Where And How To Bet On The Super Bowl When You’re In New Jersey

For the first time, New Jersey sports betting will be able to take legal bets on the Super Bowl. Here’s a list of where you can bet on the Super Bowl in NJ.

For the first time, New Jersey will be able to accept legal bets on the Super Bowl. In case you are wondering, this is a big deal.

It’s a big deal for New Jersey sportsbooks, which are likely to welcome a record number of sports bettors to their windows.

It’s a big deal for sports bettors because they can legally wager on the most popular sporting event in the country.

Finally, it’s a big deal because the NFL is likely to witness higher fan engagement than it has in previous years. In fact, the increased engagement may even help the league embrace sports betting as the other major sports leagues have.

When is the 2019 Super Bowl?

Let’s start with the basics. The big day is Sunday, Feb. 3, and kickoff is slated for 6:30 p.m.

Super Bowl LIII (that’s 53, in case you’re wondering) will take place at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

Sports bettors can watch the game on CBS and live stream it on CBS All Access. Or better yet, head to your favorite NJ sportsbook to watch the game amid a sea of enthusiastic NFL fans.

Where to bet on sports in New Jersey

NJ sports betting is now home to nine mobile sports betting apps and nine retail sports betting locations. The plethora of sports betting options gives sports bettors plenty of choices with which to enjoy the big game.

Where to bet on the Super Bowl online

Online and mobile sports betting is quickly surpassing retail sportsbooks in terms of popularity.

Chances are some football fans that head to a sportsbook to watch the Super Bowl will place a wager (or three) using their mobile app. As long as you are inside NJ state lines, it’s a viable option.

Lines at the betting windows may be long, so you may want to hedge your bets and make sure you are ready to place your Super Bowl bets online.

Before you head out to a Super Bowl party or your favorite book, make sure you have one of the following mobile sports betting apps on your phone:

Online SportsbookBrowser?Android and iOS?Exclusive Welcome Offer
DraftKings SportsbookYesBoth$35 free bets
BetStars NJYesBothUp to $500 on deposit
FanDuel SportsbookYesBothUp to $500 risk-free bet
Caesars SportsbookYesBoth$10 free bet
888 Sport NJYesBoth$10 bonus
SugarHouse SportsbookYesBothUp To $250 on deposit
William Hill NJYesBothNA
playMGM Sports NJNoBothNA

To learn more about each of the sportsbooks, you can read the reviews below:

For the most part, each NJ online sportsbook app offers the same betting options such as moneyline, point spreads, and over-under. But not all of them offer in-game betting.

PlayMGM’s sports betting app doesn’t have in-game betting. DraftKings has a Sportsbook Pool option for the casual bettor, and PointsBet offers something unique called Points Betting.

Where to watch and bet on the Super Bowl

Partying on Super Bowl Sunday in a sportsbook is a sports bettors dream.

There are seven sportsbooks at Atlantic City casinos and another two located at racetracks that will most likely host festivities.

Several locations are even convenient to Philadelphia and New York residents.

It’s a sure bet that Super Bowl 2019 will be quite the party scene in Atlantic City.

Here is a rundown of where sports bettors can watch and place their bets on the Super Bowl.

Resorts Atlantic City

Resorts Atlantic City made headlines late 2018 when it expanded its relationship with DraftKings with its retail sportsbook. Sports bettors can enjoy:

  • 15-foot video wall
  • 12 betting kiosks
  • Five betting windows
  • A VIP seating area with food and bottle service
  • Live odds feed

Golden Nugget

The Sportsbook is located inside Golden Nugget near the Main Atrium. It can accommodate seating for more than 100 and includes:

  • Nine self-service kiosks and lounge areas
  • Five video walls
  • Self-service kiosks

Ocean Resort Casino

Ocean Resort Casino opened the William Hill Sports Book at Ocean Resort the day it opened the doors to its casino. The sportsbook sits in the heart of the casino floor and offers:

  • 7,500 square feet of space
  • A central bar surrounded by a video wall
  • Plenty of betting windows
  • Luxury seating


Borgata was the first AC casino to accept sports bets.

