It is challenging to say the exact reason why people bet on sports. We can think of numerous reasons. Generally, sports betting started the moment sports became prominent. Therefore, it happened thousands of years ago.
It was one of the most exciting ways to pass the time and to increase the excitement while following your favorite team, horse, or something else.
Let us start from the beginning.
We can say that the first relevant record of sports betting dates back more than two millennia ago. For instance, the Greeks had an immersive love of games, which lead to the Olympics. That was the earliest record that people were betting on sports and competitions.
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Apart from Greeks, sports betting was also accessible in ancient Rome when it became the primary source of funding due to its legality. For instance, Romans bet on gladiator games and other sporting events, which spread faster than any other activity all across the kingdom.
Of course, during the Middle Ages, the numerous religions wanted to forbid and ban it altogether. That was the main reason why betting went underground and still prevailed.
Generally, we can say that its underground effect created even more significant growth when compared with past times when it was legal.
If we check the later years in history, England was the place where horserace betting became prominent for most people.
They spread this particular practice all across the globe, especially in the United States. In the US horserace, betting became the favorite pastime for most people of that time.
As we can see, gambling and betting continued to grow internationally. Even today, it is still prevalent, especially across Europe, which is the biggest sports betting market when compared with other continents.
After the technology advanced and numerous sporting events expanded, the people started improving the betting and the regulations that come with it.
Some sports did not exist a few hundred years back. However, today, you will be able to bet on numerous sporting events from American football to soccer.
Today, this particular market generates multi-billion dollars on an annual basis, which makes it both profitable and fun activity for bettors and bookmakers.
In the fifties of the last century, Las Vegas legalized sports betting as well as land-based casinos so that people could enjoy along the way. The problem was that you had to enter the casino so that you can place a wager.
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Therefore, people had to go on road trips and weekends just to enjoy this particular activity. The monopoly Las Vegas had brought billions of dollars each year, with only a small percentage of people betting due to the inability to reach Vegas.
On the other hand, the underground betting market prevailed in other states and major towns, which was profitable for bookies. Years afterward, betting on most sports in the USA was illegal, and people had to use underground channels to do it.
Bookies had to operate illegally, and law enforcement ignored them for numerous reasons. Similarly, as with any other jurisdiction in the world, you will be able to find online bookies to place a bet as well.
Since numerous countries have banned the betting, that created an underground economy that affected the criminality in the world, sometimes, it is impossible to prosecute those people. It was risky to place a bet because no one could guarantee you that you would get your winnings.
Online Sports Betting
After the Internet became popular for people from all across the globe, sports betting reached another level of popularity. The main reason for that was a convenience that people could bet wherever they are from PC or mobile devices.
That was the main reason why this particular industry exploded and continued to grow as time went by. The main idea is that today, you do not have to visit a bookie to place a bet. At the same time, you do not have to visit the sporting event to enjoy this particular activity.
Today, you can do everything from your couch as you watch television.
That brought other regulations that feature betting on live sports, which brought utterly different levels of excitement. You can bet from minute to minute, which meant that the games became more attractive than before.