Will Donald Trump be the person who finally brings down the utterly absurd US ban on regulated sports betting?

Many people are saying just that and, no matter what he does, there seems to be a clear softening of attitudes towards the ban from its biggest supporters, US professional sports leagues.

Even Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association, has described the current state of affairs as, “a perfect storm,” for reintroducing sports betting into the US gambling ecosystem.

So why is the US gambling community so excited, even though no lawmaker has introduced anything remotely resembling a sports betting ban repeal?

For starters, sports betting dreamers have seen a slight thaw in the attitude of professional sports leagues towards ending the ban. In particular, they look towards the NFL’s recent decision to allow the Oakland Raiders to become Nevada’s first professional sports team.

While that may seem like a big deal, it really isn’t.

The idea that organized crime might infiltrate a sports team based in Las Vegas was not such a far-fetched idea in the 1960′s and 1970′s when the mob ran Vegas. These days, corporations run Vegas and the NFL isn’t quite as concerned about Vegas-based game fixing.

That said, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has mentioned that the ban should be lifted and the NFL has definitely embraced daily fantasy sports.

Other sports betting enthusiasts point towards Trump’s long-held ties with the gambling industry and his relationship with casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. Adelson donated tens of millions of dollars to the Trump campaign and there’s no reason to expect that he doesn’t expect something in return.

So far, however, Trump hasn’t shown any signs that he’s going to pay Sheldon’s kindness with anything at all.

As of this writing, the US President hasn’t made any moves towards lifting the ban and doesn’t seem to have the political capital to make such move anyways.

 

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