The Race & Sports Book is located next to the north entrance near the poker room. For now, until the permanent sportsbook is built and ready for use later this summer, it is in the old racebook location and offers:

  • Seating for 100 seats with individual flat-screen monitors
  • A video wall
  • 10 betting windows
  • Kiosks available for horse racing bets
  • A non-smoking environment


Tropicana Casino is under the new management of El Dorado Gaming. Soon after the change, the property opened its William Hill-powered sportsbook.

Its permanent book is under construction, but bettors can watch the games and place their bets at kiosks inside the casino at:

  • Chickie’s & Pete’s
  • A Dam Good Sports Bar
  • Hooters
  • Rí Rá Irish Pub

Caesars, Harrah’s and Bally’s

Caesars Entertainment opened sportsbooks at its Harrah’s and Bally’s casinos. Its Caesars property, however, does not have a retail sportsbook. Both books have:

  • Video walls
  • Luxury seating
  • Betting windows and kiosks


The FanDuel Sportsbook at the Meadowlands reside on the Meadowlands Sports Complex.

The complex is home to the New York Giants and Jets, of course, making it a popular destination on NFL game days. You can bet it will be beyond popular for Super Bowl Sunday, thanks to its proximity to New York.

Look for plenty of seating, plus:

  • 50+ HD televisions
  • Full bar
  • Free parking

Monmouth Park

Monmouth Park and William Hill teamed up to accept New Jersey’s first sports bet July 14.

It had been preparing for sports betting well before it became legal. Bettors can enjoy:

  • 16 main betting windows
  • Six additional windows in the race and sports bar area
  • Video and live feeds walls

Wait, what about Hard Rock AC?

Hard Rock Atlantic City announced it would open its retail sportsbook sometime in early 2019.

While there is no firm date, the popularity of Super Bowl Sunday as both an entertainment and NJ sports betting high point is sure to be a motivator.

Five Dates That Changed The New Year’s NJ Gambling Scene

2018 will go down as one of the most active for NJ gambling sites and AC casinos. The industry that heads into 2019 looks completely different from 2018.

Now that it is over, it is easy to say that 2018 will go down as one of the most active for New Jersey gambling sites.

Looking back, there are some specific days on the calendar that completely changed the gambling market and will end up leaving a lasting impression for years to come.

The NJ online gambling industry in January 2019 looks completely different than it did in January 2018. Furthermore, it will likely continue to evolve in 2019 as well.

For now, though, here is a look at the dates that shaped the NJ gambling industry as it starts the new year.

1. May 14, 2018

After a lengthy and costly legal battle, the state of New Jersey emerged victorious in its legal battle with the NCAA and the major sports leagues.

The US Supreme Court, in a 6-3 vote ruled that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act is “not consistent with the Constitution.”

As such, May 14 might be the most important date of all of these.

The decision paved the way for each state to legalize sports betting, but New Jersey was one step ahead with a sports betting law already on the books.

The Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) immediately went to work outlining the regulations required for casinos to secure an NJ sports betting license.

While the DGE was hard at work, the level of speculation about revenue, partnerships, and launch plans took on a fevered pace, a pace that would last until the end of the year.

One sportsbook in particular, Monmouth Park, was chomping at the bit to accept the state’s very first sports wager. The sportsbook was even contemplating taking sports bets before regulations were in place. The DGE didn’t look too kindly on that plan, and Monmouth Park ended up sitting on the sidelines with a persistent itch to get in the game.

2. June 14, 2018

Interestingly enough, Monmouth Park was the only company voicing its sports betting plans. It was a little surprising that there wasn’t a rush to the starting line.

Even so, Monmouth Park had company when NJ sports betting was ready to enter prime time.

Monmouth Park accepted the first NJ sports bet exactly one month after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision. A few hours later, Borgata became the first Atlantic City casino to accept a sports bet.

Those two sportsbooks would hold court for two weeks until the launch of Ocean Resort Casino’s sportsbook which coincided with the hotel’s grand opening.

From there it seemed like a new sportsbook came online every few weeks until the end of August. At that time there were eight NJ sportsbooks in operation: two at racetracks and six at AC casinos. Then, Tropicana came online a little late to the party in October, making it nine.

We know there will be at least one more brick-and-mortar sportsbook in early 2019. Hard Rock Atlantic City plans to launch its sportsbook in Q1.

