More States Are Approving Odds for the 2020 Nathan’s Hot Dog Contest

Last year, most states with legal sports betting refused to list odds for the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. New Jersey was front and center with this refusal.

However, things have changed heading into the 2020 competition as more states are approving odds for the Super Bowl of competitive eating. In a time where most pro sports leagues are still on the verge of coming back, the MLE’s top competition will certainly bring sportsbooks some much needed action.

Already an “Affirmed Sport”

While competitive eating contests may seem like a stretch to some, in reality, that couldn’t be further from the truth. It was the early 2000’s in which ESPN recognized this as an official sport and affirmed it with global coverage of the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest.

The Major League Eating, the sanctioning body for this contest and many other competitive eating competitions, has enjoyed their relationship with ESPN as they’ve seen their sport grow tremendously. MLE president Rich Shea commented on the deal with ESPN:

“ESPN had already affirmed us as a sport in the early 2000s. But, with legal betting, we are really now as legitimate as the NFL and the NBA.”

As for the three states that have given the go-ahead for the sport’s top competition, those are New Hampshire, Colorado, and New Jersey. Yes, the same NJ who banned the national hot dog contest last year. However, there is a caveat to New Jersey’s approval.

New Jersey Adds Their Own Stipulations

Once again, New Jersey doesn’t go with the flow of things as they’ve decided to add certain stipulations in order to allow wagers on this event. According to ESPN, the state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement released the following rules:

  • All betting must be stopped before the competition begins.
  • There will be no live wagering.
  • Sportsbooks can only offer odds on events that are directly tied to the competition.
  • There will be no prop bets other than ones related to the eating of hot dogs.

What Can First Time Bettors in These States Expect?

The 2020 Nathan’s Hot Dog Contest will feature the sport’s biggest stars in Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo. Like usual, it takes place on July 4th. However, with the health limitations in place, this event has been moved from the corner of Surf and Stillwell Avenues to an undisclosed indoor location.

First time bettors in these three states can expect a lot of action and a lot of fun. This year’s installment will feature the top men and women of the sport as both competitions will take place indoors.

In terms of where to place a bet, any sportsbook operating in the three states will be able to offer gambling for the event along with other online betting sites.

With that said DraftKings has an official partnership with Major League Eating and will be a primary source for betting action. DK will also feature a $25,000 dollar free to play contest in other states that don’t allow legalized sports betting, thanks to the new partnership.

DraftKings Ezra Kucharz, chief of business, publicly declared that the company is proud to be a partner with the MLE and that the national hot dog contest is an “iconic” tradition in the United States.

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site.

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