North America’s most popular sporting event of the calendar year is fast approaching, as Dallas readies itself for Super Bowl Sunday. This could, however, be the day that the gambling industry’s love affair with the NFL ends – for the moment anyway.
The 2011 season is still up in the air as a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) has yet to be signed, meaning that if the season gets called off the Miami Dolphins will be able to say it would have been their year had there not been a work stoppage. In all seriousness, a state that has no NFL interest, team-wise, whatsoever that could feel the brunt of the work stoppage.
In Nevada, sports betting firms take around $2.5billion annually from a wide variety of sports, but the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that a season-long stoppage could cost the industry around $850million.
That figure is according to Wynn Las Vegas sports book and race director, John Avello, who also commented, “If there is a work stoppage, we’ll do something to try to make up some of the revenue. However, that’s some adjustment we’ll have to make. We’ve done it before when the NFL players went on strike or with the NHL lockout.”
Bettors may well go on to other sports were there to be a work stoppage, such as UK soccer, but the convenience of sports on your home soil are likely to still mean that there will be a significant loss.
If you see various members of the sports betting industry vigorously looking to the heavens and praying over the coming months this is likely going to be why. At the moment, though, both sides of the argument are showing that they CBA with the new CBA.