By Skip Charles in Vegas
The world has changed considerably since May 2018, when the U. S. Supreme Court essentially legalized sports betting in ever state.
Pennsylvania and New Jersey have seen incredible business, with Jersey surpassing Nevada for the top state spot in the nation, and PA is fourth.
It was 2012, and New Jersey was seeking to legalize sports betting. One by one, the commissioners gave depositions, offering their doomsday predictions. Bud Selig, then atop Major League Baseball, asserted that he was “appalled” by the idea of expanding sports wagering outside Nevada, adding that gambling is “evil, creates doubt and destroys your sport.”
The NBA’s David Stern agreed and then went and made it personal, scolding New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, “The one thing I’m certain of is New Jersey has no idea what it’s doing and doesn’t care because all it’s interested in is making a buck or two.”
In 2021, a mere nine years later, their successors would have a very different conversation on the subject.
In April, the NBA’s Adam Silver ribbed MLB’s Rob Manfred about baseball’s leisurely pace of play. As Manfred recalled to Sportico, Silver told him, “Rob, you gotta stop talking about the pace of game. Your pace of game is going to be absolutely perfect for sports betting.”
In other words, all that time between pitches might be maddeningly at odds with our hyperstimulated culture—but it is a tailor-made interval for fans to place a wager.