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NBA Commissioner Expects Legal Sports Betting Soon

NBA Commissioner Expects Legal Sports Betting Soon

While the newsfeed gets more and more inundated with sports gambling stories here in the mostly dead space between popular league events, a whole lot of folks and seem to recognize the writing on the wall: Sports betting is simply too lucrative a business and too much of a taxable windfall for the federal government to push away for very much longer.

In the past, several high profile US professional and amateur sports leagues were instrumental in getting sports betting banned. Now, though, it seems that most major leagues and commissioners – with the exception of Roger Goodell and the NFL (because jerkwater chuckwagon and “No Fun League”) – are finally embracing the opposite. For them, however, the impetus is less evident. On some level, perhaps the increased governmental tax revenue will help teams secure various stadium and infrastructure projects in the towns where they do business. But aside from that, they seem to be looking at this thing from a branding point of view.

Adam Silver, head honcho of the NBA and resident Voldemort-looking creepazoid, believes that legalization is coming sooner rather than later, perhaps within the next couple of years. His reasoning for why he supports the initiative is simple. Says Silver, “People want to bet throughout the game. It results in enormous additional engagement with the fans.”

More engagement, of course, means more money. And Silver is right. Most fans want a simple, legal, easy way to put a few bucks on a basketball or football or baseball game here and there. Many of these folks likely use the overseas sportsbooks to get their fixes, but there is undeniably a huge contingent of both casual gamblers that won’t go through the trouble to set up such an account and fence-sitting half-fans who need an extra kick of some kind to make them really enjoy the athletic products on offer.

Make no mistake, legal sports betting is coming. I just hope LeBron is still playing by the time it gets here…

So I can bet against him.