And the award for betting on the Oscars in New Jersey goes to… no one?
Just a few days after regulators gave the green light for legal Oscars betting in the state, all odds on the Academy Awards were taken off the board by NJ sportsbook operators.
It is the first time legal betting on the Oscars had taken place anywhere in the US. The Oscars will be awarded later this month.
Oscars betting, we hardly knew you
Sources tell Legal Sports Report that the NJ Department of Gaming Enforcement told all operators booking the Oscars that they should pull their odds from their apps. LSR has reached out to the DGE for clarification on the about-face.
Why did Oscars betting come down?
There is no indication of why DGE made the request, or if the sportsbooks will ultimately be allowed to book the Oscars.
Earlier this week, the DGE sent an email to operators giving the go-ahead:
After reviewing the relevant information on integrity issues, the Division has determined that pre-event betting on The Oscars can be offered for this year only.
The quick change of heart is difficult to explain. One possible explanation would be that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences — which puts on the awards — asked NJ not to take bets.
Betting on the Oscars already goes on at many European sportsbooks as well as offshore sportsbooks that serve the US illegally. Nevada, which has had sports wagering for decades, has never booked the Oscars.