Sports Betting Officially Begins in New Mexico

Written by:
Aaron Goldstein
Published on:

Sports betting in New Mexico officially kicked off Tuesday October 16 at the Santa Ana Star Casino outside of Albuquerque.  The US Supreme Court ruled to abolish decades long prohibition of sports betting in all 50 states, however, each was tasked with amending their own laws to allow the activity.  New Mexico's unique relationship with the Tribes that run the state casinos allowed it to sidestep this process.

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"There will be action taken on the colleges, so the University of New Mexico, New Mexico State — those will be available to wager," said John Salerno, director of operations for USBookmaking, which will run the Santa Ana Star sportsbook.

About the only thing people won't be able to bet on is high school events. Everything else, he said, is fair game.

"You can get the same thing there as you would at any Las Vegas sports book," Salerno added.

The casino is overseen by Pueblo of Santa Ana, a small Native American tribe of roughly 500.

The first bets were taken shortly after 1 pm local time.

Patrick Everson of Covers.com tweeted out:

On first day of sports betting at the Santa Ana Star Casino in New Mexico: "Action was brisk, and most of the wagers were in the lower range. The Dodgers are extremely popular right now. As were the Celtics."

In recent months, sportsbooks have opened in New Jersey, Delaware and Mississippi.  West Virginia and Rhode Island are expected to have sportsbooks up and running in time for the NFL Playoffs and Super Bowl 53.

There are no plans yet to offer online betting in the state.  Area bookmakers speaking off the record with Gambling911 believe the sportsbook will drive business their way as folks will get a taste for the new sportsbook but won't always be able to head to the casino to place their bets.

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