EPISODE 177 | LSR Podcast

Could Ohio Sports Betting Rules Change Sportsbook Ads Nationwide?

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34 min

Could Ohio Sports Betting Rules Change Sportsbook Ads Nationwide? | LSR Podcast 177

The state of Ohio is regulating how sportsbooks market to customers far more seriously than any other jurisdiction. Could this shift in Ohio sports betting have repercussions around the US? We also take a look at bet365’s entrance into Pennsylvania and the latest as Texas considers legalizing sports betting.

Full transcript

Matt Brown (00:07):

Hello and welcome to episode number 177 of the LSR Podcast. My name is Matt Brown, joined each and every week by the brightest minds in all the gaming industry. With me, I have Dustin Gouker, I have Adam Candee. You can follow them on the Twitter machine for free, and you should. Just go smash the button @DustinGouker, @AdamCandee. Two E’s, no Y. If you hate yourself, you can follow me, @MattBrownM2. Everything we do, absolutely free. So please, subscribe, rate, review, that’s all we ask of you. That’s it. That’s all we’re asking. And if you’re watching us over on the YouTubes, hello and hit that subscribe button down below. We will talk some Pennsylvania. We’ll talk some Virginia. We will see what’s going on in Texas and a very special announcement at the end of the show, so stick around for that. You will certainly want to be here for that. And Adam though, we’re going to kick things off with Ohio. As we mentioned last week here on the podcast, this was as the clock struck midnight, as the field goal went wide left, Ohioans were allowed to legally sports bet.

Ohio legal sports betting ads

Adam Candee (01:08):

They were. And what’s happened in the meantime is something that is becoming not only a point of discussion within Ohio, it’s becoming a point of discussion throughout the industry, and that is how Ohio regulators are enforcing their sports betting advertising rules, which is pretty closely. What we’ve seen is that BetMGM, Caesars, DraftKings all potentially subject to a $150,000 fine for advertising bets as risk-free or free bets. And that seems to be a point of contention for the Ohio regulators with their rules. And it brings up a larger discussion about whether that’s the right language to be using from a responsible gambling perspective throughout the country.

(01:52):

Now, what that also means is that any of the national ads that run for these companies that happen to air in Ohio need to comply with Ohio law. We talked to the Ohio Casino Control Commission about this, and they said, “Look, everybody knows what the rules are. They’ve known what the rules are from the start.” And so this could lead to sportsbook companies having to change their advertising that they know will hit this Ohio market to comply with that law. And it could lead to a bigger sea change elsewhere, as well. We haven’t heard particularly from regulators in other states, but it certainly seems as though it’s the kind of change that might sweep across more states than just Ohio.

Matt Brown (02:35):

Yeah. Dustin, when this came out, it was fairly interesting for me because I guess I’m just so used to all of it. I mean, this literally goes back, deposit bonuses and different things and all that stuff like that have been around forever. And back to the gray area, offshore days and things like that and hey, listen, it wasn’t legal. I had to do what I had to do. All right. But I mean these things have been around for a long time.

(02:57):

It did make me wonder the language of risk-free and saying risk-free, I did try to think what would be a better terminology? What would be a better way to explain that? And specifically, as Adam just mentioned, is if you have to do it in a 30-second timeframe, if you have to do it in a commercial for the cost of a commercial. I don’t know if you’ve thought about this a little bit more or what might be a little bit more transparent with it all because it kind of is the bet itself risk-free because you get stuff back in credits, but you still are having to deposit and there’s still money at play. So yeah, I don’t know. It’s very interesting.

Dustin Gouker (03:32):

Yeah, I mean what it all comes down to is more transparency in what you’re getting. It is not risk-free. I think we can all agree with that. You’re putting up some money. You may or may not see that money back. You do get free bets out of it. And then even just the terminology free. Ohio’s saying there has to be free, there has to be no strings attached to this money if you’re going to use the word free. Which, again, I have no argument with that. There’s lots of places in the world right at large where free is used and it’s not free. You’re giving something up. So now all you have to do is sign up then and you can call it free. If it’s all you’re doing is signing up, it’s free then.

