Most Popular Bookies in United States

Online sports betting in the USA has been scaling to new heights over the last few years. The revenues generated from sports betting are a good indicator of the industry's growing popularity. For example, sports betting generated more than three billion dollars within the first ten months of 2021.

That was 230 percent more than what was generated within the same period of the previous year. Several US states have embraced sports betting over the last few years, highlighting the growing popularity. One of the top reasons online sports betting is immensely popular in the US is the sports industry is booming. A majority of the adults enjoy watching sports, with the country hosting some of the best leagues in the world.

Most Popular Bookies in United States
United States sportsbetting

United States sportsbetting

The fans can thus analyze the games critically and make informed predictions on which they place wagers. The stakes help make the games more interesting as the fans have something to gain or lose based on the outcomes of the sports.

Another top reason for the growing popularity is increased access to online betting platforms. The number of sports betting sites is quite high, with almost all of them being accessible via mobile devices. Punters can thus place their bets at any time and from anywhere. The online sports betting providers also employ effective marketing strategies, such as offering free bonuses, attracting even more punters.

United States sportsbetting
History of betting in the USA

History of betting in the USA

Modern sports betting in the USA began during the early 19th century. At that time, punters used to place wagers on horse racing, which was the most popular sport in the country. In 1876, professional baseball was established through the National League.

The league helped push sports betting to the forefront so that it even began affecting the games. There were cases of teams throwing games because of gambling. Consequently, the general attitude towards sports betting became poor. People placed sports bets primarily for entertainment purposes only.

During the early 20th century, sports betting started to regain popularity. More sports came into the fold, which contributed to the increased popularity. The 1920s became known as the Golden Era of sports. College basketball and football ended up becoming some of the most popular sports betting options.

Notably, no sports-specific betting legislation was adopted in the US during that time. It was until 1931 when gambling was legalized in Nevada. All the other states remained quiet on the matter. And in 1961, the Interstate Wire Act was passed, forcing sports wagering to become more localized in most regions. Las Vegas, Nevada, began to be seen as the only place punters could bet on sports legally.

Sports betting in the late 19th century

Sports betting was not a big industry in the US until the 1970s. That was when congress reduced the sports betting tax that bookmakers had to pay. More states also began legalizing sports betting. Sports lotteries also started becoming popular across the country. Delaware, Oregon Sports Action, and The Montana were the most popular lotteries at the time.

In 1992, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was enacted, banning all sports betting forms. That was with an exception to four states that had already legalized gambling. The Act limited sports betting until 2018 when the Supreme Court overturned it.

History of betting in the USA
Betting nowadays in the USA

Betting nowadays in the USA

The sports betting industry in the US now appears a lot different than it did a few decades ago. The main differentiating factor was the introduction of online sports betting, which further extended to mobile betting.

It is now possible for anyone in the country above 18 years to bet on virtually any professional sport. All it takes is registration to an online casino for a punter to start betting on sports. More punters also have mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, which means they can easily access the sports betting platforms.

There has also been an increase in the number of states that have legalized sports betting. That means punters can now place their wagers without dread. Currently, 26 states have various forms of legal sports betting markets. There are also hundreds of bookies that now allow US punters to register and bet legally. Most of them are offshore, but some are based within the country.

Future of sports betting in the USA

Betting on different sports is more than likely going to continue growing in popularity in the US. For starters, more states will legalize betting on sports. However, there are also chances that new laws might be introduced to limit the type and extent to which the punters can bet.

That will likely affect online betting the most, given that over 90% of all sports bets are made through online bookies. The number of bookies allowing US sports punters to join and bet will increase to take advantage of the increasing popularity of betting. The increased competition might lead to numerous innovative features offered by the bookies.

Betting nowadays in the USA
States that allow sports betting

States that allow sports betting


Nevada was the first state to make sports betting legal in the US. It has a long history of gambling and is currently still one of the top gambling destinations in the US. The types of wagering permitted include mobile and in-person, with no notable prohibitions.


Delaware legalized single-game betting on the 5th of June 2018, but only in specified locations. It also allowed expanded sports wagering options in various other land-based casinos and online. The only notable restriction is that punters cannot bet on in-state college teams' games.

