E-Sports, Virtual Sports Dominate Bitcoin Sportsbooks
Today we’ll be talking a bit about what types of sporting events are still presenting wagering opportunities, and taking a look at two relatively new fields of “sports” that happen to be booming in popularity: e-Sports and Virtual Sports.
E-Sports, Virtual Sports Dominating Bitcoin Sportsbooks
As you are likely already aware, several professional sporting leagues have shut down during the coronavirus scare, leaving sports fanatics (and gamblers) without some much-needed entertainment. Billions of dollars of revenue from sporting events have already been lost as thousands of professional athletes find themselves temporarily out of the job, alongside hundreds of millions of workers worldwide.
Among the casualties are the following leagues and events:
NHL: America’s hockey season was postponed on March 12th with players directed to self-quarantine until April 15th. Although the states of many teams require mandatory lockdowns until April 30th, the hockey league is looking to resume games some point in May, potentially completing a normal season as well as playoffs.
NBA: This was the hardest-hit league in America, with a total of 16 players testing positive for covid-19 between the dates of March 11th and March 28th. The NBA officially announced the suspension of their season on March 11th. This will last at least until June, with the season coming to a close in August.
MLB: The American Baseball season has also been impacted, with the decision to cancel the remainder of Spring Training games announced on March 12th. In addition, the 2020 regular season will be delayed by at least two weeks, with Opening Day originally scheduled for March 26th.
AFL: The 2020 Australian Football League season has been postponed until May 31st at the earliest, with the AFL match between the St Kilda Saints and the Port Adelaide Power scheduled to take place on May 31st in China being moved to Melbourne.
2020 Summer Olympics: Scheduled to take place in Tokyo, Japan this year, the Summer Olympics have been cancelled for the first time since 1944. However, the International Olympic Committee and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have worked on an agreement to ensure the Olympics will still be held next year (2021), from July 23rd to August 8th.
Tennis: In addition to the International Tennis Federation (ITF) postponing 900 tournaments across all of its circuits, the Wimbledon 2020 championships have also been cancelled, for the first time since World War II. As a result of the professional tennis tour suspending its events until June 7, the ATP and WTA rankings will remain frozen until further notice.
Soccer: FIFA has recommended that all matched in April be postponed, UEFA has postponed their UEFA Euro 2020 event for 12 months, and various European and Asian leagues have also postponed their seasons. On March 10th, England’s Premier League decided to suspend matches until sometime in April due to several players contracting covid-19, a decision that will likely be extended into May. In North America, the CONCACAF Champions League has been suspended indefinitely.
Others: Many other sports and leagues have had their competitions interrupted, including those involving mixed martial arts, professional wrestling, motor sports, cricket, darts, golf, horse racing, snooker, volleyball, table tennis, and lacrosse.
In effect, every major sports league (besides those starting in the fall, such as the NFL) has had their events interrupted because of the coronavirus. This is a problem because the usual entertainment that millions (perhaps billions) could sorely use right about now has been severely interrupted.
In spite of the coronavirus epidemic, and for better or for worse, there are still a number of sporting events that are still taking place around the world, and which can still be wagered upon using BTC at crypto sportsbooks.
One particular category of sporting event that currently has the opportunity to become more popular than ever is the world of e-sports. The idea of professional competition between video gamers is nothing new and has gained significant popularity over the last decade. In the past few years, it has slowly become more and more of a staple among crypto bookmakers, with most major online bookies listing various e-sporting events. Some of the biggest e-sports leagues revolve around games like Dawn of the Ancients (DOTA), Counter-Strike, FIFA, League of Legends, and Starcraft.
Why are e-sports ripe for expansion in an atmosphere when everything else is shutting down? Well, for one thing, competitors don’t need to be in actual physical proximity of each other in order to compete. While e-sports teams themselves usually sit near each other in order to make communication easier, they can certainly still function as a team with the recommended 6 feet of “social distancing” between themselves. Their competition could be in a different country or even on a different continent altogether, but because the match field (or battlefield) is virtual, all that is actually required is a stable internet connection.
