2021 is going to be a pivotal year as the pandemic effects have ripped through the sporting industry leaving very little behind. It has exposed the business models that are built around packing stadiums with fans and paying athletes multi-millions to play for their teams. It means that all of the top sports have never lost so much money in a single year and it will result in many not being able to survive.
#1: LIMITED CROWDS
There will be limited crowds for almost all sporting events in the USA due to the attempt to stop the virus from spreading. With a vaccine now approved by the FDA, it will help to bring things under more control but it will not have an instant impact as people think. It takes a long-time to create and distribute vaccines so do not expect crowds back at sporting events until at the earliest the summer.
#2: ONLINE GROWTH IN SPORTS BETTING
During the lockdown sports betting companies such as PointsBet have reported a record number of new players signing up to the platform. The success was a result of the PointsBet sign up code that gave a free bet during the lockdown. The biggest growth has been in the one-stop shop gambling platforms as they were able to tempt sports bettors with casino games when sports were closed.
#3: PLAYERS PAID LESS
Sports players are going to have to take a large pay cut if many teams are going to survive the crisis presented by COVID. Without the crowds, the revenue generated is not enough to pay all costs and owners are seeking to attempt to soften the burden by getting players to take pay cuts. It will also result in fewer fees available for buying new players as many are struggling to keep their doors open.
#4: RECORD CLOSURES
Sadly 2021 is going to be the year of record closures and no one saw that coming. Due to tough competition in different sports, clubs have overstretched themselves and simply do not have the saving required to see them through this tough pandemic period. Several clubs that have been around for countless years are faced with closure if they are not able to get a bailout or renegotiate their debts.
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It is an uphill battle ahead for the sports industry as a whole and not just the USA. The pandemic is a global affair and not one country has escaped the economic disaster and heartache caused by COVID. We are going to enter a new era of sports once it is all over so hopefully, things can move forward and start something even better.
It is hard to predict what will happen in 2021 as no one saw what was coming this year. As we learn more about the virus and how to live in ways to try to keep it under control, things should start getting easier. One thing is for certain that if things do not improve then we could be on the verge of civil war and then sports will not matter a single bit.Back to the Sports Tech Newsfeed