Legal Nevada Sports Betting

Sports wagering has been monopolized by the state of Nevada – with the federal government’s blessing (per the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA) – since 1992. However, legal Nevada sports betting is no longer the only game in town, as the Supreme Court overturned PASPA in May 2018. Now, all states are able to legalize and regulate their own sports betting industries. Still, Nevada has a huge head start on these other states, and Sin City will continue to be the de facto hub for US sports wagering, particularly when it comes to mainstream media coverage of the now-ubiquitous industry.

Roughly $5 billion in handle is turned annually at legal Nevada sports betting venues (casinos and online portals associated with them). However, most experts agree that this legal sports betting represents only 3-4% of the total amount of money that Americans wager on athletics each and every year. Some estimates say it might even be as little as 1%, however, with plausible figures pegging sports betting as a $400-500 billion industry in the US. In either case, the lion’s share of that cash is going overseas to legal offshore sportsbooks, and much of the newfound betting legalization in America is specifically designed to recoup some of those losses and allow citizens and residents to bet on sports in a way that actually profits local and national government. All that said, as far as land-based wagering destinations go, legal Nevada sports betting has a massive head start and will unquestionably remain the number-one place to bet on sports in person.

Is Land Based Sports Betting Legal In Nevada?

Land-based sports betting is 100% legal in Nevada, but the pastime is highly regulated. You can wager on sports at just about any of NV’s nearly 250 casinos, and most casinos also have associated online components that allow you to wager remotely. Sometimes these experiences are geo-fenced to the properties themselves, though there are several online wagering platforms that are accessible to everyone in the state, no matter where they are. Of course, federal law still applies, and the Wire Act prevents legal Nevada sports betting sites from accepting wagers across state lines. Still, if you live in NV, you won’t have to travel far to wager on sports, and the pastime will rarely be as convenient as it is in and around the Las Vegas area.

Is It Illegal To Bet On Sports Online In Nevada?

It is not illegal to bet on sports online in Nevada, though you have to go through a licensed, regulated bookmaking service in order to be in compliance with state law. Additionally, the book you use must be based within the state of Nevada (where it will likely be associated with a prominent physical casino). Nevada takes black-market bookies extremely seriously and polices the industry attentively, but there is a legal alternative to using in-state online books: offshore sports betting sites. Because these sportsbooks are owned and operated overseas, and because there are no Nevada or US laws criminalizing individual players from making wagers, you are free to use these books at your convenience. Typically, offshore, Internet-based sportsbooks have more gambling options, better payouts, and are willing to allow deposits and withdrawals with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, giving them a decided advantage over native NV options.

Nevada Sports Betting Revenue

Nevada sports betting has been flourishing for decades and continues to do so. There is no surprise that this industry, which held somewhat of a monopoly for many years, is as successful as it is. You could look at any three-month revenue report for Nevada sports betting and see that the sportsbooks can bring in over $20 million a month, easily. Nevada sports betting has seen their handle reach $500 million multiple times and has even inched closer to the $600 million mark in recent months. In fact, over $146 million was wagered on Super Bowl 53 in Nevada alone!

Rank Sportsbook Bonus Offer Play Now
1 Sportsbetting Online Sportsbook 50% Up To $1,000 Read Review Visit Sportsbetting
2 MyBookie Online Sportsbook 50% Up To $1,000 Read Review Visit MyBookie
3 BetOnline Online Sportsbook 50% New Member Bonus!Read Review Visit Betonline
4 5Dimes Online Sportsbook 50% Up To $520Read Review Visit 5Dimes

Is There Anywhere In Nevada That I Can I Bet On Sports?

A better question to ask would be “Is there anywhere in Nevada that I can’t bet on sports?” And the answer is no. Nevada is peppered with casinos in every section of the state, and the majority of these offer sportsbooks. Add to that the online options (both NV-based and offshore), and you’ve got no shortage of places to enjoy legal Nevada sports betting, wherever you are. In most cases, all you’ll need to participate in any kind of legal Nevada sports betting is an Internet connection and a computer, smartphone (iPhone or Android), or modern tablet with an up-to-date web browser. In Nevada, bookmakers are around every corner, and they’re right in your pocket or purse, too!

Where’s The Closest Place To Me To Bet?

In Nevada, pretty much anywhere you happen to be is the closest place to you to bet, as there are casinos and gambling opportunities just about everywhere in the state (not including the multitude of online options available to you). Obviously, just about every town near the main Vegas Strip has sports betting and gambling, though many other municipalities throughout the state offer a wide selection of casinos, too. The cities where you will find the most legal Nevada sports betting venues are listed below.

