Legal basketball bets are underway in Japan – NBA Sports


Japanese basketball fans may finally get the chance to legally bet on their favorite B-League team next year. In December of last year, an amendment law was enacted to include basketball in the Japanese sports lottery (Toto).

Japanese sports lottery (Toto)

The Japanese sports lottery is run by the Japan Sport Council (JSC) under the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. Lottery sales in 2020 were approximately 101.7 billion yen. Currently, Japanese sports lottery is limited to soccer, mainly in the J League. The only market available is pre-match results (win / draw / lose). As a result, the offerings are very limited compared to the following international betting sites: bet365, Is also gaining popularity in Japan. Soccer betting in Japan is not a sports betting but a lottery, and is legally regulated with the main purpose of promoting sports in general.

Sports lottery revenue is a source of funding for sporting events and competitions, training of athletes and instructors, and maintenance and improvement of local sports facilities. Therefore, the purchase of a sports lottery is considered a donation to funding to support and promote local sports in general, not just entertainment. In other words, Japanese soccer betting is aimed at people who just want to have a little more fun when watching a soccer match, but not at passionate gamblers.

B League betting legal options

Law amendment The inclusion of basketball is primarily aimed at increasing sales and securing a stable source of funding for subsidies. In anticipation of a decline in national sport subsidies after the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, the JSC working team was looking for ways to increase sales. The move also addresses the financial challenges facing the domestic sports market as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Under the amendment to add the B-League to the lottery, the available market will be expanded to include score, team rankings and tournament results in addition to match results (wins and losses).

This amendment to the Sports Lottery Act can be seen as a major step given the generally strict regulations on sports betting in Japan. The legal options for sports betting in the country are limited to public gambling (horse racing, boat racing, bicycle racing, auto racing) and sports lottery. All of these are legalized by the provisions of special law. Nevertheless, the domestic gambling business requires a high degree of public interest to justify and maintain its special legal status. As a result, the return set of Japanese gambling options will be significantly lower than that of overseas bookmakers. In other words, B-League betting in the form of sports lottery is less attractive in terms of returns than offshore betting sites.

B League promotion

Over the past few years, the expansion of the sports lottery, including other sports such as baseball, has been debated, and this time the B League was chosen. The B-League is currently undertaking bold structural reforms. Starting in the 2026-27 season, team promotion and demotion based on competition results will be abolished and a new way of categorizing according to the size of the club’s business will be introduced.according to Shinji Shimada, B-League Chairman, “We have a big goal to be the second-largest league in the world after the US professional NBA.” Participation in the B-League sports lottery also stimulates and boosts domestic interest in the league. Expected to do.

– NBA Sports

Legal basketball bets are underway in Japan Legal basketball bets are underway in Japan

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