Louisiana Sports Betting Cleared For Sunday Launch

Posted on October 29, 2021
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Written By on October 29, 2021

Louisiana sports betting is on its way with the first commercial casinos in the state receiving their licenses.

Louisiana Gaming Control Board Chairman Ronnie Johns signed the LA sports betting licenses for four casinos Friday. Those casinos are:

  • Harrah’s New Orleans (Caesars Sportsbook)
  • Horseshoe Casino (Caesars Sportsbook)
  • L’Auberge Casino (Penn National Gaming)
  • Boomtown Casino (Penn National Gaming)

With Johns’ signature, retail sportsbooks at those four locations can open Sunday morning. The Louisiana State Police are still reviewing nine licenses, Johns said.

“It was a good day, excited that we got something started,” Johns told LSR Friday afternoon. “This morning the state police sent over the recommendation to license these four casinos. We’re moving forward with the outstanding applications and hopefully, within the next few days, we’ll roll out another batch.”

Which LA sportsbooks are opening?

Johns said the Caesars Sportsbooks at Harrah’s New Orleans and the Horseshoe Casino will open Sunday.

“I got to thinking about it, the Saints play Tampa Bay in New Orleans Sunday. It’s a big game,” Johns said. “It’s an ideal time to roll out.”

L’Auberge Casino in Baton Rouge and Boomtown, near New Orleans, will open their sportsbooks Monday. An announcement called the sportsbook at the L’Auberge “The Sportsbook at L’Auberge,” not a Barstool Sportsbook.

Not the first sportsbooks in Louisiana sports betting

In October, a Betfred Sportsbook opened at the tribal-owned Paragon Casino.

Because the casino is on tribal land, it did not need approval from the LGCB.

LA sports betting delay over

Louisiana regulators hoped to have sports betting launched by September. The landfall of Hurricane Ida delayed the process.

Louisiana State Police troopers perform the background investigations and were pulled off their gaming duties to help with emergency response. By late September, the state troopers assigned to gaming were back focused on the licensing process.

Johns said 13 of the 20 casinos and racinos eligible for sports betting in Louisiana applied for licenses. Each of the 20 licensees receives two online skins.

Positioning for mobile launches

Johns said the goal will be to launch mobile by January 1, 2022. He said that will include FanDuel and DraftKings.

“Those are the big guys, they’re licensed everywhere,” Johns said, explaining that while it will take longer to license mobile, their position in other states should help it along. “That’s going to be the key to make this whole thing successful: mobile.”

Perhaps the most bullish on the market is Caesars Sportsbook. Caesars has signed a variety of partnerships with teams and media organizations in the state.

DraftKings won the long race to launch daily fantasy sports first in Louisiana earlier this summer, while FanDuel received a DFS license in October.

Other sportsbooks operators with access to Louisiana include:

  • BetMGM
  • Barstool Sportsbook
  • WynnBET
  • TwinSpires
  • PointsBet
  • Bally Bet

Path to launch for Louisiana sports betting

Gov. John Bel Edwards signed sports betting legislation in June. The legislation creates 20 commercial licenses, each with up to two mobile skins, and a lottery license.

The state hit some turbulence this summer when the LGCB was left without a chairperson. Still, regulators approved sports betting rules in mid-September.

The lottery expects to launch its sports betting product, which includes online and retail products, in January 2022.

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Pat Evans

Pat Evans is a Las Vegas-based reporter covering sports business. Evans previously worked at Front Office Sports and the Grand Rapids Business Journal. He has authored two books: Grand Rapids Beer and Nevada Beer.

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