HELENA -- Sports Bet Montana unveiled their kiosks shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic made it's arrival in Montana and subsequently saw no bets placed after locations with kiosks were forced to close down in accordance with Governor Bullock's stay-at-home order.
Now as life in Montana is starting to get back to normal, sports and sports betting are beginning to see a resurgence as well. Though, according to Jennifer McKee, communications director for the Montana Lottery, the bets being placed aren't on sports they expected to see.
"We're seeing [Montanans] participate in Sports Bet Montana, kind of exactly as we thought they would. Not necessarily in the specific sports that we thought they would, but with a certain kind of enthusiasm," said McKee.
Through Sports Bet Montana, over $30,000 has been wagered on mixed martial arts by bettors, either at a kiosk or through their mobile device at a licensed location.
Behind MMA is baseball with over $21,000 wagered, but the wagers being placed aren't on Major League Baseball, which hasn't returned to action since MLB suspended play on March 12. Instead bettors are placing wagers on games in the Korean Baseball Organization which returned on May 5.
According to the data provided by Sports Bet Montana since the unveiling of the system, $95,135 have been wagered across 11 different sports.