It may seem a bit odd that Netflix has had a big impact on the sporting world, but when Drive to Survive showed everyone that there was a lot more to Formula 1 than just driving around in a circle, a new fanbase erupted.
And now we've gotten the same treatment with Full Swing, with the series shooting to turn total newcomers into passionate golf fans.
There are a couple of interesting ways the Netflix show can impact golf betting directly as well, and a lot of that has to do with the structure of the show and to focus on the individuals rather than bigger stories like LIV Golf or the Majors.
Sportsbook reviewer, Bookies Bonuses, has noticed a huge increase in the number of golf specific bonuses being showcased by betting agencies in the US, highlighting the golfers rather than the tournament.
This is almost certainly done with the expectation that people who watch the show may look to wager on the next big tournament, and more likely on a specific golfer they came to like over the series.
The intensely likable family man, Tony Finau, of course saw his fair share of the limelight in Full Swing, and has already been featured alongside co-star (and multiple PGa Tour Major winner) Justin Thomas in recent promotional offers on sites like FanDuel.
But it’s not just about sportsbooks showing off the golfers, more fans overall means more potential bettors, as can clearly be seen from the influx of fans from Drive to Survive. The global betting brand Entain (BetMGM, Borgata, etc.) stated that they have seen a 50% increase in bettors wagering on F1 since 2018, which coincides directly with the buzz around the show.
But can golf wagering really blow up like this? Maybe it already has.
It may come as a surprise, but golf is already one of the most popular sports in the US to bet on, with the 2022 Masters coming in as the second most wagered on event behind the Super Bowl.
While it’s hard to imagine the ‘Netflix Effect’ can help the popularity of golf overtake the NFL, it seems pretty likely there will be a clear focus on golf as the go-to sport to bet on over the summer, especially during the offseason of other major sports.
Given the still fairly recent changes to the PGA Tour format, and effort to make the bigger tournaments, well, bigger - this is an exciting time to see how the perception of golf changes, and what it means to the betting landscape of an already popular gambling sport.
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