Under the Boredom of Corona Lies Hope for Sports Wagering SustainabilityPublished April 26, 2020 by Lee R
Esports and boutique simulated sports options were emerging before Corona, and can continue during.
It is no secret that there is not a lot to bet on these days.
But there are no less punters. Which means plenty of demand to fulfill.
Which also means extreme measures.
As one casino manger in Las Vegas maintains:
"If we can book anything bettable, somebody is going to bet on it.”
Some forms of betting which have sustained through the current situation, including virtual horse racing.
Other less popular forms of betting have been adapted, from events preceding Corona, including the KHL Russian Hockey League and Turkish and Mexican Football Leagues; where Tom Brady was going to sign, and weather conditions around the world—until the Nevada governor mandated the bastion of all sport betting to shut down its activities.
Actually Betting on the Weather
But punters still want to wager on something.
Costa Rica sportsbook Boveda began taking bets on maximum temperatures in cities around America.
A great barometer for the unlikely growth in betting on this relatively inane activity was a platform with what seemed like an odd product when it launched in mid-February: BetOnWeather.io, a site which initially started drawing roughly 10,000 visitors per week.
That figure has currently ballooned to over 100,000.
Fanduel's Political Betting
Meanwhile leading sportsbet site FanDuel has scraped the barrel with new punting options such as the "Survivor" reality TV series and the Democratic Party presidential candidate outcome, with the political betting drawing over 55,000 entrants.
Other more obscure offerings by DraftKings not worth mentioning fall to the wayside in light of a more intriguing option: betting on eSports.
The DFS Phoenix of eSports
Interest in eSports daily fantasy has also increased, with Draftkings reporting League of Legends daily fantasy unique paid actives up 1,050% and entry fees increasing by 707% week over week since March 13.
DFS' Weak Simulation Sister
FanDuel is further offering NBA Sim Sports for fantasy players, substituting randomly generated points drawn from NBA games over the course of the 2019-2020 season for live daily fantasy statistics.
Unsurprisingly, but no less importantly, interest in simulated games is up. But experts still view the idea of betting on simulated games—as well as selling them to the public—as "thorny" at best.
Keeping It Real
Obviously, the pragmatic view is best here: simulated sports are unlikely to catch on permanently ever, even with the most rabid of gamblers.
The Solution to Sustainability
But the answer to the conundrum of the times still remains relatively clear.
There are no logistical barriers to eSports continuing unabated; further, there were signs emerging pre-Corona of the popularity of simulated events with professionals competing, such as in iRacing.
SO, while there is no punting substitute for live sports, the potential for punters to adapt to high quality simulated events and eSports seems realistic for now. How long—who's to say? But in this day and age, everything has to be taken in increments.