Another reason why e-sports are picking up in popularity during the world’s various quarantine and lockdown periods is the fact that they can be viewed online — which is the only place where everybody is these days. Some television stations (like ESPN) have even started carrying e-sporting events, for those who would rather watch them on a bigger screen away from their computer. Pretty much every e-sports event can be viewed online for free, meaning you don’t need some sort of special membership or subscription in order to watch them. Thanks to the internet and bitcoin, it is possible to make a wager on an e-sport from a crypto bookie and watch the competition online, never having to leave your computer to enjoy the entire experience.
Virtual sports are another enterprise that has been taking off during the covid-19 crisis, which are computer-based simulations of classic sporting events such as basketball, soccer, football, and baseball. Like e-sports, these events can be watched live and in real time from within the sportsbook, with the main difference being both teams are simulated by a computer and not human-driven. The game mechanics and odds presented in virtual sports are fine tuned to produce the most realistic outcomes possible based on the personnel and dynamics of each team.
Some of the online bookmakers we recommend that accept BTC and offer e-sports or virtual sports include:
- Soccer: Simulated Reality League (simulations of Premier League, La Liga, and Bundesliga matches), FIFA, E-Leagues (England Cyber Stars League, Cyber World Cup)
- Basketball: simulated NBA games
- Counter-Strike (15 leagues)
- Dota 2 (11 leagues)
- FIFA (16 leagues)
- King of Glory (2 leagues)
- League of Legends (9 leagues)
- Overwatch (1 league)
- Rainbow Six (1 league)
- Starcraft (2 leagues)
- Soccer (FIFA Live Arena, eFIFA LigaPro)
- Football (NFL 2020 Sims)
- Basketball (eNBA)
- CounterStrike: Global Offensive (CS:GO Flashpoint, Loot Cup 2020, Svenska EN, ESL Meisterschaft)
- Riot Lol (TCL)
- Dota2 (ESL One, Epic Origins League)
- Rainbow Six (Rainbow 6 Pro League)
- Overwatch (OWL)
- StarCraft 2 (WardiTV)
Against the recommendations of numerous authorities on health and virology, a few sports leagues are still holding actual live events. Some of these (such as table tennis) don’t put the athletes in close contact with one another, and many of them are being conducted without a physical audience. In case you are wondering what they are and where to find them, we’ve made a list of what the 3 aforementioned bitcoin sportsbooks is currently offering.
- Soccer (Belarus – Vysshaya Liga/Pervaya Liga/Belarus Cup, Nicaragua – Primera Division, Tajikistan – Tajik League)
- Basketball (Chinese Taipei)
- Tennis (Exhibition)
- Ice Hockey (Russia – Liga Pro)
- Table Tennis (Ukraine World Cup, Setka Cup, Liga Pro)
- Darts (Czech Tipsport Premiere League)
- Soccer (Belarus – Vysshaya Liga/Pervaya Liga/Belarus Cup, Nicaragua – Primera Division, Tajikistan – Tajik League, International – 13 leagues, Venezuela – Segunda Division)
- Tennis (Exhibition)
- MMA (Alexander Hernandez vs. Omar Morales)
- Ice Hockey (Liga Pro)
- Table Tennis (Russia – Liga Pro, Setka Cup, Ukraine Win Cup)
- Soccer (Belarus – Vysshaya Liga, Nicaragua – Primera Division, Tajikistan – Championship)
- Table Tennis (6 leagues)
- Hockey (Russia – League Pro Moscow)
- Tennis (Exhibition: Pro Series, Latvian Sky Tennis, League Pro)
- Horse Racing (Fonner Park, Will Rogers Downs)
- Golf (Arrowhead Classic)
- Volleyball (International: King-Volleyball 3×3, Ural League Women)
As the 3 sportsbooks mentioned above are considered to be trustworthy leaders of the industry, we have no problem recommending them to our readers. They all have different strengths and cater to different types of players. For sports bettors based in the U.S., we highly recommend Bovada. For those not based in the U.S. but are looking to place large-sized wagers, we recommend Cloudbet. For those on a smaller budget and located just about anywhere in the world, we recommend FortuneJack.
For more bitcoin and crypto sportsbook options, please check out our Casinos page.
If you have any questions about finding a dependable bitcoin sportsbook or how to find a sportsbook with the event you are looking for, please feel free to let us know in the comment box below, and we’ll be sure to get back to you as soon as we can!