(04:04):

What’s interesting to me is that it’s not shocking to me that this is happening in Ohio honestly. What is shocking to me, it took this long for this to come up and that we haven’t seen this level of scrutiny of any of this from a responsible gambling and marketing standpoint until today. And I’d argue really this is good for the industry because self-regulation, getting this under control, real regulation from Ohio, I’m not saying Ohio should necessarily be the standard everywhere. But taking a closer look at this and being ahead of anything responsible gambling, this is what should be being done in the industry. And it’s only sad that it’s really taken five years to get to this point and that hopefully we’re going to get better standards and more transparency out of all this and everybody will be on the same page.

Matt Brown (04:53):

Yeah. Adam, I guess at the end of the day, we’re going to have to just get rid of the catchphrases like the buzz things and the easy to print and things like that because I get why they went with risk-free at the beginning because, hey, it’s very easy. You can put that on a print ad. You can put it on whatever and all the things like that. And we’re going to have to get to the point where I guess it’s more along the lines of you will get your original stake returned to you in the form of credits should you lose your initial bet on the website or something. Which, again, that’s fine because that is explaining to a new bettor what this actually all means. And they don’t have to go read for themselves.

Adam Candee (05:30):

The simple way, to me, appears to be calling it a refund. I think if you call it a refund, you make clear that we’re going to backstop your money, but it’s your money. You have to put up your money in the first place in order to get it backstopped. You’re welcome sportsbooks. It’s free to you. But now when you talk about where it goes from here, you’re right, it is more difficult to do it in 30 seconds. But that seems to be the standard that Ohio is applying. And one more thing that the regulator made clear, because I know the natural inclination for a lot of people is going to say, “Well, $150,000, well, it’s just the cost of doing business. They’re making a whole lot more money than that in those states.” And you’re right, they are making more money than that. But the Casino Control Commission made clear to us that they don’t believe that it should be seen that way and that they are risking further and additional fines.

(06:19):

This might not be a one-time situation where you pay your fine, say you’re sorry and move on. That if they continue to see any sort of violations that they would continue to apply discipline. And so when it comes down to the brass tacks on this, I do think there is a question that needs to be asked by the sportsbooks to themselves as to whether taking this little spoon of medicine on self-regulation is a whole lot better than getting a gallon of regulation from those they would rather not be regulating them.

Matt Brown (06:52):

Yeah. This will be a super interesting follow for us in the other states, because are there going to be some other states who come in and follow Ohio’s lead and say, you know what? We should probably be more strict on this as well. We certainly should be up to whatever standard Ohio has for the rest of these people. Why would we fall behind when it comes to all that? So I’m sure that is stuff that Adam and team will be looking at as we move forward here into 2023.

Bet365 enters Pennsylvania

(07:16):

Dustin, one of the sleeping giants, if you will, one of the companies that has been around forever, if you’ve been in the gaming space, you are very well aware of this big national global brand that we have said, hey, listen, maybe if there’s anyone sitting out there that already is established, we’re not talking about an ESPN or whatever, a Fanatics or something like that. If there’s anybody out there who is already established that maybe could come in and make some noise, we had said a lot about Bet365.

Dustin Gouker (07:47):

Yeah, this is interesting and plays into what we’ve been saying, and I think we’ve been saying this for years, but is this the signal that 365 is really waking up, that they’re coming to Pennsylvania for both sports betting and online casino. They are apparently willing to pay the high tax rates there. Short of New York, this is the most expensive market to work in right now in online gambling. So yeah, it’s interesting that they’re getting in and getting in a little later. We’ve identified that one of the big stories of 2023 and moving forward is who can disrupt the market? Is it one of the second-tier players, MGM, Caesars? Is it Fanatics who’s coming? Or is this a real sign that 365 is getting real serious about the US market? We’re always reading tea leaves with them. But getting into Pennsylvania, it’s an online casino also market, so it is more of a new needle mover for them and for anyone who gets into Pennsylvania, which has a limited a number of operators who can operate there. They did a deal with Churchill Downs for market access.

(08:46):

So it’s really interesting, yes. Anytime them or Fanatics is sneezing obviously on this and seeing and trying to figure out whether this is the big move. Is this 365 finally signaling, hey kid gloves are coming off and we’re going to start coming for this market in a real way?

