Hardwood Hardship Hurts Nevada Sportsbooks In December

Written By Matthew Waters on January 27, 2022
Nevada sportsbooks

Nevada sportsbooks took more than $1 billion in handle for the third straight month. Yet even that volume could not salvage the month for sportsbooks.

Silver State sportsbooks were shellacked by bettors in December, holding only 1.6% of the $1.014 billion bet. That translated to $16 million in sports betting revenue and nearly $1.1 million in taxes.

December’s totals pushed Nevada to $8.1 billion in handle, $445.1 million in revenue and $30 million in taxes for 2021. Those are all annual records by far. NV sportsbooks previously never topped more than $5.3 billion while revenue maxed out at $329.1 million, both coming in 2019.

Nevada sportsbooks hit hard on basketball

The last full month of regular-season NFL betting meant football remained the most-bet sport in December, but sportsbooks really felt the pinch from basketball.

There was $477.1 million bet on football with operators holding 3.6%, or $16.9 million in revenue.

Basketball’s hold was much worse at just 0.7%. That meant books made only $2.9 million in revenue on $408.7 million in bets.

The rest of the categories all lost money for sportsbooks in December:

  • Parlay cards: -$1.9 million in revenue
  • Baseball: -$1.3 million in revenue
  • Hockey: -$606,000 in revenue
  • Other: -$57,000 in revenue

Revenue down across US in November

Sports bettors across the US in December won back some of the record revenue they gave away to sportsbooks in November. Revenue from the 19 reported states is down 51.7% from November.

StateDec. 2021 revenuevs. Dec. 2020vs. Nov. 2021
New Jersey$59,047,673-11.1%-48.6%
Pennsylvania$37,953,474-16.3%-55.3%
Michigan$35,870,4371804.7%-38.6%
Indiana$25,772,4286.0%-45.9%
Tennessee$24,600,00077.0%-33.3%
Nevada$15,960,000-61.2%-77.8%
Iowa$13,371,19777.4%-32.3%
Connecticut$8,879,733N/A-46.7%
Louisiana$4,380,930N/A-22.9%
West Virginia$4,144,869-35.9%-41.7%
Mississippi$3,238,730-58.3%-66.0%
New Hampshire$2,645,934-41.7%-57.1%
Oregon$2,597,503-14.9%-41.3%
Wyoming$813,504N/A-40.3%
New York$764,614-66.1%-80.7%
Montana$643,0008.1%-26.8%
Arkansas$47,599-95.5%-97.1%
South Dakota$10,306N/A-86.2%
Delaware$-968,520-131.3%-121.2%
Total$239,773,4114.6%-51.7%

That significant drop is despite total handle being down only 2.7% from November. It is up 69.2% from last December.

StateDec. 2021 handlevs. Dec. 2020vs. Nov. 2021
New Jersey$1,229,561,89123.4%-2.3%
Nevada$1,014,986,61872.5%-6.5%
Pennsylvania$750,388,69636.8%-1.5%
Michigan$514,630,5365194.3%2.8%
Indiana$463,015,61347.9%-0.1%
Tennessee$341,800,00088.9%-6.5%
Iowa$266,518,049154.3%-7.2%
Connecticut$150,073,755N/A13.9%
New Hampshire$86,449,52867.4%3.9%
West Virginia$57,274,811-18.3%-32.0%
Mississippi$56,839,7432.8%-6.2%
Louisiana$39,495,003N/A42.9%
Oregon$33,743,75425.0%3.3%
New York$21,129,98113.7%-1.8%
Delaware$12,638,955-19.5%-18.8%
Wyoming$12,285,012N/A12.0%
Arkansas$7,794,29221.5%-7.0%
Montana$4,920,000-11.7%8.6%
South Dakota$675,312N/A-5.9%
Total$5,064,221,54969.2%-2.7%

When will full mobile come to Nevada sportsbooks?

The mobile channel fared worse than retail sportsbooks. While $765 million in bets were placed on mobile – 75.4% of the total – those books kept just $2.6 million in revenue for a 0.34% hold.

That 75.4% share could be much higher if the Nevada Gaming Commission allowed mobile registration.

The commission recently approved such registration for cashless betting in retail casinos but the switch did not apply to online NV sports betting.

Remote registration could potentially double handle, US Integrity President Matthew Holt said.

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Matthew Waters

Matthew Waters is a reporter covering legal sports betting and the gambling industry. Previous stops include Fantini Research and various freelance jobs covering professional and amateur sports in Delaware and the Philadelphia area.

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