Big News: NBA Joins American Gambling Association’s Responsible Gaming Campaign

It seems to be clearer than ever that sportsbetting is going mainstream.

That’s right! The Sportsbook Revolution continues!

As if a Super Bowl ad featuring Rob Gronkowski weren’t enough to make this clear – although it’s funny to note that, in this case, the revolution will, in fact, be televised – an even bigger brand is currently getting in on the action.

We’re speaking, of course, about a little sports concern you may have heard of called the National Basketball Association.

Better known as the NBA, this sporting and cultural powerhouse is used to making major news just about every day, whether from the latest marquee trade,

What It Means for the AGA… and Their Program

For years now, the American Gaming Association (AGA) has been on the forefront of gambling issues in North America. For all the nonsense that politicians tend to spout on issues of regulation, legalization, and support for problem gambling issues, it’s always deeply refreshing to see this organization promote the growth of gambling in as sustainable and thoughtful a way as possible.

In 2019, they launched their Have a Game Plan: Bet Responsibly campaign. Now, in the NBA, they have a partner with one of the largest platforms (and followings) imaginable!

Their goal is to educate fans and gamblers on the the campaign’s four core principles. These are:

  • Set a budget and stick to it.
  • Keep it social
  • Know the odds
  • Play with legal, well-regulated

In terms of content, the aim is to include in-venue, broadcast, digital, and social media promotion to ensure widespread access to this information.

It’s been proven time and time again that access to safe gambling resources makes a big difference in protecting vulnerable players from problem behavior.

With the AGA putting their money where their mouth is, and involving one of the world’s most meaningful brands, it seems reasonable to expect even better results.

What It Means for the NBA

On one level, the NBA’s daily business is so full of major headlines that this announcement barely functions as a blip on their radar screen.

After all, there are literally hundreds of news-worthy basketball-related stories every single day! Whether it’s the season, the post-season, or the off-season, the players and execs never seem to sleep…

… and neither does their fan base! In that context, how big a deal can it really be for the league to take part in this initiative?

One another level, though, this is a big statement on what the League thinks that the coming years have in store. Indeed, this isn’t the first time the League has made moves or deals signaling that they indeed see sports betting as the wave of the future.

After all, of all the major American sports organizations, the NBA has long held its ear closest to the ground in terms of larger societal trends – whether supporting players’ stance for the Black Lives Matter Movement (especially when compared with the NFL’s response, rich in racist dog whistles, blacklistings, and more), or encouraging social media branding for its players and franchises (again, especially when compared with the slothful MLB approach). So it shouldn’t be all that surprising that they are making this statement of faith in the future of sportsbook in American life.

In short, the NBA is broadcasting to anyone who cares to listen that they expect sportsbet gambling to become a fixture in American life…

… even more than it already is!

League brass clearly expects more legalization, less strict regulation, and a future in which sportsbook is truly commonplace. And when that happens, they want to be on the right side of history!

What It Means for Sportsbook

Time is a funny thing. As of the time of this writing, it would seem that the NBA is by far the most powerful actor in this story – I mean, we are talking about a multi-billion dollar brand with some of the world’s greatest athletes and celebrities on the payroll, as well as one of the world’s most beloved entertainment products!

Likewise, the AGA has been around since 1995, boasts an impressive membership list, Board of Directors, and proven track record of successful advocacy for gambling issues.

Compared to these two institutions, how important is sports betting, really?

Indeed, taken as a snapshot, it would seem that the sportsbook community is by far the weakest, least influential of the three organizations involved here.

But. Pull back the lens a bit, and things start to look a very different.

Imagine what the world might look like one, two, or three decades from now. Yes, it’s extremely likely that the NBA will remain a massively profitable, extremely culturally relevant force.

Yet, if current trends continue, betting on sports is unlikely to continue to play such a niche role.

Remember that gambling on sports is nothing new! Private oddsmakers, bookies, and a whole cottage industry of sportsbook enthusiasts have always been readily active wherever sport and civilization thrived.

What’s new in our age is the movement towards legalization and regulation!

It finally seems that some politicians, towns, regions, and states are realizing that the profits from betting on sporting events do far, far more good going towards local governance than into the coffers of black market operators, disreputable companies, and/or organized crime. People are finally starting to accept that sportsbook is here to stay… and that it’s better off regulated in the sunlight of public life, than unregulated, invisible, but funneling money into all the wrong places.

All of this would seem to indicate that we should expect sportsbetting to become a legitimate multi-billion industry of its own in the coming years!

In its own subtle way, the NBA is telling us that they believe this to be the truth of things. And the brightness of this future is definitely one we can get behind!