastest to crown itself the capital of sports betting was New Jersey.
Just as soon as the Division of Gaming Enforcement gave a green light in June, sportsbooks started showing up in different locations across the state. Something more curious happened with online sportsbooks, however.
There was a 30-day moratorium in their way, which is why we only saw NJ sports betting develop its online presence until August.
Even then, when DraftKings made their online sportsbook a reality on August 6, we still had to wait a few weeks before the market balanced itself with DraftKings’ competitors getting a seat at the table as well.
The first one to rain on DraftKings’ parade was playMGM, who released the playMGM sportsbook on August 22nd. With the end of the DraftKings monopoly, we saw the true birth of the online market for NJ sports betting - and it hasn’t stopped changing since.
Once the floodgates opened, gaming operators didn’t even wait their turn to releasing their offerings. On the very next day, Aug. 23, the SugarHouse Sportsbook went live. FanDuel and William Hill followed, and the two even shared a release date - September 1st.
In fact, during the three weeks from the end of August to mid-September, six online sportsbooks came to be, making a total of eight in NJ sports betting. The last three to join the party were Caesars, the 888 Sportsbook and finally, BetStars on Sept. 13.
If you’re wondering how long could the expansion of the NJ sports betting market goes on, there is, in fact, an answer. The state did impose a limit on companies and venues with a gambling license. As of right now, it states that each licensee is allowed three online sportsbook brands.
There are currently nine casinos and four racing venues in New Jersey. If we do the math, which has honestly never been this fun, it amounts to a very impressive number of 42 online sportsbooks!
Talk about an oversaturated market. Thankfully, we will probably not get to see that number become a reality, an industry analyst, Chris Grove, speculated in a Forbes’ piece. He expects the NJ sports betting market to max up around 30-ish online sportsbooks and he even proposed a timeline - 18 before this football season, and 10 more before the next one sets off in 2019.
Here’s a more detailed rundown of the sportsbook options New Jersey’s got to offer.
There are 8 online sportsbooks and 8 physical ones. Out of the land-based ones, only some have linked their business to an online brand - Borgata to playMGM, Golden Nugget to the SugarHouse Sportsbook, Resorts to DraftKings and BetStars, Meadowlands to FanDuel, and last but not least, Monmouth Park to William Hill.
The rest: Bally’s, Hard Rock, Harrah’s, Ocean Resort, Tropicana, AC Racehouse and Cherry Hill only have land-based sportsbooks. And let’s not forget Caesars, who is a special case, as they don’t have a physical sportsbook in New Jersey, but are linked to two online brands - 888 Sport and, of course, their own brand- name.
It’s smart to assume that those that still haven’t stepped up to the task of launching an online sportsbook, are likely to do so in the near future. And let’s not forget, casinos outside of New Jersey might want a piece of the pie, too.