It is expected that the NFL will make way for NCAAB (college basketball) as the big league for sportsbook operators in March, despite running alongside the regular NBA season, to concentrate on’ newcomer take-up’ among US teams.
That’s focused on the seasonality data presented by Kambi as part of an NFL 2019/20 Report on betting patterns across its sportsbook operators network.
Two-in-five (or 41 percent) US players have put their first wager on an NFL game over the course of 2019, compared with 14 percent for the NBA and only 5 percent for college basketball.
Yet more than 50 percent of betting entrants in the US arrived in March 2019 with wagers on college basketball inspired by March Madness, the single elimination competition that has become one of the country’s most popular annual sporting events.
As predicted, the top college basketball tournament (final April 8, 2019) was then supplanted by the NBA, the top U.S. league for the professional ranks of the sport, when number one for the’ newcomer take-up’ in the months of April and May. However, with the NBA finals stretching into mid-June, Major League Baseball (MLB) picked up the mantle for June to August, before the NFL came back to claim the position.
In fact, the MLB accounted for the highest proportion of newcomers for any given month in 2019, at nearly 70 percent for July, the only month of the year in which only one of the top six US sports betting handle leagues is still in progress.
The NFL, NCAAB, NBA and MLB are currently joined by the NHL and NCAAF (college football) in this top six group, which combined to create interesting insight into the importance of the cross-sell for sportsbook operators.
In 2019, bettors wagering on each of the six leagues created 58 percent of the NFL handle across the Kambi network. Only 3 percent came from those betting on the NFL and none of the remaining five, with only 4 percent from those betting on the NFL and only one of the others.