The growth in sports betting revenue has exceeded expectations. In July, the first full month of operation, brick-and-mortar casinos accepted $40,682,237 worth of sports bets, including futures bets.

That figure translated to $3,845,880 of revenue for the sportsbooks.

For November, AC casinos accepted sports bets totaling $92,132,952 for $6,797,295 in revenue. Doubling revenue in just a few short months puts NJ sports betting under the national spotlight as other states contemplate legalizing sports betting.

The best part? The NJ sports betting market is just getting started. We are certainly looking forward to a prosperous 2019.

3. June 28, 2018

Besides sports betting, the other big story shaping the NJ casino landscape was two casinos coming back to life.

After a severe economic downturn that resulted in the closing of five casinos, the timing was right for the re-introduction of two of them.

New investment in two of those casinos generated a sense of optimism about AC’s future that hadn’t been felt in years.

The Boardwalk was one big party over the last weekend in June, as both casinos opened their doors on the same day.

The former Trump Taj Mahal found new life as Hard Rock Atlantic City. And the former Revel Casino was reborn as Ocean Resort.

Speculation leading up to the grand opening was how the two new casinos on the Boardwalk would impact the old-timers. AC casinos were generating solid revenue figures with several months of record numbers.

The fear was Hard Rock and Ocean Resort would cannibalize the other casino’s revenue.

Initial revenue reporting from the first few months shows Hard Rock and Ocean Resort are impacting the profits of the other casinos while contributing to record revenue for the industry.

For example, the total casino win for November was $209.2 million, an increase of 12.6 percent compared to the same month last year.

Borgata, the casino revenue leader, earned $55,788,971 for the month. That is a 7.6 percent decrease compared to the same period last year.

It seems logical that 2019 will see the casino industry continue to adjust as necessary to the new casinos and the expansion of gaming in the region. The big question going into the New Year is whether or not every casino will make it through the transition.

4. Aug. 1, 2018

DraftKings Sportsbook was the first to launch its online sports betting platform that included a browser-based and mobile sports betting app.

It kept its plans close to the vest, making it a complete surprise when it went live. Not only that, but the online sportsbook did not have a retail sportsbook yet.

The rush to market paid off as it was the only mobile sports betting option for nearly a month. That time gave DraftKings a distinct advantage in the market, and it has since maintained its position as the overall revenue leader in the market.

It only took a couple of months for mobile sports betting apps to generate more revenue than retail sportsbooks.

In September, online sports betting brought in $12,567,785 in revenue compared to $11,393,253 for for physical sportsbooks. Two months later, in November, online sports betting more than doubled the revenue from casino sportsbooks — $14,446,570 compared to $6,797,295.

It is an exciting time to be following NJ sports betting and NJ online gambling. We look forward every month to the 12th (or somewhere close to that date). It’s when the new revenue numbers are released and the fun of analyzing what it all means begins.

Speaking of the 12th …

5. The 12th of every month

All the NJ gambling news this year is helping 2018 end on an optimistic note.

There is nothing better to confirm or challenge that optimism than the official revenue reports from the DGE. Live entertainment is great, two new hotels and sports betting fever speak to a growing industry, but only the bottom line can confirm it.

There were several months where the NJ online casino industry posted record revenue figures. Additionally, there were equally as many months where casinos posted double-digit growth over the same periods from last year.

And while we don’t have historical sports betting numbers for the nascent industry, an 87 percent increase from October to November is definitely something to write about.

The bottom line is we can celebrate the launch of a mobile sports betting app and speculate how a new retail sportsbook will impact the NJ sports betting scene. But it isn’t until the 12th that we can see the actual impact.

The numbers don’t lie. That is why every month on the 12th all hands are on deck to crunch the numbers, analyze the data, and find the trends.

It’s also why we are celebrating every 12th for 2018.

Looking ahead to 2019

We know there will be at least one more casino sportsbook launching early this year at Hard Rock AC. And Freehold Raceway is working out the details of its potential launch. Additionally, several online sportsbooks are likely to come online.

Beyond that, AC casinos will be fighting for their place on the revenue leaderboard as the two new casinos settle in. Online casinos, on the other hand, will likely set a few more records.

Furthermore, there will be 12 more 12th’s to help us tell the story of the NJ gambling market. There is surely an exciting story waiting to be told this year.

