Is ESPN Gambling Away the Disney Brand on Sports Betting?

”Sports gambling, like cannabis retailing, has moved into the mainstream,“ one analyst says

Is Mickey Mouse allowed to wager on the ponies? It’s clear that attitudes (and laws) around sports gambling have changed in recent years, with networks and leagues welcoming in sportsbooks with open arms — you can’t go more than three commercials during an NFL game this fall without seeing an ad for sports betting.

But is the shift in public feeling toward sports gambling enough for Disney, which has spent decades carefully crafting a very wholesome image, to bet the Magic Kingdom on a growing market? After all, U.S. sports betting is on track to generate $4 billion in revenue this year, according to gambling industry analyst Chris Grove of the research firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming.

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Tim Baysinger

TV reporter • tim.baysinger@thewrap.com • Twitter: @tim_bays