Indiana has had legal sports betting for a little more than two years and it has continued to deliver good things to the state. There have been ups and downs in the market, just like there are with any, but, overall, things are looking up. June proved to be a relatively successful month for Indiana and its sportsbooks, despite a decrease in handle. With the NBA Finals now underway and the NFL season quickly approaching, the second half of the year should bring better numbers.
Indiana’s Sports Betting Market Grows
In May, Indiana’s sports betting revenue closed at $6.6 million. That wasn’t a great result, but there weren’t many high-profile sports events in the month, either. June turned things around, with total revenue of $25.4 million, a month-on-month increase of 35%. Compared to last year, when COVID-19 had a firm grip on the world and forced sports games to be called off, the latest result is a massive 771.4% improvement.
Last month’s results came even as the state’s handle dropped. According to state figures, the handle was $246.3 million, $8.1 million less than a month earlier. Still, compared to June 2020, it was much better, increasing 727% from the $29.7 million recorded that month. If this year follows the same pattern from last year, the handle should significantly improve this month, as well. Last year, from June to July, the handle increased by 138%. However, much of that was because the NBA and MLB resumed in July after battling COVID-19 issues.
Basketball Rules the Court
Indiana has always been known as a state of basketball fans and this can be seen in the sports betting numbers. Basketball received $77 million of last month’s bets, a dip of 6.4% from the $82.3 million a month earlier. Putting this into perspective, and as a clear indication of the damage caused by COVID-19, basketball wagers in June of last year only reached $2.4 million. This year, however, the NBA postseason is helping to keep gamblers entertained and providing substantial interest. The LA Clippers, the Phoenix Suns, the Milwaukee Bucks and the Atlanta Hawks have made for an interesting postseason, with only the Bucks and the Suns surviving to the very end.
MLB, which was also forced to the dugouts for an extended period of time last year, has rebounded in 2021, with Opening Day being held on schedule. It has found a place in the sports betting market, attracting $60.4 million in wagers last month. That was 19% better than May and $52.4 million better than a year ago. In addition to NBA and MLB wagers, another $250 million was spent on football and other sports.
FanDuel Rules the Indiana Crowd
Thanks to its entrenched position in the state, FanDuel saw the best performance in Indiana last month. It is partnered with the Blue Chip Casino and took in $9.2 million in revenue on a handle of $65.1 million. Next up was Ameristar Casino and its DraftKings sportsbook, which recorded a handle of $83.9 million and revenue of $5.9 million. BetMGM is trying to threaten the leading positions of both, using Balterra Casino to pick up $3.2 million in gross revenue on a handle of $27.9 million. It managed to just beat William Hill and its Tropicana Evansville partner, which recorded revenue of $3.1 million and a handle of $11.8 million.
2020 has been an interesting year for Indiana’s sports gambling market, with plenty of highs and lows. January, which marked the fifth straight month of record revenue, was a good month, followed by a drop in February. That drop came as the Super Bowl was the last big NFL game of the season, but March saw a slight rebound thanks to the NCAA’s March Madness. Now, with things returning to normal in the sports world everywhere, Indiana and all other legal sports betting states can start to build better and more consistent results with their markets.