MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred To Re-Think Status of Sports Betting
The record breaking Super Bowl wagers in Nevada have highlighted once again the obvious popularity of sports betting in the U.S. We have reported on polls that clearly show most Americans favoring legalizing sport betting as it is going on anyway.
The recent years have also seen various former anti legalization proponents like NBA Commissioner Adam Silver adopting a pragmatic approach to the issue. The latest to add his voice to leaning towards regulating sports betting is MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred who said the he is monitoring the issue and re-thinking the stance of baseball on the issue. He said,” There is this buzz out there in terms of people feeling that there may be an opportunity here for additional legalized sports betting. We are reexamining our stance on gambling. It’s a conversation that’s ongoing with the owners.”
Manfred went on to say that fans who bet on games promote engagement and it could fuel the popularity of the sport. The most telling statistic is that of the American Gaming Association who estimated that $4.7 billion was bet on this year’s Super Bowl but of that 97% of bets placed were illegal.
This means that the money is going to illegal bookmakers instead of federal coffers where it could be used to fund many social projects. Manfred said that whether it’s legal or not sports betting is happening and it is better to have a regulated stance on the issue that also protects the integrity of the sport.