Matt Brown (09:06):

Adam, this is just certainly not the brand recognition and certainly not the behemoth that 365 is, but also we’ve started to see Tipico who is again established globally, not necessarily in the United States, but who seems to be getting a little bit more involved here in the States, specifically in Ohio.

Adam Candee (09:29):

They are. And our former colleague, Brad Allen, who now works for Eilers & Krejcik, put the question out there recently that he had also discussed in an article at LSR a few months ago about the future for 365, and then mentioned Tipico as you just did as well. And the question we all have is, is the juice going to be worth the squeeze for these companies? And how settled do we believe the top three or four are in the US market? And it comes down to both product and brand, which is no mystery to anybody listening to this podcast. And I think the only company that really has both of those things to some degree is 365 because they’ve done at least some level of advertising and because they have such a global presence beyond what’s here in the US market.

(10:14):

Now, what does success look like to 365? I think that’s the real question because this is a company that has massive profits worldwide that doesn’t necessarily need to be immediately a top three or four operator in order to make it work. We’ve seen some companies come in and if they can’t turn a profit in the first three or four years or at least they’re not even coming near turning a profit in those first three or four years, they’re not well capitalized enough to hang around. 365 certainly is if it wants to, if it wants to burn cash to try to make a presence in the US market, it certainly has the ability to do so. So now you see this push into Pennsylvania.

(10:54):

And I think Dustin made a really good point to talk about the tax environment in Pennsylvania. If you are willing to play in Pennsylvania, you’re willing to play just about anywhere. And we also saw 365 with a standalone bid in New York that was rejected. And you have to think that if New York ultimately does decide to expand the market, and considering we have some operators where, by our estimates, it would take them the next, oh, 60 years just to recoup the money they’ve lost plus their license fees so far, you have to think that if New York expands, it has to be looking at 365 and companies that were not initially taken in the first round that have at least demonstrated some level of competence beyond what the last couple of licensees in New York have done so far.

Matt Brown (11:38):

Yeah. Dustin, it’s one of those things where I think that the long game that we kind of predicted with a couple of these companies is maybe starting to slowly trickle in here. I understand we are still, in the grand scheme of things, in the infancy of all of this in the United States. I mean, hell, we don’t even still have the biggest states that even have it legalized yet. So I mean there is still a future market to be had here with all that. But I think now as we kind of predicted here, 365, I think this is kind of the toe that’s dipping in so long as the water is not scalding hot or freezing cold. As long as it’s nice and warm and they feel comfortable, I think we’re going to see 365 kind of go into some of these states where they think they can make some cash.

Dustin Gouker (12:23):

Yeah. And everything we know kind of points to this. This is how it was going to be. They were not going to come in and burn cash and spend with DraftKings or FanDuel. Everybody including them basically have said that. They were not willing to pay those rates for early dominance. And FanDuel and DraftKings had both the brand, the database and the money to burn to do all of this. 365 is going to open up the doors. Famous last words, but I don’t think this is going to be accompanied by some huge marketing push, as well. Certainly they’ll market in PA, but yeah, it’s all super interesting. And we still might be here 10 years like saying, “Oh, how much more is 365 doing?” But this is the plan, and they’re OK with that. And unlike a lot of the other companies, they don’t have to prove anything. They have proven it already. They’re going to do this on their terms and when they think it makes sense, and this is the next iteration of that.

Virginia Sports Betting

Matt Brown (13:18):

Adam, we are looking at Virginia. And we were wondering, there are some of these states that got going. And we were wondering how long would it take for them to reassess maybe what they agreed to initially, what would come about, how would change actually look? What would be the changes that were going to be tried to make somewhere along the way? And here we are with Virginia maybe starting to give us a sneak peek as to, OK, state gets launch, does some stuff, figures out they want to change some stuff, and this is how it might look.