Atlantic City Casinos Head Into 2019 With Smiles On Their Faces

AC casino news has taken a back seat to NJ sports betting talk, but that doesn’t mean Atlantic City didn’t achieve some milestones of its own.

Atlantic City casino news has taken a back seat lately to all the NJ sports betting talk and online casino revenue chatter.

That doesn’t mean that the brick-and-mortar casinos didn’t achieve some milestones of their own.

The AC casinos that are keeping the Boardwalk hopping include:

Those nine casinos generated $247.65 million in revenue for November, a 20 percent increase from the same period in 2017.

Record revenues are certainly worth celebrating, but its the events that led to generating that revenue we are highlighting here.

Here’s a look back at the top five AC casino headlines for the year and what’s in store for 2019.

1. Hard Rock and Ocean Resort Casino come to life

Two casinos coming back to life on the Boardwalk dominated NJ casino and gambling news for much of the year. Hard Rock Atlantic City and Ocean Resort Casino may have opened on the same day, but their lead up to the big day was entirely different.

Hard Rock documented its entire journey in the press. It courted the community, opened a preview center, and celebrated its 3,000th employee. It gutted the former Trump Taj Mahal, giving new life and a new look to the once ostentatious property.

Ocean Resort, on the other hand, kept its plans close to the vest almost until opening day. Well, most of its plans, anyway. The one thing Bruce Deifik, the owner of Ocean Resort, made very clear from day one was his intent to open a state-of-the-art sportsbook.

Other than that, though, we spent much of the time leading up to the opening speculating how the former Revel Casino would look.

The two properties stayed true to their character on opening day, June 28. One held an over-the-top opening with guitar smashing and Carrie Underwood. The other took a more quiet-celebratory approach.

Hard Rock Atlantic City took guitars and smashed them in an iconic opening ceremony. Ocean Resort cut a big red ribbon with Mark Wahlberg, Jaimie Foxx, and Diplo providing the entertainment.

Now, the two casinos are busy fighting for a piece of the market share. Atlantic City casino revenue is growing, but it appears the market is redistributing the revenue among the casinos — including the new ones.

Once the market completely settles into a new normal, it will be interesting to see if Atlantic City can continue to support all nine AC casinos.

Cautious optimism is the theme.

2. AC casinos add new sportsbooks and a new revenue stream

Exactly one month after PASPA was struck down by the Supreme Court, Borgata became the first AC casino to open a sportsbook.

Surprisingly, other casinos weren’t rushing to get their betting windows operational.

Of course, Ocean Resort was ready to accept its first bet the minute it opened its doors on June 28. Even so, it would be another month before more casinos stuck their toes in the warm sports-betting waters.

Eventually, seven of the nine AC casinos would open a sportsbook by the end of the year. Most of the initial books were temporary, giving the casinos two opportunities to host a party.

An eighth, Hard Rock, is scheduled for an early 2019 opening. The only casino not scheduled to open a physical sportsbook is Caesars.

That doesn’t mean Caesars Entertainment doesn’t have a sports betting presence on the Boardwalk, though. Both Harrah’s and Bally’s accept sports wagers.

Since the launch of NJ sports betting, retail sportsbooks earned $34,401,715 in revenue. To earn that figure, the sportsbooks took in more than $388,549,047 worth of wagers on their properties.

That translates into more food and beverage revenue, more entertainment revenue, and overall, more activity on the Boardwalk. These are all good indicators for a prosperous New Year for AC casinos.

3. Casino celebrations liven up the Boardwalk

At a time when Atlantic City was preparing to welcome two new casinos, AC’s very first casino, Resorts Atlantic City was celebrating its 40th anniversary.

The famed Beach Ball Drop, a live performance by the Village People and fireworks served to honor Resorts’ epic accomplishment. Resorts has long held a position near the bottom of the revenue leaderboard. Even so, it weathered the economic downturn and the closing of five casinos.

The birthday party for Resorts was more than a reason to have some cake; it marked the beginning of AC’s most anticipated summer in a long time.

Part of the anticipation was the promise of 365 days of live performances.

Hard Rock, the global music-themed brand, is determined to help make AC a resort destination.

Its commitment to set “the tone for a new era of entertainment in Atlantic City” undoubtedly helped remind tourists that the Boardwalk is the place to be.

