New Jersey betting law may stick it to certain sports owners

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The state that helped open the floodgates for sports gambling by taking on the sports leagues will be adding a tweak to its sports betting law that could force some sports team owners to make a tough decision.

As explained by the Associated Press, casinos or executives that own 10 percent or more of professional sports team would be prevented from offering sports betting. This would force Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta (pictured), who also owns the Golden Nugget casino, to choose between not offering sports betting at the Golden Nugget or selling the Rockets (or, obviously, selling the casino).

The provision also raises a question, in our view, regarding whether the Giants and Jets will be able to provide in-stadium, real-time wagering at MetLife Stadium. Apparently, the betting itself would have to be offered by an entity that the teams don’t own, with payment made to the Giants and Jets for the purposes of allowing the bets to be made on the premises, during games.

The state should want to facilitate such wagering, due to the significant revenue it can generate. Given the manner in which the NFL and other leagues fought New Jersey’s effort to launch sports gambling, however, New Jersey may decide to implement plenty of roadblocks for the sports leagues to maximize revenue — possibly in order to get the sports leagues to compensate New Jersey for the millions lost while the litigation was pending.