Adam Candee (13:50):

What we actually have here, Matt, is the reassessment of the reassessment in Virginia. You have the first state that is kind of looking at a second sea change in the way that it views things even if it is the same subject that they changed last year. So we’ve spent a lot of time on this podcast talking about promotional deductions from gross gaming revenue and what that means in terms of states being able to meet the tax revenue projections that they have for legalizing sports betting. We’ve been the first to tell you it is not only about tax revenue when it comes to legalizing sports betting. You should not be trying to patch budget holes with the money that comes from sportsbooks. That said, it would be silly for us to ignore the fact that that is a primary motivation for most states to legalize sports betting and capture that tax revenue.

(14:38):

So what we saw in Virginia was they initially allowed promotional deductions for their operators. And then last year we saw a bill come in that changed the promotional deduction environment to say only in your first year could you be allowed to deduct promos and be able to save those costs on your tax revenue bill.

(14:58):

This is “The Empire Strikes Back.” We saw that last week, Orrick, a large lobbying firm that has done a lot of work on behalf of some of the US sports betting operators, had a lobbyist register in Virginia and very shortly after we see a bill from Senator McPike that would change the change in Virginia. It would put the rules more like they are in Colorado, which was the other big state that changed the promo environment last year. And it would essentially be a phase-out system over the course of a number of years that you can read our story from Matthew Waters at Legal Sports Report to see the actual details of how that would look and what that would mean in terms of tax revenue.

(15:40):

We look at it and say that it would cost many millions of dollars to Virginia from what it gained last year if you were to go to this version of the bill. So lots of questions still to be had about this. There’s very little doubt in our minds that it’s an industry push here to get this bill put in because the senator who proposed this bill, Senator McPike, is also one of the senators who proposed legalizing sports betting in Virginia in the first place. So it would seem odd that a senator who proposed capturing tax revenue would then go back and say, “Let’s get less tax revenue.” So more to be sorted out here, but a very interesting bill in Virginia nonetheless.

Matt Brown (16:21):

And like you said, it is the revisiting of a revisit and all of that. I do wonder if we start to look and say, OK, well, I mean now this state is going to maybe look at this a little bit more. Maybe this state’s going to look at this a little bit more. You mentioned even earlier New York’s decision on whether they’re going to open up their market more or not. And I think that, again, we all were saying it makes more sense to have a more open market. Why would you not? Et cetera, et cetera. I think cooler heads might end up prevailing overall in the majority of these things where, as it plays out, you realize this wasn’t optimal. This might be a little bit more optimal. This seems like this is working in this state. Why did we do this in ours, and stuff like that. I mean, again, we talk about this. We’re still in the infancy of all of this and I imagine this is going to be drastically different even 36 months from now.

Adam Candee (17:13):

Yeah. Without question. And Matt, I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that in the wake of The New York Times series, which included talk of the promo deductions and the lack of state tax revenue, it’s going to be a more clear and present issue for a number of states. And it’s a reasonable case. It is absolutely reasonable for these companies. Let’s talk about a FanDuel, DraftKings or even a BetMGM and a Caesars who were kind of trailing. The BetMGM, Caesars were kind of trailing behind FanDuel, DraftKings in the digital space. But obviously FanDuel, DraftKings were trailing behind BetMGM and Caesars in terms of recognition as casino brands.

(17:52):

And after five years in a national market with the amount of money that has been spent, are we making the same case for long-term promotional deductions for these companies when a lot of their goals of awareness and reach have been accomplished? Whether you’re in Virginia or whether you’re in California, a lot more people know about these companies than they did in the past. Now I do think there’s a great case to be made that we’ve talked about on this podcast quite a bit where in order to entice people from their bookie or from the illegal offshore market into the legal market, there still needs to be some upfront promotions that are given out to bring people in. But that’s upfront. That’s not necessarily three, four, five years down the line.

Texas legal sports betting update

Matt Brown (18:36):

Dustin, we said that 2023 was going to be kind of the year of Texas, whether we were going to get it or not get it, and how big of a push would there be, et cetera, et cetera. All eyes, from our end, certainly were going to be on Texas. It seemed like things were heading in the right direction. A lot of the kind of rumblings we were getting toward the middle to end of 2022 at least had a bunch of super prominent figures that were behind all of this. But now the lieutenant governor coming out and basically, I’m not going to say throwing cold water on that, but certainly casting at least a little bit of doubt. Now, it is one of a situation that is fairly unique, I guess, from a standpoint where we do have a state that does not have any casino gambling whatsoever.

