Esports keep getting more and more popular in Canada. Not only do Canadians love watching esports tournaments, but they also like betting on them. At the moment, esports betting is not possible in Canadian online sportsbooks. Instead, Canadians can only bet on esports at online sportsbooks like the ones from the list below.
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Is Esports Betting Legal in Canada?
In the past couple of years, esports betting has expanded from a small niche to a very popular activity. Everything started with gamers and video game fans, but over the years, it turned into a massive industry, now worth billions of dollars.
The reason behind the rapid growth of the esports betting business lies in the popularity of video games. The thing is that the number of esports fans – those who watch esports tournaments on a regular basis – is going up all the time. It’s expected that the number of esports fans will reach 646 million people by 2023 worldwide.
Not only is the number of esports fans increasing, but so is the number of bettors willing to put their money on such events. The growth of the esports betting industry is influenced by another reason – the legalization of online betting.
Canada is the latest in a long list of countries that have decided to make online betting legal and regulated. Although the process takes time, it’s safe to say that Canadians will be able to bet on esports in online sportsbooks with local licenses.
At the moment, Canadian bettors still can’t participate in esports betting in Canadian online sportsbooks. However, bettors do keep manage to find ways to place their wagers.
There won’t be a need for that in the near future, as the Canadian law regarding online sports betting changed recently. Canadian provinces will be able to make decisions for themselves and determine whether they will allow it on their territories.
How to Bet on Esports?
If you want to start with your esports betting adventure, the first thing to do is find a good and reliable sportsbook. After you’ve made your choice, it’s time to make an account, make a deposit, and start betting.
Betting on esports is quite similar to betting on traditional sporting events. What you ought to do is pick your bet, enter your stake, and confirm your wager.
Moneyline bet is the most common type of wager. How it works is that you put your money on the player/team you think will win.
Let’s take a look at other betting markets that are available at most esports betting sites:
- Outright Winner – You bet on the team you think is most likely to be an overall winner. If they win the tournament, you win the money!
- Over/Under – Here, you are focusing on statistics, e.g., combined scores, total kills, and similar. The goal is to guess whether the number is going to be Over or Under than the number set by the bookmaker.
- Region Winner – If the teams in the tournament are separated by region, you can place a bet on the exact location where the winner is from, e.g., Canada.
- Handicap Bet – This one is all about underdogs. The sportsbook gives those teams a small advantage in the form of point/kills/rounds. For example, an underdog in CS:GO could get an advantage of +5.5 kills, meaning that they mustn’t lose by more than 6 kills.
Know that the betting markets depend a lot on the type of the game. For example, in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, you can bet on First Blood and stuff like that. In PES, FIFA, or other sports video games, there’s no killing involved!
Canadian Esports Scene: Top Players, Teams & Events
The number of Canadian esports players is increasing constantly, especially among teenagers. Evidence of this is that several colleges have decided to launch their esports programs.
For example, Ontario’s Lambton College was the first college in North America to create an esports-oriented esports program. Durham College followed, setting up the first esports-oriented graduate certificate, Esports Business Management.
One of the reasons behind the growing popularity of esports in Canada is that there’s plenty of talent among Canadian players. The standout player is Artour Babaev a.k.a. Arteezy, who’s currently among the best Dota 2 players on the planet.
Famous for his roles of Carry and Solo Middle in Dota 2, Arteezy has already recorded over $2,3 million in earnings, despite being only in his early twenties.
Then, there’s Kurtis Ling, better known as Aui_2000, another Dota 2 player, whose earnings are also above $2 million. He is followed by Zayt (Williams Aubin), who is currently third on the list of highest-earners in Canadian esports. A Fortnite player, Zayt has already earned more than $1.2 million.
These guys succeeded on the international level, having previously conquered practically all local Canadian esports tournaments. Speaking of which, Lan ETS and DreamHacks are Canada’s top esports competitions.
Sure, those aren’t as attractive as those tournaments taking place south of the border, but the Canadian esports scene is increasing year by year. In recent years, we’ve seen an increase in the number of smaller esports tournaments, such as RedBull’s AdrenaLAN and EGLX.