“Yo Adrian, I did it!”
Pennsylvania lawmakers had to be channeling their inter-Rocky when they legalized sports betting in 2018. PA has the fifth most people in the United States, so them legalizing was a huge step in the right direction. The major cities in this populous state are Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
Philly and their 1.6 million people have four major sports teams to root for. The Eagles, Phillies, Flyers and 76ers all play in South Philadelphia. Pittsburgh is significantly smaller than Philadelphia with 302,000 people, but they have three major professional sports teams. The Steelers, Penguins and Pirates have been a staple in American sports.
The colleges in PA need some love too. Many of the schools not only have in-state fans, they also have a national brand. Penn State, Villanova, Pittsburgh, U Penn and Temple are the main schools known for their athletics.
It’s clear the Keystone State is passionate about their sports teams. That’s probably why Pennsylvania has the fourth most dollars wagered since sports betting was legalized in 2018. The only issue is it’s hard to tell if the fans are mad for poor performance or losing them money!
Yes, gambling is legal in Pennsylvania. The Governor at the time, Tim Wolf, signed House Bill 519 in 2017 that would make sports betting legal in PA if the Supreme Court overturned PASPA. In 2018, the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). This allowed other states to have legal gambling besides just Nevada.
PA took this news and ran. The state opened their first brick and mortar sportsbook in November 2018. Residents had to go in person to the Hollywood Casino and place their bets. It wasn’t until May 31st, 2019, that mobile sportsbooks operations were launched. There are now 15 brick-and-mortal sportsbooks operating along with 13 online sportsbooks.
Pennsylvania also allows online casino gambling. Only six states in the US allow online casino gambling. PA launched this rare feature in 2019 which also expanded to include online poker.