LegalSportsBetting Brief: Governors Advocate For Sports Betting 1/12/2021

  • New York, Connecticut, and Kentucky Governors all want to see some form of legal sports betting for their states in 2021.
  • Puerto Rico has introduced a bill to launch their legal sports wagering industry that was made legal two years ago while Massachusetts will be trying to legalize sportsbooks in their 2021 session.
  • Iowa and Colorado launch new mobile sportsbook applications, continuing to expand the markets in their states.
  • MGM Resorts makes another offer for a buyout of Entain after being rejected last week.

NEW YORK – The world of sports betting never stops. From the legal aspects to wagering and everything in between, it’s constantly moving. This week was especially significant as multiple Governors came forward to express their desire to have legal sports wagering industries in their states.

These states would be New York for mobile sportsbooks and Connecticut and Kentucky introducing the market in any form.

Puerto Rico is also finally trying to get their legal sports gaming industry off of the ground after it was made legal in 2019 and Massachusetts will be trying for the legalization of the pastime through bills in its 2021 legislative session.

In other moves, new sports betting platforms have opened in Iowa and Colorado, enriching the markets for both states. And MGM Resorts tried again in their quest to acquire Entain which would make BetMGM, the sportsbook application the two companies share, under the sole ownership of MGM Resorts.

Governors In NY, CT, and KY All Back Legal Sports Betting Measures In 2021

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has publicly spoken in favor of legal mobile sportsbooks for the Empire State in 2021. With New York in need of revenue to help ease some of the major financial burden caused by the outbreak of COVID-19, Cuomo has decided that mobile sportsbook legalization would be a great option.

More discussions will take place in the New York State Legislature as current proposed legislation on the topic differs from the Governor’s vision for the industry.

Over in Connecticut, Governor Ned Lamont wants sports betting legalized for the constituents of his state. The Governor has said that neighboring states already allow legal sports wagers to take place which is all money lost for Connecticut as residents will travel to bet at these sportsbooks or use other outlets to gamble on the games such as offshore internet sports gaming sites.

Lamont would like to see legislation pass in 2021 that will allow Connecticut some form of a legal sports betting industry to keep these potential profits within the state.

Down in Kentucky, on-trend with the other Governors in the nation backing legal sports wagering industries, Governor Andy Beshear wants to see the pastime made legal during the 2021 legislative session.

Beshear announced the need for a legalized gaming market in the Bluegrass State as they’re at a disadvantage next to other states that allow the activity. With the number of people in Kentucky that already engage in gambling on sporting events, the Governor believes its time for the state to make the market a legal one so that it’s not only safer for the consumer but the economy in Kentucky will have gained a new revenue stream as well.

Puerto Rico Takes Two Steps Forward For Legal Sports Wagering & Massachusetts Takes Two Steps Back

Puerto Rico has had legal sports betting since 2019 but no industry has launched since its legalization. A new bill is coming to light known as Project 1534 that will include esports not mentioned in the 2019 law and have both retail and mobile sportsbooks available.

With these new details, it shouldn’t be much longer before Puerto Rico will officially unveil their legal sports wagering market to the public. Of course, the new bill needs to receive the required approvals in the legislature but this does not seem to pose a problem among policymakers and looks as though it will be more of a formality.

Massachusetts had a lot of promise to get sports betting legalized in 2020 but the pastime failed to be included in the economic development bill that was finalized last week. Although this may seem like a failure, it looks to be more like a delay of the inevitable.

Governor Charlie Baker wants legal sports betting in Massachusetts and even included it in his 2021 budget proposal. Lawmakers omitted it from the proposal but it has been said they’ve included it in the 2022 proposal which means the 2021 legislative session in Massachusetts should see a bill receive passage to make sports gaming legal in the Commonwealth.

New Sportsbook Platforms Launch In Iowa & Colorado

Iowa has two new sportsbooks through BetMGM and PointsBet mobile applications. These two new operators opened in the Hawkeye State just in time to celebrate the end of in-person registration.

Now, sports bettors in Iowa can join mobile sports betting applications completely through their devices anywhere in the state without needing to go to a retail location first. The sports wagering market in Iowa just got better for sports bettors statewide who will now have access to gamble on sports matchups with two of the top names in the sports betting world with the click of a button.

SuperBook has rolled out their mobile app in Colorado becoming the Centennial State’s 17th mobile sportsbook in its ever-expanding market. With more and more operators launching in Colorado, the state has become one of the top five in the nation as far as handle and sports wagering activity is concerned.

The rate of growth is remarkable considering the sports betting industry in Colorado is less than a year old. With the addition of SuperBook, these numbers are expected to surge even further, making the Centennial State a true competitor in the country for gambling on sports.

MGM’s Offer For An Entain Buyout Was Rejected & Reintroduced All Within A Week

Entain Plc declined an offer of $11.1 billion by MGM Resorts last week in an attempt by MGM to purchase the company outright. Entain and MGM are business partners, having created the sports wagering application BetMGM together.

Entain believes the sum of $11.1 billion is too small a price considering the future growth of the sports betting industry in the United States. If they were to have accepted the deal, they could be leaving much more money on the table through future profits made with BetMGM.

A week after having their offer turned down, MGM Resorts raised the stakes by $1 billion more to total $12.1 billion as their price tag for acquiring Entain. IAC, owning 12% of MGM Resorts, is behind the added $1 billion. They see this deal as a terrific move for MGM Resorts to streamline and make a better product of BetMGM for sports bettors in the United States to use.

There is no word yet as to whether Entain will entertain the idea of selling to MGM now that they’ve upped their price in what will be their third attempt of trying to obtain the company as their own.

Coming Up This Week

Entain’s CEO Shay Segev will relinquish his duties at the company to move to a higher paying job with the DAZN platform. It’s speculated that MGM Resorts will once again raise their price to buyout Entain and with their CEO leaving, some believe it’s the best time to capitalize on the purchase.

However, those at Entain say that Segev’s departure will have no impact on the future of the company or any final decisions made about the offer made by MGM.

South Dakota’s newly legal sports betting industry in the town of Deadwood may stay in Deadwood. The people of South Dakota were excited by the prospect of a future mobile sports betting market statewide with the introduction of sportsbooks in Deadwood but new legislation aims to keep all gambling on sporting events within the city limits at retail locations.

Senate Bill 44 was filed to keep sports betting confined to Deadwood and the South Dakota Legislature convened for the 2021 session on Tuesday. No date has been set to hear the bill on the floor.

David Hawk, a congressman in Tennessee is filing a bill that would put 80% of the revenue gained through the online sports betting market of Tennessee into funding the education system for grades K-12.

Tennessee is the only state in the nation that has a purely online and mobile sports wagering industry. The revenue made from the market is put toward higher education but Hawk would like to see funds go to schools that really need it like those that teach students K-12 who are trying to get back into the classroom after COVID-19 shutdowns.

News tags: Andrew Cuomo | Andy Beshear | BetMGM | Charlie Baker | Colorado | Connecticut | Coronavirus pandemic | COVID-19 | David Hawk | Deadwood | Entain | IAC | Iowa | Kentucky | Massachusetts | MGM Resorts | Ned Lamont | New York | PointsBet | Project 1534 | Puerto Rico | Senate Bill 44 | Shay Segev | South Dakota | SuperBook | Tennessee

Christina Monroe

Christina has been writing for as long as she can remember and does dedicated research on the newly regulated sports betting market. She comes from a family of sports lovers that engage in friendly bets from time to time. During the winter months, you can find Christina baking cookies and beating the entire staff at Mario Kart…the N64 version of course.

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