Las Vegas Scored Unexpectedly Good
This year’s World Cup 2022 in Qatar is taking place in the fall, which coincides with the NFL, basketball, hockey, and more. Some projections for the total betting handle considered that sharing the attention with so many other events in the sports calendar would affect how fans allocate their bets. Las Vegas is one of the places where the expectations were actually lower than the current betting activity.
A report by Associated Press (AP) cited Jay Kornegay – vice president of race and sports operations at Westgate LV Resort & Casino – and Adam Pullen – assistant director of trading at Caesars Sportsbook – who both commented on the overall picture of betting on the World Cup this year. While both recognized that changing the timing of the event would affect the bottom line, they differed in their cautiousness about expectations.
On the one hand, having the World Cup share the limelight with other sports definitely increases the importance of how sports fans prioritize and allocate their betting budget. On the other, sports betting in the US has grown considerably, compared to the last World Cup in 2018. Of course, there are many other factors that come into play, however, and the situation is much more complex.
Difficult to Predict How It Plays Out
One of the factors that affect projections is as old, as sports betting is – and, that’s whether your favorite team is still in the tournament. The US was eliminated in the World Cup in the round of 16 by the Netherlands, which naturally somewhat increased the desire American fans had to continue placing bets. While this is less of a concern for the more experienced or professional sports gamblers, the average fan is highly affected by this, as Kornegay touched on in AP’s report.
Of course, those who wanted to place bets, probably have anyway, and with the increase of states that have legalized sports betting, as well as a large increase in related content, the balance is shifted yet again and points to projections for increased total betting handle. The question is, however, whether – had the World Cup taken place during the regular period in the summer – these numbers wouldn’t have been even higher.
There is only one way to find out, of course, and that would most probably involve waiting for the World Cup to finish. Many agree that as the quarter-finals, semifinals, and grand final approach, gambling activity should hit its peak, further signaling how exactly betting on the World Cup is going to eventually pan out.