Record 31.4 million Americans to bet on Super Bowl

L.A. Rams defeat San Francisco 49ers 20-17 to advance to Super Bowl LVI
A view shows signage outside NFL Media headquarters next to SoFi Stadium, host venue for Super Bowl LVI, in Inglewood, California, U.S., January 30, 2022. REUTERS/Bing Guan

Feb 8 (Reuters) - A record 31.4 million Americans plan to bet a combined $7.6 billion on Sunday's Super Bowl matchup between the hometown Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals, the American Gaming Association said on Tuesday.

The number of Americans planning to bet on the NFL's title game, which is the biggest U.S. TV event of the year, is up 35% from 2021 while the estimated record value of wagers being bet is a 78% jump from last year, according to the casino industry group.

Driving the numbers is the fact that compared to last year's Super Bowl between Tampa Bay and Kansas City, 45 million more Americans can legally wager on this year's game in their home state where sports betting has since become legal.

Arizona, Connecticut, Louisiana, Maryland, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming have legalized sports betting in the past year, bringing the total number of states with legal sports betting to 30 plus Washington, D.C.

"The results are clear: Americans have never been more interested in legal sports wagering," AGA Chief Executive Bill Miller said in a news release.

"The growth of legal options across the country not only protects fans and the integrity of games and bets, but also puts illegal operators on notice that their time is limited."

The AGA also predicts the number of Americans who place traditional sports wagers online, at a retail sportsbook or with a bookie will rise 78% to 18.2 million while casual betting as part of an office pool or squares contest, will jump 23% to 18.5 million.

Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto Editing by Toby Davis

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