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The March Madness logo is seen on seats prior to the second round of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.
The March Madness logo is seen on seats prior to the second round of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images via AFP.

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement released its March 2023 legal sports betting report, which showed that bettors in the Garden State came out in droves to place a wager on the NCAA basketball tournament.

The sports betting handle in New Jersey for March represented a month-over-month increase, though sports betting activity was actually down from the previous year. However, thanks to a healthy hold rate for New Jersey sports betting providers, revenues soared both month-over-month and year-over-year.

New Jersey's handle for March 2023

New Jersey sportsbooks took in just under $1.03 billion in March 2023, returning the state to $1-billion handle territory, likely for the last time until the NFL season resumes in September.

The $1.03-billion March 2023 handle represented a 21% increase from the $847.4 million in bets taken in during what was a disappointing February. New Jersey has now eclipsed $1 billion in five of the last six months.

Of that total, $975 million came from the state's mobile providers, while $50.6 million was spent at New Jersey's retail sports betting facilities.

Year-over-year, New Jersey's sports betting activity was down from the very successful March 2022 reporting period, when $1.12 billion was taken in by New Jersey sportsbooks - 8.4% more than was reported last month.

March 2023’s totals bring the New Jersey lifetime sports betting handle - since the 2018 Supreme Court’s decision to overturn its blanket ban on sports betting - to $36.86 billion, nearly $7 billion more than the next highest producing state, Nevada.

Revenues tell the real story

Bettors in the New Jersey market weren't especially successful during March 2023. The rash of upsets during the March Madness tournament hurt bettors but provided a spike in revenues for New Jersey sportsbooks, which are reporting their third-best month ever in terms of profits.

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement reported $93.04 million in revenues in March 2023 thanks to a healthy 9% hold rate for the state's books. That's a 70.3% increase from the $54.6 million in profits from February. That figure also represents a 40.1% year-over-year increase from $66.4 million in profits a year ago. Declining New Jersey sportsbook promos dollar values may be a factor in the increasing profit as well.

March's totals took New Jersey sportsbook profits to $220 million for the year - almost 40% higher than was reported for the first three months of 2022.

Meadowlands dominates, basketball the most popular draw

Individual sportsbooks in New Jersey aren’t broken down for reporting purposes. Atlantic City casinos and participating racetracks in the state hold the licenses in New Jersey, and each has a number of “skins” or partnership deals with sports betting providers.

Unsurprisingly, it was Meadowlands Racetrack and its partnerships with FanDuel Sportsbook, PointsBet, and SuperBook that led the way in terms of sportsbook profits for March 2023 with $36.3 million. Resorts Digital, which consists of DraftKings Sportsbook and FoxBet generated the second-best March profits with $30.7 million.

Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, thanks to their own branded sportsbook and BetMGM, made $8.1 million in profits last month.

As far as sports go, basketball ruled the handle and revenue figures in New Jersey in March 2023, with $534.7 million being wagered on hoops, while $236 million was bet on parlays.

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