The NBA Is Taxing Sports Betting Operators

Sports betting has become an integral part of the most polarizing worlds in our economy.

All four major professional sports leagues have embraced the trade of allowing fans to place bets on their favorite team, player or event every year.

The big business of sports betting is a multi-billion dollar industry. In an electric oasis in the desert and in casinos on Las Vegas Blvd., some even risk their entire monthly income on their favorite and sulk in their sorrows with watered-down rum and cokes.

Vegas odds are keen to make appearances on nightly prime time sports networks like ESPN and Fox Sports. You’d even be surprised if you don’t see the odds at 8pm on a Saturday before of the largest spectacles in all of sports, the Super Bowl.

Industry titans, like the the commissioner of the the National Basketball Association Adam Silver, are on the forefront of legalizing sports betting and are destined for a clash with the United States Federal Government.

You’re probably wondering why a juggernaut, led by arguably the most liberal leader in all of sports, would want to glorify and embrace an industry that’s been known to for it’s not so sunny roots.

Sports betting is only legal in Nevada but bookies running out of neighborhood barbershops contribute to a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States. So you could see why the NBA sees a tremendous lob in annual earnings every year. With the right regulations in place, the NBA could have the largest piece of the pie.

Yet, the NBA has become a revolutionary on both fronts. The association has now put an “integrity fee” on the organizations they’ve been fighting for in the last four years. The fee would impose a 1% on any NBA game and it would come from the revenue and earnings of the sports betting operators.

Why would the NBA want to put a tax on the groups they’re trying to liberate? It shows the NBA is willing take the necessary steps to get what they want in this entire deal, access to the shangri-la of sports business and frankly, it’s baffling. It’s like calling a timeout without any timeouts left and sealing your season in the final four. Sorry Michigan fans but the sting will always be with you.

Does it make sense? Not really. So to Adam Silver, don’t be a Chris Webber. Don’t be a Bill Buckner. Don’t be a Pete Carroll calling a pass play on the one yard line with 18 seconds to go.

With a pending vote coming later this year, let’s see what the NBA does if regulation passes in the supreme court.

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