With the rise in popularity and legitimacy for large esports events like ESL and the Overwatch League, a new market has emerged on the scene: esports gambling.
Like traditional sports, esports have all the moving parts required for a healthy betting scene. You’ve got intense match-ups and crazy possibilities. Rivalries and high stakes action. If you’ve sat and watched an Overwatch League game with your friends, you’ve no doubt said something like:
“Hey, I bet Jjonak will get a triple kill this fight,” or
“There’s no way the Dragons win today.”
Why not put your money where your mouth is?
A plethora of sites have stepped up to fill this betting gap – many of the best can be found online here. You can see the spread for the Overwatch League Grand Finals, place your bet on who will win (and by how much) and maybe make a little money. What’s not to love?
Bet On It
The path that led to esports gambling was not a smooth one. Bookers had to take to the Supreme Court in a six-year legal battle to overturn a ruling made in 1992. Traditional sports officials were strongly against esports gambling as a whole. Lucky for esports fans, the Supreme Court saw things a little differently.
“Congress can regulate sports gambling directly, but if it elects not to do so, each State is free to act on its own,” the court wrote in its opinion. “Our job is to interpret the law Congress has enacted and decide whether it is consistent with the Constitution. [The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act] is not.”
Once betting sites were allowed to flourish after the ruling, they still faced unique difficulties. It’s tough to establish odds on a completely new market while still making everyone money. Sites like Unikrn have established these books almost entirely from scratch. While it wasn’t easy, these sites have managed to smooth things out enough for the casual bettor. That means you can approach the normally fickle world of gambling with a lot less trepidation. That’s definitely a good thing!
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Featured Image Courtesy of Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment