The United States gambling market: Post PASPA

The United States of America changed the course of sports betting history forever on May 14, 2018. The Supreme Court disordered the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA), putting closure on a 36-year term of sports betting prohibition for the majority of the U.S.

In 1992, PASPA was authorized at the hand of Congress, condemning sports betting in most regions of the United States. Nevada, the focal point of U.S. gambling, alongside Delaware, Montana, and Oregon, gained exemption from the ban.

The legal stance of Casino gaming has made massive expansions throughout the U.S. between 1992/2018. Unfortunately, the consequence of PASPA saw the thriving gambling markets of places like Pennsylvania and New Jersey lost their rights to provide sports wagering within their stateside retail casinos.

After years of court hearings and debate, the Supreme Court administered PASPA as unlawful on May 14, 2018, denouncing ten years of legal disputes against the bill.

Since the demise of PASPA, the United States has flourished a sports betting boom that continues to evolve to this day. One of the nation’s leading states in the sports betting market, New Jersey, returned $6 billion in 2020.

Three years following the end of PASPA in 2021, more than 50% of American states provide legal sports betting. From around 30 states and Washington D.C., those supplying online sports betting are also growing at an unprecedented rate, allowing customers to place sports wagers on their computers or mobile devices.

Online betting has fuelled the massive surge throughout the sports wagering industry, as spearheads of the markets in America like Nevada, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey take more than 90% of their wagers from online betting applications.

Online sports wagering exceeds the initial forecast

As of 2022, 30 American states offer legal sports betting, 18 of which provide online wagering in some form. New Jersey, a leading player that endorsed the push to revoke PASPA, devolved into the first state to offer legalization in the post-PASPA generation, introducing a retail sportsbook in June 2018.

In the following month of July, New Jersey launched its online sportsbooks, opening the floodgates to what eventually transitioned into the most significant sports wagering market in the U.S.

Figures from 2020 revealed that New Jersey produced over $5.5 billion in online bets. Competing states also delivered unprecedented online handles in 2020, including Pennsylvania (3 billion), Illinois (1.8 billion), and Indiana (1.77 billion).

Just when the market looked at its peak, 2021 numbers demolished those of 2020, and the aforementioned states, including new players to the game like New York, are already on trend for another record-breaking year in 2022. Leading the way are brands such as BetMGM, BetRivers, BetMGM, DraftKings, and FanDuel, alongside industry comparison sites like – they provide consumers with the most comprehensive reviews on gambling operators’ games and products.

The U.S. States where sports betting is legal in 2022

The U.S. States Where Sports Betting is Legal in 2022


Arizona’s sports betting bill passed in April 2021, and with the legality of online wagering, the state opened the country’s first in-stadium sportsbook.

Particular sportsbooks began business on the NFL opening week of 2021, and several others followed in the coming months.


In-person sports wagering has been legal in Arkansas since 2019. And three years later, ahead of the highly anticipated March Madness 2022 tournament, mobile betting sites and apps have received the court’s approval to begin business.


Colorado’s initial retail and online bets began in unison during 2020 and have become a significant player in the industry, with top brands flocking to the state since its inception.


Connecticut reached its first deal in 2021, which allowed stateside mobile sports wagering alongside a plethora of retail sportsbooks.


Delaware became the second state to legalize a sports wager, getting there before N.J. by a couple of weeks after PASPA was removed in May 2018.

Unfortunately for bettors, the state’s lottery prevents online betting; therefore, placing bets requires a visit to a retail sportsbook.


While Florida isn’t officially on the list of states with legal betting, it did enter the market in November 2021. However, four weeks after its operation and first legal wager, it was put on hold, seeking further legislation.

A revisiting period to legal wagering is expected in 2022.


March 2020 saw Illinois’ first retail sportsbook open its door, with online wagering shortly coming after in June.

Unlike most states, customers wanting to use the online betting services must first sign up at a retail sportsbook before being given the option.


Indiana has been live and healthy within the legal sports betting market since September 2019.


Accepting their first bet in August 2019, mobile and in-person betting has grown exponentially since its birth despite owning one of the smaller populations.


Retail sportsbooks launched in October 2021, and this year (2022) saw the launch of Louisiana’s online betting system.


Retail sportsbooks have been active in Maryland since December 2021, and although online wagering has been legalized, their expected 2022 debut is yet to release an official date.


In-person wagering began in March 2020, and Michigan’s online services followed suit in the first quarter of 2021.


Wasting no time, Mississippi began operating its in-person sportsbooks on August 1, 2018.

Online wagering is possible but very limited, as customers can only place bets inside a casino.


Montana received its first legal bet in March 2020, but government limitations have only allowed the state lottery to obtain a license.


With no introduction needed, Nevada has spearheaded in-person wagering since the dawn of time. With that said, they have a lot to learn about online betting.

New Hampshire

Mobile wagering began in December 2019. A small number of retail locations can be found, but serious competition will come from Massachusetts if online betting is launched.

New Jersey 

New Jersey can be thanked for the downfall of PASPA, and as the third overall state to receive a legal wager, they’re a prominent player in the legalized sports betting world.

New Mexico

While in-person wagers can be placed at the handful of retail sportsbooks available, New Mexico has yet to introduce online betting.

New York

After a highly anticipated wait, New York took its first online wager in January 2022. Retail sportsbooks were previously available but rarely utilized, and now, New Jersey has a serious competitor in its neighboring state.

North Carolina 

North Carolina opened their retail sportsbooks in March 2021. The state Governor has shown his support for online betting, but no official date has been given.

North Dakota

In-person sportsbooks launched throughout 2021 in North Dakota. However, a 2021 bill to pass online wagering missed the mark by a handful of votes, meaning that lawmakers could well return to legalize online betting in 2022.


Oregon is limited to placing bets with the state’s lottery app as of 2019. A small number of retail sportsbooks are available in casinos. However, the lottery app made a deal with DraftKings in 2022 to oversee their online wagers.


As one of the first, Pennsylvania opened its first retail sportsbook in 2018, with a digital launch soon following in 2019.

As one of the most prominent players in the market, multiple betting options are available in the state from in-person and online.

Rhode Island 

Rhode Island began taking legal bets in 2018 at retailers, and the online services of William Hill soon followed.

South Dakota

South Dakota opened their first sportsbook in September 2021 but is still without the option for online wagering.


Without a brick-and-mortar casino in their state, Tennessee is the sole location that offers mobile-only sports wagering.


January 2021 saw Virginia accept their first legal online sports bet.


Since March 2020, sports betting has been legalized in Washington, with its first bet taking place in September 2021.

Online sports betting is possible, but only within a casino.

Washington D.C.

D.C., while not considered a U.S. state, opened its first retail sportsbook in 2020. And while mobile betting is possible, wagers can only be placed inside their William Hill location.

West Virginia

Mobile wagering has been live in West Virginia since August 2019, with the option of in-person betting at select venues.


Wyoming is the second state that offers online wagering without any retail sportsbooks. Their first online bet was received in September 2021.

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