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US – NBA to discuss sportsbetting regulation at GiGse

By - 8 April 2015

The National Basketball Association (NBA) will provide its perspective on the evolving US sports betting sector at GiGse later this month in San Francisco, California.

Dan Spillane, the NBA’s Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, will feature in a session entitled ‘understanding the evolving stance of sports leagues on legalization of sportsbetting’.

The session, which will be moderated by Jeff Ifrah, a Partner at Ifrah Law PLLC, will be highly anticipated after the NBA’s Commissioner, Adam Silver, declared his support for a change in the laws on sportsbetting late last year.

“The NBA is the first professional league in the US to say that sportsbetting should be legalised,” Mr. Ifrah said.

“This is hugely important because until recently, the leagues have traditionally been strong opponents of such legislation.

“If the NBA can lead the way for the other leagues to understand the importance of such a breakthrough, the legalisation of sportsbetting and the protection of consumers and the game may soon become a reality.”

The session will focus on the diversity of positions on the matter from various sports leagues and will address the concerns and potential benefits of legal sportsbetting whilst attempting to explain the link between sports integrity and the regulated market.

The session will include a range of viewpoints, including pre-recorded interviews with key players that have been produced exclusively for GiGse. Mr. Ifrah’s extensive education and experience in the law and history of gaming will bring further depth to the discussion.

“I will be asking participants why regulated sportsbetting is the best path forward for the industry as well as for the US more specifically,” Mr. Ifrah said. “Traditional arguments in opposition generally point to so-called ‘integrity of the game’ concerns. I will interview members of the English Premier League (EPL) who can speak to this particular issue most forcefully. I will also speak to leading US legislators about what is necessary to regulate and licence sports betting in the US. We will also discuss what model of regulation is most likely to work in the US and what role if any the US sports leagues will have in such regulation. Only the most important questions will be examined regarding these key issues, with the answers coming from a kaleidoscope of perspectives – from an NBA representative, to key US legislative decision makers, to EPL league managers around the globe.”

The session will take place on Tuesday, April 21 from 10.00-10.45. GiGse will take place at the Hyatt Regency from April 20 to 22.

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