New Jersey

Sports betting became legal in New Jersey on the 11th of June 2018 when Phil Murphey signed a sports betting bill that supported it. The law permits both mobile and in-person sports betting. However, the law prohibits punters from betting on in-state college teams and college sports events and tournaments held in the state.


Mississippi had already enacted new sports betting laws in 2017, even before the ruling of the Supreme Court. However, the new rules took effect only after the landmark ruling, on the 1st of August 2018. The law allows punters to make sports bets in person, with no clear provisions made for online betting.

West Virginia

West Virginia was the fifth state to legalize regulated sports betting in the US. A new bill was passed in 2018, which permitted both in-person and mobile sports betting. The bill also declared the West Virginia Lottery Commission the chief regulator of sports betting.

New Mexico

There are no specific bills passed in New Mexico to legalize sports betting. However, the state permits all forms of class three gaming. Class three gaming includes all sports betting and pari-mutuel wagering as federal laws. Punters are prohibited from betting on in-state college teams.


Governor Tom Wolf signed the Pennsylvania sports betting bill in 2017 as part of a legislation push that included DFS and online poker. The bill became effective immediately after the Supreme Court ruling in 2018. In-person and online sports betting are both legal in the state.

Other states where sports betting is legal include Rhode Island, Arkansas, New York, Iowa, Oregon, Indiana, Illinois, New Hampshire, Michigan, Montana, Colorado, Washington DC, Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina, Wyoming, Washington, Arizona, South Dakota, Connecticut, and North Dakota.

States that allow sports betting
USA players' favorite games

USA players' favorite games

Sports make a significant part of American culture. The citizens are extremely supportive of all mainstream games where they usually place bets. However, specific sports stand out among the rest in terms of popularity, such as those highlighted below.

American Football

American football is ranked the most popular spectators sport in the US. The most popular American football league is the National Football League (NFL), with 32 franchises competing.

The NFL usually gets the highest TV ratings of all the sports in the US, especially during Super Bowl. The league also has the highest average attendance of all the sports leagues in the world. Other American football leagues are also quite popular, including college football.


Basketball is another popular sport in the United States, invented back in 1891 in Springfield, Massachusetts. The top basketball league in the country is the National Basketball Association (NBA). Regarding revenues, the NBA is ranked at third place. Basketball is also the most played team sport in the US when amateur levels are considered.


Baseball was the first sport to turn professional in the US. Currently, the highest baseball level in the world is Major League Baseball, which is usually played between the National League and the American League winners. Baseball has been played professionally for many years now, attracting a considerable following.

USA players' favorite games
Payment methods in the USA

Payment methods in the USA

Punters in the USA have an extensive list of online betting payment methods on their hands. Some popular payment options are highlighted below.

Credit and Debit Cards

Statistics show credit and debit cards are the most commonly used online deposit options. The main reason behind that is most Americans already have credit and debit cards, making it the most accessible choice. Making deposits using credit cards is also quite fast and easy. Users only need to enter the card details and confirm the transaction.


E-wallets are quite popular in the US. They allow bettors to withdraw or make deposits easily and from any place if they can connect to the internet. E-wallets also offer good security when all relevant precautions are observed.

Mobile payment services

Apple Pay is another option that has gained substantive popularity in recent times. The mobile payment service allows punters to make deposits, but it does not support withdrawals. Its use is limited to users with iOS devices, which is quite a good number in the US. Android users can use Android Pay, which works almost similarly to Apple Pay.

Payment methods in the USA


Is betting on sports legal in the United States?

At the federal level, sports betting is legal in the USA. However, there are several states where all types of sports betting are still illegal.

Can US punters bet on sports that are not popular in the country?

US punters can bet on virtually any sport played professionally anywhere globally. All they need to do is find a bookmaker that offers the sports market in which they want to bet. The options include offshore-betting sites that accept US bettors.

Is there a strategy for winning sports bets?

No strategy can guarantee any punter of winning a sports bet. However, numerous strategies can be used to improve winning chances, most of which revolve around picking the right odds.

Can punters bet on sports after kickoff?

Various online sports betting sites allow punters to place live bets up to a few minutes before the game ends. However, that is not usually offered for all games, and odds typically vary continuously throughout the game.

Do punters lose money if a game is abandoned before it ends?

That usually depends on the terms and conditions of the betting site used. In most cases, the bets will be canceled except when a competent authority issues a definitive result of the abandoned game.