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FanDuel Returns To Texas Fantasy Sports Market After Two-Year Absence

FanDuel has addressed one of the company’s biggest disadvantages in the ongoing battle against DraftKings by returning to the Texas daily fantasy sports market.

Texas no longer appears on FanDuel’s list of blocked states. Users on Rotogrinders have also reported being able to access FanDuel from Texas.

A FanDuel representative confirmed the decision via email to Legal Sports Report:

“Considering a variety of factors related to the operation of daily fantasy sports in Texas, we have re-entered the market, while the issue is being resolved by the state.”

Move evens up the competitive map

FanDuel’s decision effectively evens the competitive map for daily fantasy sports in the US market.

While FanDuel exited Texas in May of 2016 following questions concerning the legality of DFS in the state, DraftKings launched a legal challenge and remained in the market.

That case was recently closed without prejudice, with no finding of legality on the status of DFS operators. Legal Sports Report also contacted the AG’s office, which indicated that nothing had changed on its end regarding the legality of DFS in the state.

That left DraftKings with a significant advantage, as Texas represents nearly nine percent of the total US DFS market by population, and more in terms of participation, according to research from Eilers & Krejcik Gaming.

View a list of what states fantasy sports sites still don’t serve here.

Did sports betting pressure play a role?

With both DraftKings and FanDuel pivoting toward sports betting in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to gut PASPA, it’s easy to view FanDuel’s decision as a long-term play to secure share in what would be a significant market for legal sports betting in Texas.

DraftKings has launched an online sportsbook in New Jersey, secured a partnership in New York, and moved to enter the West Virginia market.

FanDuel has opened a land-based sportsbook in New Jersey with a mobile book to follow,  announced partnerships in New York and West Virginia, and entered into a partnership with Boyd Gaming.

Texas would be the second-largest legal sports betting market in the U.S., according to Eilers & Krejcik Gaming forecasts.

There is little expectation that sports betting will come quickly to Texas, as the state has historically resisted nearly all attempts to introduce regulated gambling. But the rapid expansion of sports betting across other states does suggest that sports betting may not play by the same set of political rules as other forms of gambling.

Image credit: StockPhotoAstur / Shutterstock.com

Chris Grove :Chris is the publisher of LegalSportsReport.com and OnlinePokerReport.com. Grove also serves as a consultant to various stakeholders in the regulated market for online gambling in the United States.