(19:19):

It seems like at this point most of the states that we talk about have some form of casino one way or another, whether it be through traditional gaming, whether it be through the various Native American tribes, whatever it might be, all that. Well, we don’t have that in Texas. Now that’s not to say it can’t get done in Texas because of that. Because the same thing was the case in Tennessee where we did not have casino gambling in Tennessee, yet we were able to figure something out there with sports betting. So Texas though, going to be super, super interesting here over the next few months.

Dustin Gouker (19:50):

Yeah, absolutely. This is a place where, again, somebody sneezes and we’re going to write about it. We got two sentences from Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick in an Austin TV interview. He said, I haven’t heard anyone mention it to me that they’re interested in doing anything. A lot of talk out there, but I don’t see any movement on it. I mean, again, we’ve heard a few words from him that is far less than, oh hey, sports betting is coming. We’re going to really move on this. It is arguably not the best news, but also we’re reading a lot of tea leaves here. And we still haven’t seen a bill actually introduced. Mike Mazzeo again reported a source saying that we need to see Patrick actually be engaged with this and not just say, “Well, here you go. I might do something. I might not.” He needs to actually maybe be a little bit of a leader here because people aren’t going to spend political capital trying to move a sports betting bill in Texas if nothing’s going to happen. So we might need to hear a little bit more from Patrick to get this moving.

(20:48):

We’re certainly not anywhere near the point where this is dead. We’re going to see it. We’re probably still going to see a bill introduced later this month or early in February. And its chances then will depend a lot about the maneuverings here and possibly on what Patrick says moving forward and if he’s going to be playing ball with everyone. So definitely not … short of good news, but I’d caution where we don’t need to say a whole lot more. I’ll also say that there actually are a couple of, actually three little casinos in Texas, but they’re tribal, don’t really have a whole lot of juice there. So you can technically gamble. You can also go to bingo halls and some weird poker rooms down in Texas.

Matt Brown (21:28):

Yeah. The weird card room laws there. It’s the weirdest thing in the world how they made that happen. But they’re actually fairly big and get a ton of action. So yeah, that’s also some sort of loophole thing that’s going on there. Adam, I mean, we look at Texas. That was the one where we were kind of giving our year end pod. We all three were saying, OK, obviously the biggest story of 2023 is going to be whether Texas goes or not, the size of Texas, the amount of sports teams in Texas. We understand that sports is basically a religion in Texas. It is. So we know what this would do. We know how big this would be for the industry. We understand what kind of numbers would be produced there.

(22:12):

So we know there are lobbying groups that have been put together. We know there are some prominent voices. There are also some rumblings of things that have never been confirmed nor denied about even some of the big gaming companies pairing up with some of these prominent voices and billionaires and things like that to do things with either their teams or stadiums, et cetera, et cetera. So typically where there’s smoke, there’s fire. But that being said, this was, at least as Dustin said, only a couple sentences, but an interesting couple of sentences.

Adam Candee (22:42):

Well, when the smoke is around Mark Cuban, Jerry Jones and Tilman Fertitta, there could be fire, but it also could just be a lot of smoke. These are guys who get a lot of attention for saying very little. And I think the most important thing to keep in mind with this story is that the context in Dan Patrick saying this is that our Mike Mazzeo had heard from some industry sources about a month ago that Patrick’s stance on legalizing sports betting had softened a little bit. So hearing him say there’s no movement yet, I think he’s basically saying, if I’m reading between the lines, it’s not that this won’t happen, it’s just that I haven’t seen anything about it quite yet.

(23:21):

And that even would be a big step forward for the industry considering the opposition that’s been there in the past, not only from Dan Patrick, who is of course the president of the Senate as the lieutenant governor there, but from Governor Greg Abbott. And both of them were just reelected. So it’s always important to understand the political climate as well, that neither one of them needs to worry about this being used as an election issue against them anytime soon if there were any sort of moral, religious, business opposition to expanding sports betting in the state of Texas.

