New Jersey's hard-fought battle to regulate sports betting culminated in Governor Phil Murphy placing the first legal sports wager in the state on Thursday (June 14th).
Governor Murphy officially launched regulated sports betting in New Jersey by placing two bets at Monmouth Park Racetrack's William Hill-powered sportsbook. He bet $20 on Germany to win the FIFA World Cup and $20 on the New Jersey Devils to win the 2019 Stanley Cup.
According to Monmouth Park, around 1,000 customers came to place their first bets on opening day.
"We knew in our hearts we were right," Murphy said of the Supreme Court ruling that led to today's launch. "And we knew in our hearts that we would win. And we did."
Dennis Drazin, president and chief executive of Monmouth Park operator Darby Development, described the launch of sports betting as "a historic day for Monmouth Park and for the state of New Jersey".
"We've been fighting this fight for more than six years in the courts and now that this day has arrived and judging by the response from the fans who turned out for this, it’s exciting. Clearly, it’s something the people of New Jersey have been waiting for."
After the first wagers were placed at Monmouth Park, Atlantic City's Borgata launched its sportsbook powered by International Game Technology (IGT), becoming the first casino in the state to take a legal sports bet. The bet was placed by NBA legend Julius Erving.
IGT is supplying the Borgata with an end-to-end retail sports betting solution, enabling the casino's patrons to place in-play and pre-match bets over the counter.
"Deployment of IGT's sports betting solution at Borgata demonstrates that we are ready to deliver the products, technology, support and service to make retail and mobile sports betting a reality in any legalized state, today," IGT chief executive for North America Renato Ascoli said. "We're very excited to extend our successful sports betting relationship with MGM Resorts to New Jersey and beyond."
IGT is already active in Nevada's sports betting market, where its retail betting solution is live at ten properties on the Las Vegas strip. It also offers mobile sports betting via its playMGM app throughout Nevada.
"This is a proud day for Borgata and a proud day for New Jersey," Borgata president and chief operating officer Marcus Glover said.
"Today opens a whole new era in New Jersey sports entertainment. One we anticipate will bring new interest, excitement, and economic benefits to our community. Borgata is proud to list today's first among the many innovative firsts we've accomplished as we celebrate our first 15 years in Atlantic City."