The world of sports betting and gaming is a large and diverse one, filled with colorful personalities, big events, and fascinating stories. If you’re looking to get involved in the industry, then who are the big names you should know about? We’ve compiled a list of some of the most influential people in the world of sports betting and gaming, starting with Jimmy Kimmel and moving all the way up to Tiger Woods.
Who Is Jimmy Kimmel?
Host, writer, and artist Jimmy Kimmel is best known for being the host of the Comedy Central show “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”. Considered one of the most influential people in the world of sports betting and gaming, Kimmel started his career in show business in the mid-1990s, hosting small TV shows geared towards a juvenile audience. In 1998, he moved to the big leagues, hosting the Emmy-winning “Sports Tonight” on ESPN. Since then, he’s held the prestigious position of ESPN’s lead host, hosting multiple editions of the popular “Monday Night Countdown” and “Sunday Night Live!”.
Kimmel is often credited with popularizing the weekly Thursday night “Superbowl,” which became an obsession for many Americans during his reign as host. In fact, the Jimmy Kimmel Live! show now enjoys such a large following that it has become the target of many imitators, including “The Best Weekend Ever” on CBS and “Match Game King” on NBC. Even “The Price Is Right” knows how to pull a prank on Kimmel now and then!
Who Is Joe Mantony?
Joe Mantony is one of the pioneers of the sports betting and gaming industry, co-founding BetOnline in 1995 and founding the company that would become WIN Inc. in 1998. He is also co-founder of the Global eSports Association (GEA), which promotes and regulates the gaming industry around the world. From a young age, Joe was fascinated by sports and gambling, eventually pursuing a career in the industry. As a child, he was a semi-professional baseball player in the Chicago area. After graduating from college, he started off as a professional gambler in Atlantic City, New Jersey before moving to Colorado, where he became a professional poker player. Later, he settled in Biloxi, Mississippi, where he became the head of a marketing agency, specializing in the sports and gaming industries.
Through his company, WIN Inc., Joe Mantony is involved in the management and operation of sportsbooks, online casinos, and poker rooms around the world. He is a prolific writer on the topic of sports and gambling, serving as the host of the Bachelor of Gaming and Sports at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN. He also serves on the board of trustees of the American Gaming Association (AGA) and is a member of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) and the American Advertising Federation (AAF).
Who Is Tiger Woods?
Tiger Woods is one of the greatest golfers of all time, winning 14 Grand Slam tournaments, 18 Masters tournaments, and 5 U.S. Opens, giving him more championships than anyone else in the history of the sport. He is often credited with inventing the modern-day ‘Golf Daddy’ image, which propelled him to the top of the sports world. At the height of his career, Woods was earning $20 million per year, making him one of the wealthiest athletes in the world. He still holds the title of the highest-paid athlete in the history of sports, having earned a record $100 million in endorsements in 2016 alone.
With all of this money and fame, you’d think that Woods would be content to sit back and enjoy the ride. But, that would be a mistake. Tiger Woods is always looking for the next big thing, the next shiny object to invest in, and he’s rarely shy about showing off his famous wealth. As a result, Tiger Woods has appeared in numerous Forbes Worthings, appearing on the list in 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2016, currently landing him at number 11 on the list of the 100 most valuable athletes in the world. Woods has also been involved in a number of business pursuits, becoming an angel investor in a number of high profile startups, including Airbnb, Houzz, and Postmates. In addition, Woods created the Tiger Woods Discovery Channel Shorts Film Festival, which premieres the best short sports films every year at the Cannes Film Festival and the Tiger Woods Discovery Kids Creative Lab in Los Angeles, California. In 2018 alone, Woods’ net worth is projected to be around $500 million, making him one of the most followed and influential athletes in the world.
Who Is Donald Trump?
Perhaps the most unconventional and controversial figure in the entire sports and gambling industry is President Donald J. Trump. Considered one of the most influential men in the world of politics and business, Trump has made a number of bold and brash statements regarding the sports and gambling industries, both in person and on Twitter. For example, when discussing the NFL, a sport he enjoys watching, Trump has said, “For people watching at home, I think it’s offensive. It’s like watching a ‘Boys Club’ movie, where all the guy’s talk about is sex and money.” And, regarding the NBA, another sport he enjoys, Trump has stated: “I think that the [NBA]’s got a real problem. You can’t play basketball in [the U.S.S.R.] anymore. It’s all about money.”
But, while the controversial president may have alienated many people in the sports world, he has also maintained quite a large following, particularly among male sports fans. As a result, he has many allies in the sports betting and gaming community, who see him as a fearless leader for a more ‘manly’ brand of capitalism.
What Is The Future Of Sports And Gambling?
The future of sports and gambling seems exciting, with several new technologies emerging that will change the industry forever. Blockchain technology, for example, allows for the secure storage of data, while creating an immutable record, removing the need for third-party verification and improving both the efficiency and security of interactions within the industry. Similarly, AI (Artificial Intelligence) is being used to create a more entertaining and immersive sports betting and gaming experience, while also removing the need for human interaction in certain situations.
Many industry insiders believe that blockchain technology will see the greatest disruption in the sports and gambling industry, changing the way bets are placed and data is stored, while AI will enhance the overall user experience.
Where Can I Follow The Sports And Gambling Industry?
If you’re looking for reputable sources to keep an eye on, then you can’t do much worse than following the US Open and PGA Tour. The US Open, a ten-week golf tournament, is the third-largest sports championship in the world, attracting an international audience, with fans coming from all over the globe. The PGA Tour, the top professional golf tour, features the career camebacks of some of the greatest golfers in history, attracting an audience of millions of fans worldwide.
For those who enjoy following the World Cup and NBA season, the Premier League and National Basketball Association, respectfully, are also fantastic places to track the sports and gambling industries.