Cities With Nevada Sportsbooks:

  • Las Vegas
  • North Las Vegas
  • Paradise
  • Pahrump
  • Reno
  • Carson City
  • Laughlin
  • Henderson
  • Stateline
  • Sparks
  • Winchester
  • West Wendover
  • Crystal Bay
  • Elko

Nevada Sports Betting And Gambling Laws

If you want to see an example of a lengthy, clinically specific, and absolutely robust set of gambling legislation, the Nevada sports betting and gambling laws are just the ticket. Every aspect of the industry is defined in the massive missive, from “interactive gaming” to “mobile gaming” to “sports pools” to “banking games” and everything in between. Title 41 of the Nevada Revised Statutes (Gaming; Horse Racing; Sporting Events, chapters 462-467) is where you’ll find all the specifics about legal Nevada sports betting, casino gaming, horse racing, combat sports regulations, and all the licensing and rules that go along with these.

Currently, there are no pending gambling bills or any other proposed legislation re sports wagering or casino gaming in Nevada, and nothing is obviously on the horizon, either. For the most part, NV’s gaming laws are complete and comprehensive.

What Teams Can I Bet On?

Obviously, in Nevada, you the teams you can bet on are innumerable. You can wager on every club in the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, NCAA, and more, as well as all the teams involved in international league sports like soccer, rugby, cricket, MMA, boxing, tennis, and so on. However, there are certain local and nearby teams that carry a large fanbase in NV, and these receive a lopsided number of wagers every time they play. The Vegas Golden Knights of the NHL play in Paradise at the T-Mobile Arena, and the Oakland Raiders are moving to Vegas in 2020. These aren’t the only popular teams in the area, by any means. Many of the most bet-on sports teams in Nevada include the following:

College/NCAA

Nevada Wolf Pack (University of Nevada, Reno) UNLV Rebels (University of Nevada, Las Vegas)

Professional

Arizona Cardinals (NFL) Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders (NFL) Los Angeles Dodgers (MLB)
Los Angeles Lakers (NBA) Vegas Golden Knights (NHL)  

Horse Racing Betting In Nevada

Ironically, there are no horse racing tracks in Nevada, as the industry has had several failed attempts to bring the pastime to the gambling capital of the world. Given the combination of the Vegas nightlife and the desert heat during the day, it’s not a huge surprise that outdoor gambling venues like racetracks wouldn’t fare well, but it does feel odd. All that said, there is still legal horse racing betting in Nevada, as most of the casinos in the state offer simulcast wagering on action from all around the US. Occasionally, the Elko County Fair will host horse races of various types, but these are not regular occurrences and do not really constitute an established horse racing betting culture in the state. For fans of the ponies in NV, simulcasting aside, horse racing betting (national and international alike) is available at the offshore sportsbooks that accept Nevada resident customers.

Daily Fantasy Sports In Nevada

Daily fantasy sports, or DFS as it’s commonly known, is extremely popular throughout the country. However, DFS is actually illegal in Nevada! This largely seems to be a function of the major US DFS brands (FanDuel and DraftKings, among others) not being willing to meet Nevada’s strict revenue-sharing and tax requirements. Whether this is likely to change any time soon is anyone’s guess.

That said, there has been a recent push in Nevada to legalize daily fantasy sports, but so far, the DFS lobbyists have had no luck getting any proposals looked at by the state congress. For serious DFS players – and there is significant overlap between them and traditional sports bettors – legalization would be a huge boon, as it is currently infeasible for DFS players to travel to Nevada during their sports seasons, as all the top DFS providers are blocked from Nevada, even over the Internet, via effective geo-fencing.

Legal Nevada Sports Betting FAQ’s

Can I Bet Real Money On Sports In Nevada?

You can absolutely bet real money on sports in Nevada. After all, there wouldn’t be much point to legal Nevada sports betting if you couldn’t! However, if you don’t wish to visit a local casino or use their online wagering platforms, you can also legally use an offshore sportsbook like BetOnline, SportsBetting, 5Dimes, or other top sites to safely and efficiently put money on your favorite teams and players.

Is Online Sports Betting Safe In Nevada?

Whether you do so at a regulated in-state Internet site or use an offshore sportsbook, online sports betting is safe in Nevada. Your deposits are always going to be secure and encrypted, and no casino service or overseas sports betting site is going to sell your information to third parties or otherwise compromise your privacy in any way. And no matter which service you choose to hand your wagering, timely payouts are always guaranteed.

Will Sports Betting In Nevada Ever Be Legal?

