Football DataCo, the official rights holder for the Premier League in England and Scotland has emphasised its support for the propositions of the NBA and the MLB when it comes to how a legalised sports betting market could look in the US.
As the decision over PASPA grows nearer, the receptiveness of which many of the American Leagues are to embracing sports gambling has become less and and less. Something that has been elevated by the league’s proposition of a 1% integrity fee.
A proposal that could be seen as more effective when it comes to actually increasing integrity in the legalised sports betting market, is one that’s being specifically lobbied for by the NBA and the MLB, which is that betting operators are forced to share data with the leagues.
During a phone interview with ESPN, Adrian Ford, general manager of Football DataCo, commented: “Broadly, we don’t think what the leagues are asking for is fundamentally wrong, if you’re trying to come up with a framework that works for both parties.”
In a radio interview that was subsequently published on ESPN.com, he added: “We would not see why there would be an issue about sports getting a return from betting. We’d echo some of the high-level statements the NBA has made. If someone is making money off us, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be interested in that and why we shouldn’t have some level of involvement in the commercial return. It’s clearly not what we have here.
“When it comes to customers and integrity and really trying to provide the best experience, official data, backed by the leagues, is fact. You need a gold standard.
“Ultimately, the common goal — and it is easier said than done — must be to have a functioning, regulated, safe betting market that brings all the offshore money onshore for the good of the sport, for the protection of the players and presumably for the good of the states that are going to get tax revenues.”
Data sharing is something that is enforced within the UK betting market, however in spite of the league’s formerly lobbying for it, there is only a betting rights fee that is paid by operators on the sport of horse racing, which is much more reliant on the funding from betting operators that football would be.
On the other hand, calls for a betting fee from the English football leagues have waned as the leagues have found alternative routes to benefit from the rise of sports betting, with ever Premier League club having at least one betting partner, some expanding further having both domestic betting partnerships domestically and globally.
Looking ahead building a chivalrous relationship between betting operators and the major US leagues, that’s mutually beneficial for both, may be some way off. Although, when the gap between the two is eventually bridged, it looks increasingly likely that the process will be spearheaded by the NBA, who have already agreed a first of its kind type partnership with YouTube. To read more about that deal and how it could signify potential change for sponsorships between American leagues and betting operators, click below.