Sports betting is an increasingly popular form of gambling. The simplest definition is placing a bet on the outcome of a sporting event. But the practice dates back centuries. People have been placing wagers on the outcome of sporting events long before the games themselves were recognized as such. Some sources claim that wagering activities first began in Ancient Greece, while others point to earlier evidence. Regardless of the origins of the practice, there is plenty of evidence that suggests it has been in existence for as long as mankind has played sports.
While the majority of Americans support legalized sports gambling, lawmakers are not as sure. The Supreme Court ruled against legalized sports gambling in a 5-4 decision. The ruling was based on arguments made by Ted Olson, a U.S. Solicitor General in New Jersey, and Paul Clement, a lawyer for the leagues. But the decision will make sports betting a reality in some states and may be in the hands of lawmakers soon.
In the meantime, some states are moving forward with legalizing sports betting. However, the market is not uniform throughout the U.S., and some illegal operators still enjoy an edge. Despite the dangers associated with illegal sports operators, the general public can be safe betting on sports through state-licensed operators. In addition, technology and competition are improving safety in regulated markets. But it’s important to know which states are taking the right steps to make these laws work.