Place your bets! Sports wagering premieres in New Jersey

Murphy places first legal NJ sports bets

David Madden
June 14, 2018 - 11:01 am
Sports fans wait in line to place bets at Borgata in Atlantic City.

David Madden/KYW Newsradio

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ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — Sports fans can now place bets, legally, in New Jersey.

Sports betting premiered in the Garden State on Thursday after lengthy legal battles with pro leagues and the NCAA.

Gov. Phil Murphy placed the first bet at Monmouth Park: $20 on Germany to win the World Cup, and another $20 on the New Jersey Devils to take the Stanley Cup next year.

RELATED: Murphy will make first legal sports bet at Monmouth Park

A half-hour later, the new sports book opened at the Borgata in Atlantic City. First bet honors went to Sixers legend Julius Erving. The Doctor put down $5 on the Eagles to repeat as Super Bowl champions.

Borgata officials were beaming, starting with President Marcus Glover.

"This new venture will draw more visitors to Atlantic City than you can imagine," Glover said. "People will come into our building to use amenities that extend much beyond the opportunity of just placing wagers on sports."

Borgata already had a horse racing book up and running, so adding sports betting was no problem. Other casinos will open their sports books when they get approval from the Division of Gaming Enforcement and set aside space.

State Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-Gloucester County) called the advent of sports betting a "game changer" for the Garden State.

"This  is actually going to provide more people coming into Atlantic City, which we care a great deal about, and our racetracks to help our racetracks. And at the end of the day, this is not a big tax generator," Sweeney said.

In fact, the state only expects to make a little more than $13 million the first year.

By the way, Sweeney put down $200 on the Green Bay Packers to win the Super Bowl. Relax. He's always been a Packers fan.