4. AC casinos sharing the wealth

Atlantic City casinos have been posting some strong revenue figures. Accordingly, record revenue often leads to record jackpot distribution.

Through Dec. 15, AC casinos distributed 359 jackpots worth $37,621,422 to New Jersey gamblers. That figure represents a 165.9 percent increase over the number of jackpots doled out in all of 2017.

The Division of Gaming Enforcement‘s jackpot report includes jackpots of $50,000 or more. In 2017, the threshold for reporting was $75,000. The change in how jackpots are reported might account for some of the increase, but surely not all of it.

The 359 jackpots were distributed to the following AC casinos:

Two of those jackpots came in at over $1 million.

Borgata wrote a check for $1,672,498.68 in July. A lucky pull on a Wheel of Fortune Pink Diamond machine activated the lights and sounds indicating a big win.

In September, Harrah’s coughed up $2,481,940.75 when a player sat down at a Wheel of Fortune Crystal Red machine and made the perfect spin.

AC casino revenue shows no signs of slowing down. If that holds, expect more jackpots to make their way into the hands of New Jersey gamblers in 2019.

5. AC casinos spreading their wings

As two NJ gambling sites get ready to launch in neighboring Pennsylvania, it is hard not to think about what it means for AC casinos. This is even more relevant as gaming expansion remains a topic of discussion in the region.

Two AC casinos have applied to launch Pennsylvania online casinos in the Keystone State: Borgata and Golden Nugget. And while the application is strictly for online operation, the casinos and Atlantic City stand to benefit.

Atlantic City is once again staking claim to the title of “America’s Playground.” It will no longer be enough to have a strong presence on the Boardwalk.

Brand recognition outside of the Garden State is important, and the casinos that spread their wings into other states will benefit the most.

When people head to Atlantic City to “play,” they will most likely choose to stay and play with the casinos they know. Ironically, a focus on brand recognition beyond AC may be just what the city and the casinos need to keep growing.

Yes, revenue is at record highs, but not high enough to alleviate the cannibalization that is happening. Borgata and Golden Nugget have the right idea to spread the wings and build their brand outside of AC to solidify their standing on the Boardwalk.

Looking ahead to 2019

As more and more players take to NJ gambling sites, casinos will look for innovative ways to get gamblers to their properties. Expect more parties, promotions and pomp and circumstance.

More than likely by the end of next summer, AC and its now nine casinos will settle into their positions on the revenue leaderboard. By then, we may get an indication if the Boardwalk can sustain all of them going forward.

For now, though, AC casinos will continue to post record revenue numbers, and each casino will continue to do its part to secure its market share.

Looking Back: Top 5 New Jersey Online Casino Moments Of 2018

The New Jersey online gambling market looks different today than it did at the beginning of the year. Here is a look at some of the big headlines of 2018.

The New Jersey gambling market looks completely different today than it did at the beginning of the year.

Besides the launch of NJ sports betting, two new NJ gambling sites debuted. One thing is for sure — it has been a wild ride navigating the changing landscape.

Here’s a look back at the top five NJ online casino headlines for the year.

1. NJ online casinos generate record, after record, after record revenue

There is no bigger story in the NJ online casino landscape than the fact that Atlantic City casinos keep generating new entries in the record book.

With December’s story still being written, the industry set revenue records in six of the 11 months of the year:

  • January ($21,962,339)
  • February ($21,992,124)
  • March ($25,580,210)
  • July ($25,897,517)
  • October ($26,753,878)
  • November ($26,944,073)

Golden Nugget maintained its market-leading position throughout the year, earning more than Borgata (#2) and Caesars (#3) combined in most months.

Online casino gaming in the Garden State shows no sign of slowing down, either. Even in the months where records weren’t set, the revenue still hung around record territory.

The only dark spot on an otherwise sunny forecast is online poker. Online poker continued to post year-over-year declines for much of the year.

There was hope that once shared liquidity launched in May, that the trend would reverse. That hope was short-lived.

As a result, the revenue records are even more impressive when you consider that one of the products is not contributing its share. One thing is for sure … the outlook for NJ online casino gambling in 2019 is very, very bright.

2. Live dealer games spread like wildfire

Golden Nugget was the first AC casino to innovate its online casino product by introducing live dealer games.

