- Pickleball could be picking up traction as an online sportsbook betting option.
- The Professional Pickleball Association has a deal with Genius Sports to promote pickleball.
- In 2022, Washington named pickleball the official sport of the state.
LAS VEGAS – Pickleball – a combination of tennis and racquetball, with a dash of ping-pong – could be coming to online sportsbooks soon.
Online sportsbooks are known for offering odds on obscure sports – in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bovada allowed wagers on Russian ping-pong, stocks, and the weather.
But pickleball isn’t that obscure anymore, with TV contracts, a deal with Genius Sports, and a fan base of youths as well as adults.
Pickleball And Sports Betting
Genius, which bills itself as “the official data, technology, and commercial partner that powers the ecosystem connecting sports, betting and media”, inked the deal with the Professional Pickleball Association in June 2021.
Note that this deal predated Pickleball being named the state sport of Washington, the state where it was invented.
At the signing ceremony for the bill, Sen. John Lovick said:
“This is a sport for everyone,” he said. “We took the humble cucumber. We made it into a pickle, and then we made it into the fastest-growing sport in the world today.”
Indeed, with rumors swirling about FanDuelTV, some believe that pickleball could be one of the sports that is picked up by the network in an attempt to have actionable sports on broadcast 24/7.
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While the channel will reportedly focus on other sports for the 5am-9pm regular broadcast time, from 9pm-5am, the floor appears to be open, and pickleball might well be a beneficiary of it.
What Is Pickleball?
Pickleball is basically tennis, but played with a wiffle ball and small paddles instead of racquets and tennis balls
The game was invented in 1965, and has been seeing growth in recent years due to the lack of pricey equipment required.
In 2022, pickleball was named the official state sport of Washington.
The two touring organizations are the Association of Pickleball Professionals and the Professional Pickleball Association.
The professional league is Major League Pickleball, which recently picked up an investment from former New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees and Los Angeles Lakers owner Jim Buss, who purchased the Mad Drops, a team in the league.
Maxwell joined the USAOnlineSportsbooks team in 2019. He focuses on creating sports betting content that informs and educates. He focuses on the NBA, the NFL, College Football and Basketball, and whatever else comes across his desk.