Matt Brown (23:52):

Again, anecdotally, just because of the proximity and things like that, I mean, we live and breathe this industry and stuff, so we know. We hear about the massive bets that get made over in Louisiana because of one furniture store owner that decides to-

Adam Candee (24:07):

Don’t do it. Don’t do it. Don’t do it.

Matt Brown (24:09):

I’m just saying. So there are millions and millions in handle that are coming through one fellow in the state that would be instantly kept in-state should anything get legalized. And of course we know a lot of rich people in San Antonio and Houston and Dallas and Austin and all the stuff like that. So it will be interesting to see if we don’t see things start to heat up at least a little bit more here as we get closer.

Dustin Gouker (24:34):

If you say his name, you’re banned from the podcast forever.

Matt Brown (24:36):

I said a prominent furniture store owner. That’s…

Dustin Gouker (24:39):

Suspended. I’m just saying, that’s the rule. The rule is if you say the name-

Adam Candee (24:41):

Bob from Bob’s Furniture really needs to get his act together.

Matt Brown (24:44):

I mean, the guy named his first name after the piece of furniture. OK, I mean-

Adam Candee (24:48):

I’m saying.

Matt Brown (24:51):

That is buying into the bit. All right, can you imagine that is really, really, really, that is some commitment right there. So guys, we have done 177 episodes of this podcast. And I don’t want to make you think that there will not be a number 178. There definitely will. Hopefully, there will be a number 278. This is an industry podcast, so industry people talk. Industry news gets going fast. And so, as opposed to rumors and things getting around, we prefer to break our own news here on this very LSR Podcast number 177. So Dustin, I’m going to turn the floor over to you, as I’m sure there are a lot of people out there who will be hearing this news shortly as it is anyway. So might as well hear it from the person himself.

Special announcement

Dustin Gouker (25:37):

Sure. So I am stepping down from the company that runs Legal Sports Report effective at the end of the month. I have been doing this for eight years now, and I just decided it was time to take a break and step back. It’s been an amazing ride to be a part of this and to take a little niche sports blog and turn it into something special that I think the industry really values. I thank you and Adam for putting up with me for probably 160-some of these that we’ve all been on. And to Adam for taking what is one of my pride and joys in my life and continuing to do amazing work with his team day in and day out.

(26:18):

Good news for all of you, or bad news, I don’t know, maybe it’s bad news. So I’ll be staying on the podcast for at least a while. I’m just going to be hanging around, not doing a whole lot right now so I can stay up with sports betting news and stay with you. But I’ve been overseeing the operations on a lot of sites that we do in gambling, The Lines, our sister site, a lot of sites that we do regionally around the country to talk about what’s going on in gambling. And again, started this with a few people a long time ago. We’ve been part of this larger company for five years. And just time for me to take a little break and see what’s next. And I’m excited to see what the future of LSR and all of our sites is moving forward.

Matt Brown (27:05):

Yeah. Dustin, glad that you will certainly be around to give your insight on the industry here on the podcast and all that. And listen, from everybody within the company, thanks to you for everything that you have done somewhere, everything along the way. Listen, when I started here, it was me, you, Eric and the owners. You know what I mean? It was basically me, you, Eric and the owners. And to think now that there are, what is it? What are we at, 30 something sites now? Forty something sites? And 100 employees. It’s crazy to think where this has all gone and the growth that you have helped with all of this. And man, but it’s a lot. And you have a family and you have a young child and all of things like that. And I fully understand how life can sometimes be like, you know what, man? I want to smell the roses a little bit.

Dustin Gouker (27:55):

Yeah. It really is taking a break and focusing a little bit more on my physical and mental health. Again, it’s just a personal decision. I’m fortunate to be in the situation where I can do that. And yeah, I’m looking forward to watching my 3-year-old toddler grow up a little bit more this spring and summer and spending some more time with her.

Matt Brown (28:18):

Adam, I know taking over at LSR was just, I know it was something you really enjoyed whenever you came over and it was kind of fit with your personality and what you like about the industry and all of that. And it was a kind of seamless transition from Dustin kind of running the site as well.

