DOVER, Del. -- For the first time since the Supreme Court overturned a federal ban, a state has launched sports betting.
It was New Jersey's case, which sought to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of last month, opening the floodgates for states to administer their own sports gambling operations.
Delaware was ready, having been grandfathered to offer parlay betting during the federal ban. The state started offering parlay cards through the state lottery in 2009 and built sportsbooks within its casinos while waiting for this day.
Three Delaware-based casinos -- Dover Downs, Delaware Park and Harrington Raceway -- began offering single-game wagering Tuesday on MLB, NBA, NFL and the World Cup. Other sports that eventually will be offered include NHL, golf and college football.
Gamblers will be allowed to bet on a team for up to $1,000. Once a bet on a side exceeds that guideline, a bettor has to wait until the amount is approved by the administrating company, in Delaware's case William Hill, according to Vernon Kirk, the director of the Delaware Lottery.
The risk manager's job, Kirk said, is to make the call based on the bettor's previous history.
Research firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming projects that sports betting in Delaware would be worth at least $23.1 million to the state annually and as much as $49.6 million including online. Kirk said the state intends to offer an internet and mobile product, but first wanted to focus on getting the physical sportsbook product launched.
Tuesday's announcement at Dover Downs was greeted by more officials with the state than gamblers.
One gambler who did show up was Charles Burrell, 33, of Dover. He was there four hours before the first bets could be placed to check out the scene.
"It's a great thing for a lot of people," said Burrell, who bet $20 on the Washington Nationals to beat the Tampa Bay Rays by at least two runs Tuesday night and $20 on the Cavaliers to be ahead at the half in Wednesday night's Game 3 of the NBA Finals in Cleveland.
"A lot of people talk about football because of the parlay cards previously available in the state, but you have to wait so long. Baseball can be really profitable."
Burrell was giddy just talking about the possibility of placing a legal bet in his town.
"I did not think this day would happen," Burrell said. "It had so many hiccups and it was dead, and then it came from out of nowhere."