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When the New England Patriots won Super Bowl LIII, it was not only a big moment for the history of the Patriots franchise, but for New England sports fans as well. Not only was the win big for them because they support the team that won the championship, but because of the financial implications of the win to those fans who wagered on the game. Given the Patriots' existence in the New England region, it was quite the windfall for Patriots fans, which should give insight as to what betting's fate in the area should be.

Bettors in the New England area flocked to Rhode Island, where sports betting is legal, to bet on the Patriots in the Super Bowl. Those bets were largely successful, as the Patriots not only won straight up but covered the spread in the game as well, when they shut down the Los Angeles Rams in a dominant 13-3 defensive clinic.



That win was not only a win for the team and its backers, but for those who are in favor of the legalization of sports betting around the rest of the country, including Massachusetts. The state is pushing for legalized sports betting, with governor Charlie Baker leading the charge. There is, of course, no guarantee that legalizing sports betting would guarantee bettors the same level of success that they had in Super Bowl LIII, but the sense of community that some of the wagering fostered cannot be denied.

Every fan wants to see their team win every game in most cases, but those fans become even more excited to see their team perform well when there is money on the line. That was exactly what happened during the Super Bowl, with sportsbooks in states surrounding Massachusetts taking losses on the Super Bowl thanks to the Patriots representing the region well.

And that sense of community doesn't necessarily have to end with sports betting, should that industry continue to grow. The decreased stigmatization around betting and sports, in general, could open up sports fans to experiences that don't stop at betting on sports. Teams are getting more and more friendly with fantasy sports brands, and they could conceivably expand further.



The casino space would be a place where pro sports teams, the Patriots included, would be smart to get involved. With teams and media organizations in Canada having advertising partnerships with brands for the casino industry, the American sports landscape would be smart to follow suit. And leveraging those partnerships with bonuses and incentives for players to socially game together would foster a similar sense of community as the one Patriots fans experienced during the Super Bowl. And just like the Super Bowl, it would be centered around the team.

Gambling and sports are already inextricably linked, and that link is set to get even closer as sports betting becomes legal in more states. But there are plenty of other opportunities that Massachusetts, in particular, can take advantage of in the near future, with Super Bowl LIII providing the blueprint.

Staff 2/28/2019 08:02:00 AM Edit
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