After sports betting in Nevada went up during January, February produced some disappointing results. The Nevada Gaming Commission expected this decline, but there was some hope that the final results could be surprising.
In February, the total sports betting handle in Nevada was $554 million, which was a drop of nearly 15 percent from January. Sports betting handle was up more than 12 percent year-over-year, and it could set the stage for a big year in 2021.
Some retail sportsbooks in Nevada are still operating under COVID-19 restrictions, which impacted the total numbers. Nevada is the only remaining state that requires in-person registration, and that has kept the online portion of the industry from taking off.
March is expected to provide some positive numbers in Nevada as the 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is underway. While there have been changes made to the event, it is still one of the most popular sporting events in the U.S.
Basketball Brought in Most Wagers
There was just one football game during February, the 2021 Super Bowl. There were still over $133 million in wagers placed on the Super Bowl, but football was just the second most popular sport on which to bet.
The number one spot went to basketball, as that sport brought in more than $325 million in bets. Hockey was third on the list with just under $40 million, and the Vegas Golden Knights help drive betting on that sport in the state.
Revenue Also Declines
Not only did the total sports betting decline in February, but total sports betting revenue did as well. Revenue was just $31.8 million last month, which was a decrease of nearly 40 percent from January.
A drop in revenue was expected as well, but Nevada was not expected to fall below the 2020 total. February 2020 saw a revenue of $38.1 million, which means year-over-year revenue fell by more than 16 percent.
Total gaming wins in the state increased by more than $10 million from January, with the reported total coming in at $772.4 million.
Rough Month For Entire U.S.
The entire United States sports betting industry saw a sharp decrease in both total handle and revenue in February, and several factors played into that. February is traditionally a slow month for sports betting as there are fewer days in the month, and the NFL season has ended.
New Jersey is the clear sports betting leader in the U.S., but that state saw a decrease of more than $200 million in total sports betting handle. This state was the first to go over the $900 million mark for monthly betting handle, but it showed how down the entire industry was.
Michigan is one of the few states that saw a huge increase from January to February, but that was because it was just the first full month of sports betting. March numbers throughout the country are expected to climb, but that will be revealed in April.