Happy Monday, folks. It’s rare that the biggest sports betting news of the week breaks so late on a Friday but that was the case last week.
New York sports betting is – and will remain – the top story to follow for the foreseeable future. The LSR Podcast considered just how big the market could grow after reports that the first weekend led to $150 million in handle.
That was just the tip of the iceberg, as it turns out.
Follow @LSPReport on Twitter for more details on New York and other legislative developments as they happen.
Top sports betting news: New York crushes first nine days
It did not take long for New York to prove its strength as a top US sports betting market.
The state’s first four mobile sportsbooks combined for $603 million in handle in nine days. That included two weekends of NFL betting, including the first five games of the NFL Playoffs.
Revenue over that period was $48.2 million on an 8% hold. That equals $24.6 million in taxes based on the state’s 51% tax rate.
Handle share mostly fell in line with the level of promotions offered by the operator:
- Caesars Sportsbook: $257.7 million (42.7% share)
- FanDuel Sportsbook: $200.4 million (33.2%)
- DraftKings Sportsbook: $134.4 million (22.3%)
- BetRivers: $10.6 million (1.8%)
One obvious (and fair) question is just how much of that handle is from free bets. Either way, New York is off to a historic launch.
BetMGM debuts strongly in New York
Results for the week ending Jan. 23 should look even stronger thanks to the debut of BetMGM last Monday.
BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt said the brand broke all of its debut records, including deposits, bets, handle and multiple key conversion rates.
The update from the MGM Resorts-Entain joint venture also announced another $450 million in combined investment from the two, bringing total investment since 2018 to $1.1 billion.
Management said the brand is the leading US iGaming operator with a 30% share from August through November. It is the no. 2 operator in states with iGaming and online sports betting with a 24% market share over the same period.
Will Washington sports betting lawsuit hit Supreme Court?
A lawsuit filed in the US District Court of DC could be destined for a ruling from the country’s highest court, Maverick Gaming CEO Eric Persson told LSR.
The lawsuit is in a federal court, as it challenges the application of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. That only allows class III gaming by tribes if that gaming is available to commercial operators as well, the lawsuit claims.
Whether the fight actually ends up at the Supreme Court is unknown. Persson plans to pursue a win every way he can:
“Nothing’s changed from when we first started talking. We have the means and the ability to chase this down and we’re going to keep knocking on that door until sports betting commercially comes to the state of Washington and Maverick Gaming can participate.”
Eye on betting legislation
It’s still early in many legislative sessions around the US but there are already a few sports betting bills circulating:
- A bill that would legalize sports betting in Oklahoma might be promising too much revenue based on an older study.
- There are multiple bills that want to open up the online Mississippi sports betting market, but one includes a major barrier: renewing accounts in person every 12 months.
- Virginia missed out on a healthy chunk of tax revenue by allowing VA sportsbooks to write off promotional costs. A new bill would end those write-offs after 12 months, while another would end the betting ban on in-state colleges.
Other top sports betting news from last week at LSR
- A study suggesting how iGaming in Canada could hurt tax revenues and jobs could lead to a delay in opening up the Ontario sports betting market.
- Connecticut sportsbooks reported handle growth in December, its second full month of mobile betting. That growth should continue for a new market but might be hampered by New York’s debut next door.
- DraftKings is donating nearly $1.6 million to responsible gambling organizations across the US over the next three years.
- Maryland sportsbooks still have no idea when they will launch online as a disparity study remains in limbo.
- Michigan sportsbooks generated $3.9 billion in handle during 2021, including $3.7 billion online after the market launched in late January.
- Pennsylvania sportsbooks saw revenue drop significantly from November’s record, though that is in line with national trends.
- Sports betting in Indiana generated $29 million in taxes for all of 2021, up from $13.2 million in 2020.
- There is still no firm start date for mobile sports betting in Louisiana. The state’s retail sportsbooks reported $39.5 million in handle from its first full month in December.
- US sports betting operators almost had a rough day two Sundays ago thanks to a near-NFL tie and Draymond Green.