LAS VEGAS ( Associated Press) – The World Cup may be the world’s biggest sporting event, but this fall the United States competes with a full sporting calendar.
Bookies directors in Las Vegas did not expect betting on the 2018 World Cup in Russia to exceed the usual summer. And they were right with the Qatar incident.
Yet in November and December in the United States, the World Cup has had a noticeable impact, a bigger one than expected in Las Vegas, the center of home betting.
Jay Kornege, Westgate Las Vegas’ vice president of operations, compares summer World Cup games to the level of NFL matchups. This year has been more like college basketball.
Kornage admitted, “We knew before the World Cup and it would be in the fallout of sharing the stage with American football, basketball and hockey, that it was going to take a little bit of the headlines away from the World Cup.” “Usually they only have the main stage in the summer. This year is different and it definitely shows.
Adam Pullen, assistant editor at Caesars Sportsbook, thinks it’s hard to tell what the difference is between 2018 and 2022 as more states legalize sports betting.
“It’s comparing apples to oranges, but at least we’ll see how it compares and how drastic the difference is,” Pullen said.
Kornege and Pullen said they expected bets to rise as the knockout stage progresses, even though the United States were eliminated in the round of 16 and Mexico, another betting favorite, before the group stage. Failed to create it.
And why he believes the World Cup exceeded expectations, with Kornege admitting that great press coverage has been a factor in getting bookies excited.
And that the American team played well enough to advance to the round of 16 is another big factor, Kornege and Polen said.
According to FanDuel Brazil is the favorite to win the tournament at +200, with France at +490 and Argentina at +550.