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PASPA: No Longer A Shadow Over New Jersey

PASPA has long been a thorn in New Jersey’s side and since its creation in 1992 the federal law has only been an obstacle for the Garden State. It would not be until nearly 25 years later, that the federal ban preventing New Jersey from offering sports wagering would be struck down by the highest court in the United States, the Supreme Court. SCOTUS further explained the reasoning behind their decision on striking down PASPA by stating that PASPA violated individual state rights and showed favoritism through allowing certain states exclusive access to certain powers by violating anti-commandeering rules.

The Supreme Court’s decision to no longer restrict wagering outside of Nevada will finally allow facilitates in New Jersey the authority and right to offer sports betting services. Even New Jersey’s Governor Phil Murphy has vocally spoken about stepping in and working closely with legislators to enact a law which would authorize and regulate sports betting in the state very soon. This newly established ruling will not only take New Jersey a step closer to legal sports betting but, as well as, other states.

Previously, single-game wagering had only been legalized in Nevada, funneling domestic sports wagers directly into their gaming industry. However, with PASPA gone New Jersey, specifically Atlantic City, may become the next Nevada. The Garden State may begin offering mobile and online sports betting options depending on the availability of the proper technology and software, but there is no doubt in our minds that they haven’t prepared for this moment. In fact, many NJ casinos and racetracks are rumored to begin sports betting services in the next two weeks where guests that are at least twenty-one may wager.

States have begun to openly accept sports betting as a potential revenue stream much like state-run lotteries. Several casino companies such as Caesars Entertainment, Penn National Gaming, MGM Resorts, Body gaming, and Wynn Resorts have seen their stock shares near double in value since SCOTUS’s ruling on PASPA. However, Congress can at any point establish a national framework for sports betting or ban it once more on a federal level. To continue, Justice Samuel Alito has made it known in the Supreme Court case’s majority opinion that Congress can act if it wishes or leave states to determine their own destiny.

Since the ruling, the American Gaming Association has praised SCOTUS for its decision while other Major Sports Leagues such as the PGA, NCAA, NBA, and MLB have made public statements, in an albeit begrudging manner. Several sports leagues players’ unions have stated that they would want to be involved in the creation and implementation of legal sports betting in some way to mitigate concerns regarding fixing games and point shaving.

While many are rejoicing in the potential future of legally domestic sports gambling offers, it is better to err on the side of caution. For instance, any “state-run” online sportsbooks that pop-up in the coming weeks could be dupes and illegal, as many states outside of NJ are said to have their systems pending in the coming months – potentially years from now. Therefore, to protect yourself from any discrepancies it is better to gamble at registered and licensed offshore sportsbooks until states gain the official go-ahead and get their ducks in a row.