The US Supreme Court is only but a few weeks away from ruling on New Jersey’s challenge to a law overturn the existing sports betting legislation, just in time for the America Gaming Association to release some jaw-dropping figures on illegal sports betting.
The AGA estimates that only around 3% of the expected $10bn set to be wagered on the upcoming 2018 NCAA men's basketball tournament will be bet legally, through Nevada sports books.
This minuscule proportion of bets placed legally only amounts to approximately $300m.
Americans illegally bet at least $150bn annually on sports, using bookies, illegal offshore websites, or through sports pools such as popular March Madness basketball bracket pools.
Geoff Freeman, President and CEO of the American Gaming Association comments: "Our current sports betting laws are so out of touch with reality that we're turning tens of millions of Americans into criminals for the simple act of enjoying college basketball.”
At present, there are 48 pieces of sports betting legislation active in 18 states, as legislatures across the country prepare to take advantage of this opportunity the repeal could offer.
“The failed federal ban on sports betting has created an illegal, unregulated sports betting market that offers zero consumer protections and generates zero revenue for state and tribal governments,” Freeman adds.
"As the Supreme Court considers the constitutionality of PASPA, AGA is focused on working with all stakeholders to put the illegal market out of business and enable a safe, legal way for American consumers to participate in next year's office pool without fear of prosecution."