The National Basketball Association (NBA) has announced they’ll be taking a different approach to legalized sports betting moving forward. One of the biggest sports organizations in the world intends to fully support those lobbying to change existing regulations.
Previously, the NBA had announced they’d land their support to legalized sports betting. However, the organization had no plans to play an active role in these changes. However, they’ve decided to take a different approach now.
Regulations as the Right Way
According to NBA’s Vice President Dan Spillane, they don’t believe that starting off with illegal betting is the right way to go. However, with New Jersey case to overturn PASPA pending before the Supreme Court, there could finally be a legal framework established.
Just last month, the NBA joined with the NHL and NFL to protest in front of the US Supreme Court. These organizations were supporting the current legislation that only allows a few states to offer sports betting. Currently, these are Nevada, Montana, Delaware, and Oregon.
However, the climate could change significantly if the Supreme Court decides in favor of New Jersey.
A Lot on the Stake
These days, the Supreme Court of the United States will be looking into the lawsuit filed by the state of New Jersey. The suit asks the court to overturn PASPA – Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act. This law was enacted in 1992 and it made sports betting illegal across the States. Only the few mentioned states were exempt.
Back in 2012, the Garden State held a referendum, which supported legalized sports betting. However, their attempts to set up actual betting services faced a sharp opposition. One of the strongest opponents was the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association). This is the organization that stands on the other side of the lawsuit submitted by New Jersey.
The NCAA managed to get an injunctive action against New Jersey last year before the US Court of Appeals. Back then, Governor Christie claimed the PASPA was unconstitutional, but his claims fell on deaf ears with the court.
Hence, Christie decided to take things to the next instance. The Supreme Court hearing is scheduled for December 4th, and it should bring about much more clarity. If the appeal is successful, professional sports associations, such as NBA, could openly discuss future prospects.
It is unlikely there’ll be an official decision before the summer of 2018. However, the NBA has decided to remain open to all options. As Spillane explained, this has now become a practical discussion, because not all the leagues are against regulated sports betting anymore.
It will be a slow process, but the one that could radically change the future of the gambling and sports betting industry in the States. If New Jersey wins, it will set a precedent for all states to come up with their own regulations regarding the matter. That could lead to legislation on the federal level, which is the outcome the NBA hopes for.