The Value of Official Betting

Official betting refers to a wager placed at a sportsbook based on statistics, results and other data that has been verified by the governing body of a sport. This type of betting has been growing in popularity as the US sports industry becomes more regulated and legal.

But sports leagues and gamblers have differing views on the value of official data. Mandating its use will likely not provide the integrity lawmakers seek in legal US sports betting. The data’s accuracy and availability also are under scrutiny. Ultimately, the value of official data will be determined by operators and their bettors.

A number of states are requiring sportsbooks to use official league data in live betting, including Illinois and Tennessee. But those mandates only apply to Tier 2 wagers, meaning the majority of bets can already be graded without the data. Moreover, some states, including Nevada, have no such requirement in place at all.

Currently, only the NBA has an agreement with a sports bookmaker to supply it with official data in real-time. The NFL and NHL haven’t made similar deals. And a bid to add such a requirement into a bill in Louisiana this year ended up sinking the legislation.

In addition, many states prohibit players and coaches from placing bets on the games they play or supervise. This is largely due to concerns about player health and safety. But the penalties can be stiff, even for minor violations. Last year, the NFL suspended Isaiah Rodgers and Rashod Berry indefinitely for placing bets while at team or league facilities. And last month, Alabama baseball coach Brad Bohannon was fired after being linked to suspicious betting activity.