Official betting is a market that is settled based on official results from governing bodies. If a market is not updated with the official result, any bets placed will be voided. This doesn’t include markets where there is no official score such as first goalscorer bets. Pending bets remain in play until the next scoring drive, unless they are on a specific event such as a sack, botched punt or interception.
The NFL’s Teflon coating has protected it from the many allegations of match-fixing that have plagued other sports. But with legalized sports gambling now a reality in most US states, the leagues are fighting hard for their piece of the pie. Official data mandates have become a major front in the fight to shape state and federal policy.
During the debate over PASPA, the NBA, MLB and NHL each submitted proposals for sports betting that included an integrity fee. This fee is an extra charge on all wagers that pays a share of the profits to the leagues. The leagues have argued that integrity fees will prevent match-fixing and other forms of criminal activity. But critics say this fee will actually make the industry less fair to consumers.
Sportsbook operators are also battling with players’ unions over the ability to collect and monetize biometric data from professional and college athletes. These efforts have been met with a wave of resistance from player associations, and lawmakers in Illinois and Tennessee included a provision within their sports betting laws that prohibits the use of such data without consent from a players’ union.
Another area of contention is the amount paid for official data, with sources within the industry pegging this at 0.25% of total handle. This is significantly higher than the prices charged for unofficial data. The problem is that the inflated price of official data artificially constrains the market.
In addition to a variety of markets for individual events, official betting allows bettors to place wagers on team and player props. These bets are based on a number of factors, including whether the team or player performs better in certain situations. Prop bets are available on a wide range of topics, including player injuries, matchups and other in-game events.
Pennsylvania was among the first states to offer legal sports betting following the Supreme Court’s PASPA ruling. Retail sportsbooks opened in September 2018, and online betting sites began offering services in November of that year. West Virginia also jumped on the bandwagon, with SugarHouse and BetRivers going live in 2021 and DraftKings and FanDuel following suit. Vermont has since approved sports betting, but it only takes place at licensed online and mobile operators. BetLucky was a short-lived mobile option in the state.