ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — There’s still darts.
Or New Zealand cricket.
The fast-spreading coronavirus has led to an unprecedented slew of cancellations or suspensions of most major professional and college sports events in the U.S., particularly within the last 48 hours. Baseball, basketball, hockey, pro soccer and college basketball all announced they were either suspending or postponing the start of their seasons due to the virus and the advice of medical professionals to avoid large gatherings that could help further spread the disease.
The virus is a deadly serious concern that’s causing the cancellation of events worth untold millions of dollars, and is disrupting people’s lives in many ways. For those who routinely bet on sports, it has taken most of the action off the board.
“I feel a little empty inside,” said Jef Corrales, a retired marine who lives near Charlotte, North Carolina. “Now I don’t really have anything to talk about. As guys into sports, that’s how we communicate: ‘Who’d you bet on, why did you do that?’ I don’t know what else to do now.
“Since October, this is the first day I didn’t make a bet,” he said. “Actually, I did, but they got canceled.”
On Thursday, the major college conferences canceled their championship tournaments, including one game that made it to halftime before being abandoned. Hours later, the NCAA canceled its national championship tournaments for men and women.
In addition to the official bets, the NCAA Tournament is the nation’s largest unofficial gambling event. Millions of office pools are