A historical lawsuit over millions of contested dollars arising from New Jersey’s prolonged battle to overturn a federal ban on sports betting is nearing a resolution after an agreement was reached this week between the major sports leagues and the NCAA with the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association.
In a report by the Associated Press, it was noted that the latter had sought to open a sports betting site at Monmouth Park Racetrack in 2014 when the federal ban was still in place.
The US Supreme Court didn’t overturn the federal sports betting ban until 2018, but the horsemen’s association had looked to recover a $3.4m bond the leagues had posted in 2014 when they convinced a judge to issue a restraining order to stop the track from offering sports betting while the federal case was still being fought in the courts.
The bond was put in place to cover any losses the track might incur for the month the restraining order was in operation.
US District Judge Freda Wolfson’s order entered on Monday did not specify the amount of the settlement, which should be finalized within the next 30 days.
Wolfson, in an opinion last month, expressed doubts that the NJTHA had sufficiently demonstrated it had suffered damages equal to the bond amount while the restraining order was in effect.
She also rejected the association’s calls for payment of $150m in damages which ostensibly represented lost revenue due to being prevented from offering sports betting at the track for the three and a half years between the issuance of the restraining order and the Supreme Court’s 2018 decision to repeal PASPA.
The NJTHA argued that the leagues had acted in bad faith in 2014 when they applied for the restraining order because they were already promoting and endorsing businesses that made millions from fantasy sports games that relied on individual player performances. The leagues denied those claims.
Anthony Dreyer, an attorney representing the leagues, was quoted by AP: “The New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, National Collegiate Athletic Association, National Basketball Association, National Football League, National Hockey League, and Major League Baseball have resolved all disputes arising out of their litigation concerning the legalization of sports gambling in the State of New Jersey. The parties are pleased to conclude this matter.”