It used that differentiation to its benefit for almost two years. In fact, many experts believe live dealer games takes credit for its dominance in the market.

Better late than never, this was the year more casinos finally came on board the live dealer games bandwagon. It began when Borgata added live dealer games to its portfolio in May.

Furthermore, by the end of the summer, eight online casinos were offering the exciting online casino gaming option:

And that is not all. European-based Evolution Gaming opened its live dealer game studio in August. Until then, Golden Nugget had the only studio in town.

No doubt the market needed the additional studio space after expanding from one or two online casinos with live dealer games to eight.

Neighboring Pennsylvania will be bringing more online casinos to the region. Some of those casinos also operate in New Jersey. Look for 2019 to be another year of innovation as online casinos grab for their portion of the market share.

3. Hard Rock and Ocean Resort launch online gambling

One of the biggest stories dominating the online gambling news, besides the legalization of New Jersey sports betting, is the opening of two new casinos.

Hard Rock Atlantic City and Ocean Resort Casino both opened their doors on June 28. What was somewhat unexpected at the time was the launch of their online casinos at virtually the same time.

There was so much focus on guitar smashing and ribbon cutting that the launch of Hard Rock Casino and Ocean Resort Casino almost slid under the radar.

There are more than a dozen NJ online gambling sites, and the new kids on the Boardwalk are getting a late start. Consequently, it is not surprising that both casinos remain at the bottom of the revenue leaderboard despite Hard Rock making an impressive revenue run.

The two online casinos will need to innovate and differentiate themselves from the market to gain some momentum. Look for Hard Rock and Ocean Resort to make a move in 2019 to chip away at the market leaders and increase their market share.

4. DraftKings Casino takes shape with blackjack

DraftKings has taken the NJ sports betting scene by storm. It is responsible for the lion’s share of the online sports betting revenue.

The company was once only known for its daily fantasy sports contests. These days, however, it is operating as a full-fledged gaming company.

DraftKings added blackjack to its NJ sportsbook app in what is likely to be the first of many online casino games to come.

In an interview with NJGamblingSites.com, a DraftKings spokesman shared the company’s excitement about its early performance exceeding all expectations.

In that interview, we took notice of the word “preview.” The company has plans to add more casino-style games. Specifically, “The type of games you expect to find” at an NJ online casino.

5. It’s Golden Nugget’s world

We’ve mentioned Golden Nugget’s dominance in NJ’s online casino market a few times already in this article. Their position as market leader is so noteworthy, though, that it deserves its own spot on the list.

Now, that the other casinos launched live dealer games, look for Golden Nugget to continue to innovate as the company heads into the new year.

Its management team has been heralded as forward-thinking and risk-taking — two qualities that you don’t often find in the otherwise very conservative online gaming market.

One way it plans to stay one step ahead of the rest is by expanding its reach. The AC casino applied to offer online casino games in neighboring PA. It wasn’t the only casino to do so, however. MGM, owner of Borgata Casino, also applied.

The other casinos are probably taking notice that the top two Atlantic City casinos are not content with the status quo. Undoubtedly, launching in the nascent PA online casino market will help Golden Nugget look at the NJ market with fresh eyes.

Can it translate its NJ success to PA?

It seems somewhat unlikely because of the stiff competition from local casinos. But one thing is for sure: Golden Nugget will continue to drive the NJ market. And more than likely PA casinos will be taking notice.

Looking ahead to 2019

Innovation seems to be a constant theme when looking back throughout the year. There is no reason to think that the theme of innovation won’t carry into the new year, as well.

There is still room for more revenue growth, and that is evident by the fact that AC casinos continue to set records.

With new NJ casinos and PA online casinos entering the regional market, Atlantic City casinos will have no choice but to innovate. It will be fun to watch the wild ride continue.

Looking Back: Top 5 New Jersey Sports Betting Moments Of 2018

Choosing just five New Jersey sports betting memories of 2018 was difficult because there were so many and all of them deserve a place in the spotlight.

Sports betting fever is sweeping the nation, and New Jersey is leading the way.

Nothing this year has had more of an impact on NJ gambling sites as the legalization of sports betting.

Choosing the top five NJ sports betting moments was difficult because there were so many contenders.

