Sports Betting: Counting the Cost – A Case Study

Most of the world’s population is under some form of lockdown order. The loss of freedom of movement includes total lockdown, where people are not allowed to leave their homes unless it is to buy food and other essential items. Additionally, other countries’ governments who have not implemented a strict lockdown order are encouraging their citizens to practice social distancing to try and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

One of the consequences of the worldwide lockdown order is that all sporting events across the globe have been postponed or canceled. Consequently, the sports betting industry has lost billions of US dollars. And, sportsbooks highlighted online sports review websites like are streamlining operations to cut costs and stay afloat while the world’s citizens get through this stressful time. 

Counting the cost: A case study

The annual March Madness American NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournament promotion was canceled in 2020; thus, costing the sports betting industry billions of dollars (USD). 2019 figures show that circa $8.5 billion (USD) was wagered on March Madness basketball games. And, circa 47 million Americans placed bets on these games. The average bet placed was $30. 

Although the losses incurred due to the cancellation of the 2020 March Madness promotion are substantial, this is only one event. 

Many online sportsbooks are also part of an online casino company that has a brick and mortar equivalent. The proceeds that the brick-and-mortar casinos generate for the overall company have been negated; thereby, costing the casino companies billions of USD. This is because their physical locations have been ordered to shut down by the world’s governments. 

A good example of the national shutdown of US brick-and-mortar casinos is the physical casinos that have Las Vegas, Nevada, USA addresses. They rely on the tourist trade for the bulk of their income. 

An interesting snippet to note is that the Nevada casinos were last forced to close on 25 November 1963 for the funeral of US President John F Kennedy.

The Las Vegas mayor is against the shutting down of the Las Vegas casinos as it will affect circa 3 million people who are employed directly and indirectly in the Las Vegas gambling industry as a result of 42 million annual tourists to the city. And, according to the American Gaming Association, the 30-day shutdown will cost casino companies up to $4.7 billion (USD) in lost economic activity.

Final thoughts 

Online gambling, especially fantasy sports betting, is providing entertainment and gambling opportunities for avid sports bettors. In summary, fantasy sports matches are a shortened virtual version of a physical sporting event. The wagering options are similar, if not the same. And, the overall aim of fantasy sports events is to provide an engaging, entertaining way for sports bettors to indulge in their hobby in a world where all physical sports are either postponed or canceled.