Both the Jets and Giants may sit with 4-13 records at the foot of their divisions, but that didn’t stop New York’s enthusiasm for Super Bowl LVI. Well-known to be the biggest sports betting occasion in the US every year, The Empire State opened up to mobile betting just in time.
There was a tremendous amount of action in the run-up to this year’s Super Bowl. Outrights, handicaps, and even some fun props were bet on by the New York masses. Even on the day itself, live betting let some capitalize on an emerging comeback win for the Los Angeles Rams in the fourth quarter.
With the initial buzz of New York sports betting combined with such an exciting Super Bowl matchup, the big game was bound to push NY to new heights. This proved to be the case. After a hot start, New York has muscled its way to the pinnacle of US online betting. However, not all sportsbooks are enjoying this early success as much as they may have hoped.
Hot Start to the Long-Awaited NY Sports Betting Industry
Way back in April 2021, then-Governor Andrew Cuomo approved the rollout of online betting. It took until January 8, 2022, for the New York State Gaming Commission to finally flick the “on” switch. Since then, it’s been nothing but staggering figures emerging from the NYSGC.
Just two weeks into New York sports betting, mobile apps generated over $1.1 billion. At that point, on January 23, there were five licensed providers. At the end of January, those numbers had increased drastically again. By its 24th day in existence, NY mobile betting had accepted just shy of $1.7 billion in wagers. Only $0.02 billion of that count wasn’t placed with online sportsbooks.
January’s average sum of daily wagers for the 24 days is $69.6 million. The hot start continued into February, with the NFL playoffs proving to be a major driver. At the 30-day mark, February 6, the state closed in on $2 billion in wagers. Due to the hefty taxation on gross gaming revenue, this generated over $70 million for the state.
Now, with the emphatic Rams triumph over the Cincinnati Bengals in the rear-view mirror, we can see the colossal impact of the big game.
Super Bowl LVI Brings in the Bettors
Super Bowl LVI took place on the evening of February 13. Most of the betting for the big game will have taken place before kickoff. However, there will have also been plenty of people betting on the game in-play. Up to Super Bowl Sunday, the state’s Gaming Commission reported a mobile sports wagering handle of exactly $2,456,895,700 ($2.46 billion in bets).
For a long time, Nevada has been the betting hub of the United States. Since PASPA’s repeal in 2018, New Jersey has become the online betting beacon. By opening to sports betting and casino gaming online, The Garden State – which also spearheaded the PASPA repeal – has been the frontrunner. Now, New York eclipses them both.
According to ESPN, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois reported the most bets placed on Super Bowl LVI. They reported $179.8 million, $143.7 million, $68.0 million, and $60.5 million, respectively. However, at the time of the article, New York hadn’t reported specific Super Bowl figures. Some reports say that New York mobile betting accounted for a quarter of all US Super Bowl betting.
Given how avid the New York sports betting base has been, and the draw of the Super Bowl, it isn’t a stretch to imagine The Empire State as being the biggest for betting on Bengals vs. Rams. A lot of the state’s success to date comes from its large population by comparison to other states where betting is legal. Its population of nearly 20 million more than doubles New Jersey and is more than six-times Nevada’s count.
Betting Offers a Tremendous Windfall for the State
Sports betting is enjoyed by millions of people across the US. It can allow people to capitalize on their sports knowledge and attention to detail. However, New York introduced sports betting to increase state revenue. So far, it is certainly benefitting from its taxation of the handful of licensed New York mobile sportsbooks.
At the five-week mark, when $2.4 billion had been wagered, New York had already brought in over $78 million. Prior to its launch, the prediction for the State Budget Office was just below $50 million for the first three months of action. With around five weeks left before we’re three months into NY betting, the estimate has been raised to nearly $110 million.
This revenue stream comes directly from taxation on NY sports betting license holders. New York enforces one of the heaviest tax levies in the US. The state slaps a 51 percent tax rate on gross gambling revenue, which includes promotion money that they offer. Gross gambling revenue represents the amount wagered minus the amount won by users.
As a result, analysts forecast most NY mobile sports betting operators looking at huge losses to date. In fact, the NY Post says that one online sportsbook has likely lost close to $200 million since the January 8 launch. The colossal advertising campaigns, tax on welcome bonuses, and GGR tax has hit them hard. Still, the rewards for getting in early and claiming a slice of the two million-strong user base so far should pay off in the long run.
It’s also worth noting that, to get a license, operators need to pay close to $200 million in fees. This also goes to the state, furthering its take from the legalized sports betting scene. Sportsbook will have run the numbers beforehand. So, they knew that an initial hit to get in and accumulate users – more than expected, in fact – is worthwhile.
While the biggest sports betting event in the US is behind us, NY mobile betting is bound to continue to grow. We’ve still got the Rangers looking good for a strong playoffs run, and the star-studded Nets will be gunning for the Championship.