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Is Professional Wrestling the Next Big Thing for Regulated Sports Betting?

Will professional wrestling be the next-big-thing for regulated US sports betting operators? A recent report from CNBC suggests that representatives of the WWE have approached gaming regulators in Colorado and Michigan with a plan for marketing wagers on professional wrestling matches in their states. Though the idea isn’t that far-fetched, wagering on events whose outcome has already been determined such as the Academy Awards is relatively common, officials in both states say they haven’t heard a word from the WWE.

According to a story published Wednesday on officials from the WWE are working with the accounting firm of Ernst & Young on a plan to secure the scripted outcome of professional wrestling matches from everyone, including the wrestlers, until just a few hours before the match.

The idea is similar to how the firm handles the results of the Academy Awards, but offers some significant differences. For example, the Academy Awards results are sealed in envelopes that are opened when the winner is publicly announced. That several hour window between when wrestlers find out the winner of the match and when the match actually occurs, is a period that criminal elements would likely exploit.

Representatives from both Michigan and Colorado threw cold water on the idea saying that they hadn’t been approached by the WWE. The Colorado Division of Gaming also pointed out that the state doesn’t allow wagering on any event whose outcome has been pre-determined, including the Academy Awards.

It seems as though US-facing operators are equally leery of offering a WWE betting product to their players. According to a report on Legal Sports Report, BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt replied, “No f*****g way,” when asked about the prospect of offering regulated wagers on WWE events.

So it seems that, at this point, it’s not likely that players in regulated states will get to place wagers on professional wrestling anytime soon.