In the end, we were forced to choose just five. Here are our top-five, headline-making sports betting stories for 2018.

1. NJ finally victorious in court

This may be the top moment in sports betting for more than just New Jersey.

On May 14, in a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court overturned the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA).

After several years and $8.6 million in legal fees, NJ finally won its hard-fought battle to bring legal sports betting to the Garden State.

At the heart of the decision was whether Congress could stop the state from enacting legislation to legalize sports betting. Justice Samuel Alito, in an opinion for the majority, said it couldn’t.

And the door to legal sports betting opened nationwide.

As a result of the ruling, several states made moves to offer sports betting in 2018, with the most attention (obviously) on New Jersey.

2. Chomping at the bit to accept sports wagers

Just a few days after the Supreme Court cleared the way for NJ sports betting, Monmouth Park announced it would be ready to take sports bets by the end of May.

Even though there was sports betting legislation already on the books in NJ, there were no regulations in place.

After Monmouth Park’s announcement, the legislature made it very clear that any NJ sportsbook that accepts a sports wager before regulations take effect will be penalized.

Regulations eventually passed the legislature, and Monmouth Park put its sportsbook launch plans into place. However, Gov. Phil Murphy took his time signing the legislation and Monmouth Park had to delay the opening — again.

Eventually, Murphy signed into law the regulations that would govern the NJ sports betting industry and Monmouth Park would get its day in the spotlight.

3. First sports wager

One month after the Supreme Court gave New Jersey and other states the green light to accept sports wagers, sports betting became a reality in the Garden State.

It was not the first state to implement it in the post-PASPA era, though, that was Delaware. Even so, the launch of NJ sports betting made most everyone forget that Delaware beat it to the finish line.

It was no surprise that the historic first bet took place at Monmouth Park Sportsbook by William Hill.

But sports bettors didn’t have to wait long for the first bet at an Atlantic City casino. Borgata held its ceremonial first bet just a few hours later.

In less than six months, nine retail sportsbooks began accepting sports wagers. Hard Rock Atlantic City is scheduled to open its sportsbook in early 2019.

That leaves Caesars as the only AC casino without a physical sports betting presence. At the same time, its parent company, Caesars Entertainment, has opened two other sportsbooks on the Boardwalk — one at Bally’s and the other at Harrah’s.

Since Monmouth Park accepted that first bet, NJ sportsbooks generated $73.4 million in sports betting revenue.

Considering NJ sports betting is still in its infancy, it explains why other states are starting to consider legal sports betting as a potential revenue (and tax) source.

4. Online sports betting stealing the show

Recent NJ sports betting revenue reports put the exclamation point on the power of mobile sports betting apps.

The latest in November reported nearly $331 million in sports bets across all sports betting operations. It showed a 29 percent increase from October. What is notable, however, is that 72.1 percent of that figure came from mobile and online sports betting.

Since DraftKings Sportsbook accepted the first mobile sports bet, seven new online sportsbooks launched creating that massive figure, including:

More than 53 percent of the $73.4 million in revenue the sports betting industry generated since its launch comes from online sports betting.

What makes that number even more impressive is that brick-and-mortar sportsbooks had a two-month head start. Additionally, there was only one online sportsbook in month three.

Undoubtedly, sports betting revenue will continue to dominate headlines in 2019.

5. Partnerships, sponsorships and agreements

Besides the overturning of PASPA, without which none of these headlines would be possible, partnerships have dominated the storylines.

The biggest stories from the second half of the year come from the plethora of partnerships and sponsorships between the major sports leagues, gaming platforms, software providers, and sportsbooks.

European sports betting platforms paired with casinos in record numbers to gain entry to the US sports betting market. Sports betting is thriving in Europe.

Bringing the experience of an established software provider on board allows a sportsbook to launch much faster than it would be able to otherwise.

The major sports leagues and its teams went on a partnership spree over the last few months. It paired with gaming companies to create a new revenue stream, which marked an about-face for the leagues’ initial opposition to sports betting.

MGM was the first gambling company to ink a deal with a major sports league. After announcing its landmark deal with the NBA, the company would go on to secure partnerships with MLB and the NHL.

Locally, the NJ Devils have capitalized on the opportunities from an active sports betting market. The Devils have secured partnerships with William Hill, FanDuel and Caesars.

