New Jersey Tops Nevada in 2020 Sports Betting Handle

    • Nevada's 2020 handle totaled $4.3 billion, the lowest total in the state since 2015
    • The state relies heavily on tourism to fuel its stream of bettors.

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Nevada has officially been overtaken as the mecca of sports betting. New Jersey is the new top dog. 

With the rise of mobile betting, coupled with the pandemic, Nevada lost its heavily tourism-based stream of bettors. While mobile betting is legal in the state, it requires in-person registration — plus, Nevada’s population is less than half that of the Garden State.

New Jersey, which legalized sports betting in 2018, beat Nevada in money handled in every month of 2020. 

Last year, New Jersey handled $6 billion in sports bets while Nevada handled $4.3 billion, the lowest total in the state since 2015. Pennsylvania, Illinois and Indiana finished next in total handle for the year.

  • New Jersey’s mobile betting numbers soared in 2020, with about 90% of bets placed with on-the-go options. 
  • In Nevada, mobile bets accounted for closer to 60% of the total handle.

But Nevada isn’t going anywhere when it comes to big games and celebrations. Las Vegas is still a premier destination for sports bettors during events like March Madness and the Super Bowl. 

Nevada’s fall from the top is less about a lack of allure to the state, and more about the evolving market nationwide.