Adam Candee (28:35):

Well, if you thought it was seamless, then that’s a credit to Dustin because it was his site that he and the former founders, including Chris Grove, spent so much time building up. And I don’t want that to go over anyone’s head. Stop and take a moment to think about if you know LSR right now, if you’ve seen LSR cited in ESPN, The Washington Post, The New York Times, any of the places that it has been cited, that is because of their work. And I was happy to come in and keep that going, maybe make a few tweaks here and there to bring us into the next era. But it was always with Dustin’s hand guiding from the side of a site that he put the sweat into to make it what it is today.

(29:22):

So I’m almost five years into doing this now. You talked about that little group that the company started with. I think I was the next guy in after that, before PASPA when I started here. And to give you a little bit of behind the scenes, if I needed to get ahold of Dustin at 10 or 11 at night, if I needed to get ahold of Dustin at 4 or 5 in the morning, that’s the dedication that he’s always had to making not only LSR work, but to making all of the content that he was overseeing work. And so that level of dedication is rare, and it should be appreciated not only by the people within our company, but by the people outside the company who enjoy the work that LSR does every day. So I am proud to be representing LSR and I’m proud that we’re going to have Dustin still representing on the podcast as well.

Dustin Gouker (30:16):

And this is still my most fun half-hour or whatever it takes every week. It gives me a break from the day to day, and I just love talking about this stuff. It lets me do what I really started doing is just talking about the industry. And we say this before, but we get more feedback about this podcast I think than anything we do. I hear people. So I’m happy to, if I’m of value moving forward, I will continue to provide my insights. I’m sorry if you’d rather I be gone, but you got me for a little bit.

Matt Brown (30:45):

Thank you. Yes, they do not. And Dustin, just so that we, again, we’re in a small industry. I just want to eliminate any sort of rumor or whatever. You didn’t get poached. You’re not leaving for some other gig. You’re not whatever. This truly was, hey, I’m going to take a step back and just kind of try to enjoy life for a little bit.

Dustin Gouker (31:02):

Yeah, don’t have another job lined up. Nobody forced me out. My decision. Yeah. Just yeah. Again, I went and looked it up. And you might remember these, Matt. I did daily fantasy sports weekly wrap-ups. That was my first … Chris had called me up over the holidays I think and said, hey, working on this site called, it was also called, ODF Report, the worst domain. You think our Twitter handle is bad, Matt. ODF Report for Online Daily Fantasy Report. So bad. But we basically covered the daily fantasy sports industry because that was what was big circa 2014, 2015. Obviously started growing really quickly. It was me and a couple other people who were paying attention to any of it. And then all of a sudden it blew up. And I’m also very fortunate to be where I was when I was. I mean, yes. I thank you for the kind words, but I also got at the right place at the right time when all this was going on and Adam mentioned the fall of PASPA, which you started right around then, right? That was happening-

Adam Candee (32:09):

Three months before, about three months before.

Dustin Gouker (32:10):

Yeah. That story drops. I mean, obviously had been at the Supreme Court. The story like, oh, the decision came down, oh, I guess all our lives are about to change because we’re about to have sports betting. Yeah, it’s been amazing, but it’s been eight years of it. And I’m just like, yeah, time for me to move on and yeah, take a little break and maybe in gambling, maybe not, but we’ll see. But again, super proud of the work we’ve done at Legal Sports Report now and we’ll continue to do into the future.

Matt Brown (32:37):

Well, me, on behalf of everyone at Catena, I can tell you we appreciate everything that you’ve done, all the hard work. And again, Adam and I are just happy that we get you here for the foreseeable future on the podcast as well to at least continue to get those insights from a dude that is the true OG when you talk about this industry and knowing the ins and outs of all of the actual technical business and regulation side of everything. That is certainly Dustin Gouker and should be first and foremost in your minds out there as well, through all of this.

(33:06):

Guys, everything we do, absolutely free. So please subscribe, rate, review. We really do appreciate that. Help us climb those charts and also just kind of gives us a little bit of street cred out there for people that follow the industry and want to know where they can come for some pretty good insight into what’s going on out there. And on the YouTube side, going to be growing that. So please hit that subscribe button down there as well. For Dustin, for Adam. I’m Matt. Talk to you guys next week.

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