Sports gambling: A bad bet

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Photo by Nick Wang via Unsplash.com

Sports bettors flood New Lumpini boxing stadium in Thailand.

Brady Hunter, Multimedia Manager

“Easy money!” “Who ya got tonight?” “Let’s wager $1000 more.” “Use the DraftKings app!”

With 18 American states having passed sports betting legislation in the past three years, sportsbooks and gambling sites have quadrupled profits and recorded quantitative maximums in several months out of the 2021 year. 

Mobile apps have made sports betting universal, allowing for individuals over the age of 21 to transfer money into a digital wallet and wager money into game lines, player props and other betting strategies that help increase profit. Although apps like DraftKings and Fanduel offer several digital percs, easy access to sports betting leads to a larger demographic of bettors in the market. 

Sports gambling is easy and legal in several states. But do young adults evaluate risk before putting money on athletic events? 

According to New York Times, “sports bettors showed significantly higher levels of problematic gambling than other gamblers. The risk of addiction is higher for young adults — specifically sports bettors — than for those of any other age.”

With little to no bearing of consequence, sports bettors around the world lose money and are unable to pay bookies for their lost money, ultimately leading to an increase in manipulative behaviors in young adults hungry for entertainment and quick cash.

PV alum Peter Zucker examined the cost-to-benefit ratio of sports betting and how to avoid becoming addicted. “I like to bet a couple of dollars on teams that I like or am confident are going to win. A good rule of thumb for me is to only put money on a game that I am going to watch. This makes the bet beneficial and worthwhile. Nowadays, our society is filled with irresponsible bettors who are uneducated upon the risks of the game,” he explained.

Properly managing money while becoming independent is one of the most important steps to becoming successful. Having invested money into the stock market and receiving a 10% return of investment instead of wagering money on a sports team, sports bettors could make money in a much safer and responsible manner. 

Professional sports bettors rarely sustain a long-term winning percentage. According to the Mayo Clinic, “[f]or most of us, making a small wager on a game is fun and harmless. The problem with gambling is the subtle way in which it can take over our behavior and sensibility. This change can occur slowly or quite rapidly depending on a number of variables. The outcomes tend to be the same: damage to relationships, bank accounts, credit rating, and overall mental and physical health.”

Regardless of the fun, excitement or zeal sports betting brings to the table, serious addiction and gambling problems can stem from this “side hustle.” Several states in America do not allow citizens to place money on bets and mobile applications require a location to indicate where money is sent from. 

In short, there are many more effective ways to make money in a short period of time. Whether it be mowing a lawn, working overtime or doing a task for a neighbor, these gestures are a much healthier way to see more green in one’s bank account.