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It's Jersey, baby, as Garden State in May passed Nevada as sports betting hub

Astros Minute Maid Park homerun train seen from atop neighboring Union Station May 2019

I admit it. I'm freaking out with this pre-All Star break slump that the Houston Astros are experiencing.

My only consolation is that my pain is all emotional and psychic, not monetary since I don't bet on sporting events.

I, however, apparently am in the minority. Now that sports gambling is legal, it's going gangbusters in the states where it's been approved.

N.J. bettors take over: That's definitely the case in New Jersey, the state responsible for the Supreme Court ruling back in May 2018 that overturned federal law outlawing sports wagering in most parts of the United States.

The Garden State, in fact, in May surpassed Nevada and its many Las Vegas sports book options, the country's long-standing home of betting on sporting events.

Details on how and why bettors wagered more on spotting events last month in New Jersey than in any other bet-allowing state can be found in this weekend's Saturday Shout Out story from The New York Times: "Move Over, Nevada: New Jersey Is the Sports Betting Capital of the Country."

Apps edge out Vegas, baby: It was close, but a win's a win — unless you have a spread to cover.

New Jersey sports books took in $318.9 million in bets in May, while Nevada took in $317.4 million.

Here's a quick spoiler as to why. Mobile.

While bettors in Sin City stick with the sports books at casinos, the most popular form of sports betting by far in New Jersey is by smartphones.


Although bettors still must be physically in New Jersey to make a sports wager there, roughly 80 percent of the state's placed sports bets are made on mobile devices, writes Nick Corasaniti in today's newspaper.

Regardless of how made, winning bets are taxable: If you are placing bets on your favorite Major League Baseball team — especially the series this weekend in London between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox — or the U.S. women's national soccer team or an upcoming golf tournament, good luck.

And keep in mind that newly available sports betting is treated the same as all other gambling proceeds. Uncle Sam is due his tax cut on your winnings.

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