Sports betting in Nevada is already legal (since 1949), and you have more options to enjoy the pastime in the state than anywhere else in the US. While everyone is used to the idea of betting on sports via land-based and online platforms in Nevada, one thing many bettors don’t realize is that the state bars wagering on non-sports events and markets, even if those are tangentially related to sports. In fact, it was only in 2016 that the Nevada Gaming Control Board allowed Olympics betting, as these events are classified as amateur wagering (though enough professionals compete that the events were eventually allowed to be covered).

Similarly, NV books don’t take action on entertainment odds like those for the Academy Awards, popular reality shows, and so on. Right now, there is no plan in place to change this, but as other states allow such wagers going forward, it is conceivable that the NGCB will change its tune to allow this sort of fun, profitable betting.

Will I Get Arrested For Sports Betting In Nevada?

No, you will not be arrested for sports betting in Nevada. However, you should be advised (and this is all common sense, really) to only use a regulated in-state sportsbook or legal offshore sports betting site. While it is not illegal to place a bet with an unlicensed local bookmaker, there is simply no reason to risk putting your money into such a scheme when so many legal, convenient options exist.

What Is the Sports Betting Age In Nevada?

The legal age to wager on sports in Nevada is 21, which is the same for all casino gaming as well. While most legal offshore sportsbooks will accept users at just 18 years old, it is recommended that in states that have a defined sports betting age minimum, you stick to that no matter where you’re wagering. And also bear in mind: If you sign up under the age of 18 to wager at offshore books, your money will be confiscated and your account will be suspended permanently. These sites take their terms of service extremely seriously.

Are There Mobile Sports Betting Apps Available In Nevada?

There are many mobile sports betting apps available in Nevada. Most larger casinos offer their own sports wagering apps that you can download for iPhone or Android, though many of these will only be usable while you are physically on casino grounds. There are some locally-based services that are also available online no matter where you are in the state. However, for true mobile sports betting that isn’t geo-fenced, you still have to use one of the offshore sportsbooks. Their mobile experiences have no required app downloads, instead relying on secure, optimized, browser-based platforms.

Where Is The Best Place To Bet On Sports In Nevada?

This is an impossible question to answer, as there are nearly unlimited options for where bettors can place their sports wagers in NV. The easy answer is to suggest that the closest sportsbook to your location is the one to choose if you want to enjoy an evening out. However, most NV sports betting traffic goes through Internet-based betting sites – both state-licensed and offshore – due to their sheer convenience. All that said, if you want to wager at the most famous Nevada sportsbook, the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas is considered Ground Zero for the entire industry.

Should I Use A Local Bookie In Nevada?

You can use a local bookie in Nevada, as there are dozens (if not hundreds) of licensed sportsbooks that operate in the state. However, you should not use a black market or “street level” bookie, as they are operating an illegal business and often have mob ties in the area. If you value your wallet and your kneecaps, go with a local casino sportsbook or an offshore sports betting site.

Do Any Casinos In Nevada Have Sports Betting?

Yes, most all of the casinos in Nevada have sports betting. Overall, you have more local venues at which to bet on sports in Nevada than you do anywhere else in America, and that will remain true for the foreseeable future. Most NV casinos – particularly those in Las Vegas – will have similar odds and lines as one another, but because of the density of available betting sites, you can easily shop around to get an edge on whatever wagers you wish to place (though this is still easier to do online).

Is It Legal To Bet On Sports With My Friends In Nevada?

Yes, per NRS 463.0152, gambling in “private homes or residences in which no person makes money” for operating the games is legal. This is, on paper, limited to “card games,” but there is no provision in the law for the enforcement of private gaming bans of any kind. As long as there is no “house” making a profit (meaning that all money risked is between the private parties involved in the actual wagering), you are good to go. Just make sure to limit your social legal Nevada sports betting activities to private residences, and never advertise your intentions on social media. And obviously, never call the cops if your friend welches on a bet, either.

When Did Sports Betting Become Legal In Nevada?

Sports betting became legal in Nevada in 1949 at the same time that they legalized live and off-track horse betting. It was because it was legalized so long ago that once the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was signed into law in 1992, the state of Nevada was actually excluded out of the law’s legal purview. This gave Nevada an advantage over other states because they essentially had a monopoly over the entire industry. Sports betting in Nevada continues to be legal even after PASPA was repealed in May of 2018.

How Many Sportsbooks Are In Nevada?

There are well over 100 sportsbooks in Nevada. William Hill operates many of them. The largest and most popular sportsbooks are of course located in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Caesars sportsbook, as well as the Westgate Superbook, are both used in various media channels as the places for which to view odds. There are also sportsbooks located in Reno as well as Lake Tahoe which attracts many sports bettors from all over the US each year.