Are Daily Fantasy Leagues Igniting the Sports Gambling Fire?

Let me preface this by making it perfectly clear that I am in no way advocating sports gambling or the use of and daily fantasy league services. However, this is a topic that is heavily discussed in many communities and is at the forefront of conversations with the beginning of football season upon us.

The diversity of opinions on the topic of sport gambling is fascinating. The truth is, almost each argument for or against it make complete sense. 

The Case for Legalizing Sports Gambling

In one corner, you have those in favor of legalizing sports gambling. The arguments that continue to circulate in the topic of conversation are: 

“It is already being done whether it is legal or not. Why not make it legal and implement the proper regulations?”

There is absolute truth to this statement. According to a story from Washington Post, around $4 billion was gambled on sports legally in Las Vegas, while up to $380 billion was estimated to have been wagered illegally. Through local bookmakers, offshore online betting sources, and others Americans are able to bet on anything they want pertaining to sports.

“It would eliminate the corruption that is currently attached to betting on sports.”

We all see the movies. Those involved in the sports gambling world have this aura of ‘sleaziness’. While what you see in the movies does not always portray what happens in the real world (just in case you didn’t know that), unregulated betting does have its issues. With it being legalized, everything can be regulated and the process can be handled correctly.

“We are missing out on an opportunity to help boost the economy.”

Our economy could always use a little boost. Many believe that sports gambling could be a part of the solution, stating that there is an opportunity to generate tax revenue for local and state governments as well as provide job opportunities.

Keep it Illegal

On the flip-side, there are a large number who stand behind the idea to keep sports gambling illegal and are making their own case:

“Legalizing sports gambling will create more problem gamblers.”

There is no denying that a gambling addiction can ruin lives. That is something we have to be blunt with. Many who are opposed to making it legal when it comes to sports believe that it will provide another realm for this to happen. Associated with this issue, some believe it would allow for younger individuals to develop gambling habits of their own. If you or someone you know are dealing with a gambling problem, please visit this site for a guide on overcoming this addiction. 

“It could increase the opportunity for a ‘fixed game’.”

Consumers don’t necessarily trust any type of system, even if it is regulated. We have learned our lesson a few times. With so much money to be made with legalized sports betting, who is to say that some adjustments to the game won’t be made to make this profit? This is an issue that those who are opposed fear. If this situation were to occur if it became legal, things could get messy quickly. Throughout the history of major sports, famous players, coaches and even referees have already been found to be involved in fixing a game. 

Have We Taken the First Step Towards Legalizing Betting on Sports?

If you haven’t heard of the new ‘daily fantasy leagues’ craze, you might just be living under a rock. Just turn on your television or radio and I can all but guarantee that you will hear one of their commercials within 10 minutes. As a sports fan myself, they are very enticing. 

I play fantasy sports religiously, and not just fantasy football, either. Sometimes I even dabble in some fantasy Nascar. The fun competition between friends allowing you to bask in your glorious victory makes it all worthwhile. In fact, I would love to call out a few individuals out that I have consistently dominated in fantasy football, but I will refrain from further embarrassing those poor souls. They have already gone through enough. 

Fantasy sports are an integral part of how fans, and even those who aren’t, interact with the sports world today. Just last year the NYDailyNews.com reported that over 41 million people played fantasy sports. This has brought on a whole new dynamic known as daily fantasy sports leagues. This is when you can play fantasy sports anytime you want by submitting a new lineup every day with an opportunity to earn money. Sounds great, but many believe it’s the first form of legitimate sports gambling and could be the starting point to making all betting legal. 

The players in the game, DraftKings and FanDuel, have carved out their spot in the daily fantasy sports world. According to the New York Business Journal, FanDuel saw $621.7 million in player entry fees this past year from over 1 million paid users. DraftKings also experienced a large amount of entry fees reaching $304 million from its users as well as other impressive numbers that can be found here.

With their rapid growth, many advocates for legalized sports betting point to these companies as models of how betting can be regulated, seeing it as the launching point for ending the ban on sports gambling and having a proper system in place. 

We want to here your thoughts on this topic. Do you believe sports gambling should be legal? Why? Do you participate in daily fantasy sports leagues? Can sports betting actually be regulated? 

Leave your thoughts and comments below.