OPINION: Is Sports Betting Ruining Sports?


Madeline Wilson

Sports reporter Marquis Adams opens the FanDuel app.

Marquis Adams, Staff Writer

In all my years as an NBA fan, I have never—and I mean never—thought I would partake in the life-sucking activity of sports betting.

So, for a little context, I’m about two years into this, and I haven’t exactly had the best of luck when it’s come to landing any of the bets I’ve placed so far.

Now that’s not to say I haven’t hit any of them, but I’ve missed more times than I’ve hit, but then again… who hasn’t, right?

I keep it simple and play the safe route when it comes to sports betting. I do Same-Game Parlays which—in my humble opinion—is the safest kind of bet to make, especially if you know the player’s game.

So you’d think I’d hit a lot more right?


At this point, I’ve come to terms with the mathematical concept that I’m more likely to not hit my bets than I am to hit them, but for some reason that hasn’t stopped me from continuing to place them.

Now, as we move into year three of my sports betting “habit,” I started thinking to myself: Do I even watch the games for the sake of the games? Or now do I simply watch just to see if any of my bets hit?

And that’s where the problem lies. Has this mindset ruined sports? Am I the only one who thinks this way? I’m willing to bet I’m not (pun fully intended).

I’ve seen countless social media posts and rants about how a player ruined someone’s bet. People have openly admitted to not even watching the games until the closing minutes to see how close they are.

It’s hard to believe that the number of true fans of sports is potentially diminishing. From an NBA, NFL or MLB standpoint, they couldn’t care less as to why people view the games, just as long they do.

Though from a player’s perspective, sometimes players are heckled or threatened because they cost someone their bet. So it places somewhat of a responsibility—I say that loosely—on the players to not cost people their bets in hopes of not being heckled.

But no matter which way you view it, the player is going to cost someone their money. If someone bets on a player to score over 25 points and they do, then they just cost the person who bet on them to score under, and vice versa.

It’s a lose-lose situation every time for the player, a win-win for the organizations and a win-lose for the fans that are betting.

So the question still remains, has sports betting ruined sports?