Betting Is Coming. Batten Down The Hatches and Bid Farewell.
Beef on Wick seasoning, a Sabres mini pennate, some wing sauce (Buffalo and BBQ), and a patterned towel that now resides in my backpack because you should always have a towel (thanks Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy) are all I won last year betting on hockey.
The “Contest Of The Condiments” is an informal bet between my Buffalo framily and myself. The Canes beat the Sabres 2 games to 1 last year, so I won the aforementioned swag. Had I lost, Mike D’s BBQ Sauce and other North Carolina based products would have made their way to Buffalo as booty delivered to the victor as the spoils of war.
Governor. Roy Cooper officially legalized sports betting in North Carolina when he signed HB 347 into law on June 14, 2023 making in-person betting legal in January of 2024. I would look for betting stations in PNC with the recently announced renovations and there will be more off-site establishments setting up across the Tar Heel State soon. Folks will be traveling into North Carolina from Tennessee, Virginia, Georgia, and South Carolina to these bringing a wave of money that will be massively helpful to North Carolina’s economy.
Fantasy hockey leagues have been going on since the advent of the concept, and friendly wagers have gone on since pre-Clovis times. In-person betting is new, and will be interesting to see how it goes with hockey.
I for one am not really looking forward to it. And not for the reasons you might think.
Getting started back in the day with daily fantasy baseball at Fantasy Sports Dojo, I know what it takes to produce content for daily sports betting.
At first it was coffee and Copenhagen snuff to the point of acid reflux that melted my spittoon, and jitters when you tried to go to sleep. Then came arguments with strangers on social media, fights between us over texts, the inability to see a game on TV in a bar with a comment to the annoyance of those around you.
The guys I got involved in the business with were friends. I would work with both of them at different points in “the real world.” By the end of it all, the thought of offing the others and hiding the bodies where they couldn’t be found was a daily occurrence. I still only speak to one, the other I haven’t seen in years.
We got ousted (I’m still not sure why) from our own company, by a new member of the staff. He would take a good bit of the work we did and go on to create a sports betting behemoth.
And all that nastiness for what? So some guy sitting in his underwear, on a computer in his basement could make a killing by betting on our picks or yell at us on social media if he didn’t?
It will be the same with sports betting in North Carolina.
The Carolina Hurricanes won’t be immune. Canes social media will turn into a Thunderdome of arguments that make the recent dust up around TDA look like preschool children arguing over what cloud formation looks the most like a puppy. Anyone in the “fun”dit realm that starts making predictions will be lauded one week, and hung in effigy the next. Empires will be built and be torn down in the blink of an eye. As Buffalo Springfield sang “Step outta line, the man come and take you away.”
You wait and see.
It won’t be all bad. The tax revenue generated will be great for the state. Maybe season ticket prices will drop some, and we can go back to $5 Storm Brews at PNC.
However, the impending drumbeat of stupidity surrounding “which Canes Content sight to fade”, “who has the best picks” and “what Hurricane is the best value”, is why I am not particularly looking forward to sports betting in North Carolina. I for one will keep on truck as I have been. Writing what I want, how I want it. Like it, or lump it. Use it or lose it. Plenty of other folks will be jumping on the bandwagon. Just be ready
I have nothing against betting for chump change or BBQ sauce. If you want to bet, go for it. I won’t be stopping you. In fact, I have already worked up the terms of the “Contest of Condiments” for next year. But we all had better start preparing for the whirling poo dervish that will inevitably be kicked up when people start losing money because they read our content or listened to your podcast.