As a result of the partnerships, the Prudential Center, home to the NJ Devils, offered space to both William Hill and Caesars for two sports-themed lounges.

The deals between the sports leagues and gaming companies are mostly:

Looking ahead to 2019

It is prudent to say that not only will NJ sports betting continue to grow, but expect it to continue to dominate NJ online gambling headlines.

New sportsbook apps will be making their way into the New Jersey market in 2019, including Unibet and bet365.

Plus, with the NFL playoffs set to get underway and the upcoming Super Bowl on tap in February, expect some massive numbers to start the year off right.

All of that aside, let’s not forget the fact that New Jersey will be the state to watch and emulate as the US sports betting industry continues to expand.

Hopes Are High For Atlantic City’s Revival, But Is It The Right Kind Of Optimism?

It has been a busy year for Altantic City and on the surface, it seems like all the optimism is warranted. AC is not out of the woods just yet, however.

The revitalization of Atlantic City has been a significant topic of discussion this year in the Garden State.

You can’t read a report about the resurgence of Atlantic City casinos without coming across the word “optimistic.”

Is it right to be optimistic about AC’s future?

It’s true, Atlantic City casinos continue to post record revenue numbers, and tourists are once again flocking to the Boardwalk. All indicators point to Atlantic City rebounding from its dark and storied recent past.

The reality of the situation, however, is that the optimistic sentiments everyone speaks of have only been in place a short time.

When you think about it, Atlantic City is still sort of on its second (or, maybe third) honeymoon. A lot has happened in the last six months to help fuel the “optimistic” theorists.

First, after a nine-year legal battle, New Jersey finally won the right to accept sports wagers. With a strong start, NJ sports betting continues to grow while exceeding expectations.

Second, immediately following the launch of sports betting, two new casinos opened their doors. Hard Rock Atlantic City and Ocean Resort Casino put people back to work and brought curious visitors back to the city.

Third, NJ gambling sites show no signs of slowing down. Golden Nugget continues to lead the pack into record territory on a regular basis.

AC casinos jockeying for position

On the surface, it seems like the optimism is warranted. Atlantic City is not out of the woods, however.

Rummy Pandit, executive director of the Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality & Tourism at Stockton University, believes we should be “cautiously optimistic.”

In an email to PlayNJ.com, Pandit elaborated:

“In the short term, the introduction of two new casino operations (Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City and Ocean Resort Casino), the launch of legal sports betting, and the continued expansion of internet gaming, have all contributed to volatility and growth in the local and regional market. Over time, these fluctuations will ease and resolve into a new market share.”

Eventually, the honeymoon period will wear off as Atlantic City casinos jockey for position and secure their market share.

Tony Marino, a local analyst in Atlantic City, is also cautious (there is that word again) about the long-term outlook. He spoke to the Press of Atlantic City about the subject:

“… The hoped-for expansion of Atlantic City’s tourist market demand will continue to lag considerably behind the expansion in casino supply triggered by the two new casinos. … If Atlantic City’s past history has taught us to be realistic, we should anticipate that total year-round demand may not be sufficient to keep all nine casinos profitable by 2020 and beyond.”

Is AC returning to its former glory? Maybe

Atlantic City is like a cat.

It has nine lives, which force casinos and businesses to continually overhaul its messaging and offerings.

“Like the casino operators, Atlantic City continues to rebrand and diversify its offerings, succeeding in differentiating itself as a true destination resort and reclaiming the title ‘America’s Playground,’” said Pandit.

It is certainly easier to attract tourists in good times.

That means aggressive business strategies during this period of optimism are crucial. Focusing on branding Atlantic City as a resort destination may be the key to sustainable growth.

Pandit believes Atlantic City casinos are up to the task:

“Atlantic City casino operators will continue to innovate and diversify their gaming and non-gaming offerings to remain competitive with local, regional and national trends; especially as neighboring casino markets expand.”

Optimism is good for an economy. When people are optimistic they play more, and they spend more.

That is a necessary component for Atlantic City’s future growth.

Cautious is the part of the equation that ensures the lessons from the past will prevent the same mistakes going forward.

“Cautiously optimistic,” as Pandit put it, is a more realistic approach as Atlantic City settles into its new normal.