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Volume 25 No. 199
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Sports Betting A Hot Topic At Global Gaming Expo In Las Vegas

Sports gambling has been a "hot topic" this week at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in Las Vegas, according to Sally Jaramillo of Las Vegas-based KLAS-CBS. JCM Global VP/Worldwide Marketing Tom Nieman said, "Sportsbook is the hot topic; it has hit the industry in the United States like a [tidal] wave." Jaramillo noted it is now possible for states and sovereign tribal nations to "create a sports betting market that will protect consumers, preserve the integrity of the games and empower law enforcement to fight illegal gambling." Nieman: "We are seeing a huge interest across the country in putting in sports books." When it comes to sports betting, Nieman said that the data is "one of the critical components." He added, "The other critical components it displays is a sports book needs to provide a great deal of information and entertainment" (LASVEGASNOW.com, 10/9). BLOOMBERG NEWS' Christopher Palmeri noted manufacturers at G2E "touted new sports-betting products," and panelists discussed everything from "regulatory compliance to the role of Bitcoin in athletic wagering." Scientific Games, a large slot-machine manufacturer, yesterday "agreed to buy Don Best Sports, a provider of sports-betting data" (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 10/9). G2E Event Dir Korbi Carrison said, "There’s a real electricity in the air around the sports betting topic." She said the G2E sessions have "definitely shifted to sports betting because that’s a hot topic in gaming right now" (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL, 10/9).

THUMB CONTROL: In Las Vegas, Mick Akers asks, "As sports betting is increasingly embraced across the country, could wagering on esports eventually follow it into the mainstream?" A panel of experts at G2E on Monday said that the "rapidly evolving nature of the esports industry, with new game titles and developers popping up all the time, might make regulating esports betting a challenge." Regulating esports matches and "ensuring the integrity of games will be key." Partnerships between game developers and gaming governing bodies "will be crucial, but those publishers might not be so eager to participate, as they have nothing to lose in the sports betting equation." Another factor in the discussion is "how to classify esports." The panelists agreed it would be "up to individual states if esports are classified as sport or event wagering." Regulation and obtaining partnerships between game developers would "go a long way in classifying esports as a sport" (LAS VEGAS SUN, 10/10).