Single-Game Sports Betting in Canada to Roll Out Aug. 27

Single-Game Sports Betting in Canada to Roll Out Aug. 27
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It’s official — Canadians will be able to place single-game wagers as of Aug. 27.

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada David Lametti held a press conference Thursday at Fallsview Casino Resort in Niagara Falls, Ontario, where he announced that single game sports betting will go live in two weeks.

This announcement comes nearly two months after Bill C-218 was passed by the Senate and received royal ascent. The goal of Bill C-218 was to amend a line in the Canadian Criminal Code that banned single-game wagers and let provincial governments decide how to manage sports betting in their individual provinces.

Provinces will have the choice to allow single-game sports betting, as well as have licensing capabilities to grant offshore betting sites licenses to operate in the province. These offshore sites have been unregulated for decades but able to operate within Canada. They will be given the opportunity to legitimize themselves by applying for an operator license through the individual provinces.

Ontario is leading by example, expected to be the only province to roll out an almost unlimited number of sports betting operator licenses out of the gate. The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario will be accepting applications for sports betting operators who wish to obtain a license to operate in Ontario until Aug. 18.

Operators that have made their intentions known include DraftKings Sportsbook, PointsBet, BetMGM, FanDuel and Penn National Gaming (since acquiring theScore), to name a few. They likely won’t launch until December.

Provincial Lotteries Ready to Go

All provincial lotteries are ready to launch on Aug. 27, including British Columbia Lottery Commission on PlayNow (which also is offered in Manitoba), Ontario Lottery and Gaming, Atlantic Lottery Commission on Pro-Line and the Western Canada Lotteries Corp. will service the prairies. Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis has also announced it will launch single-game wagering on Aug. 27 on their newer PlayAlberta product.

All provinces have had parlay betting available since 1992, as match fixing was always a concern to parliament, and fixing multiple matches on a bet slip would be much more difficult than fixing one outcome. Lotteries have been able to offer parlay betting through their lottery kiosks that are readily available to Canadian residents — which makes for a smooth rollout of single game sports betting for all Canadian lotteries.

This legislation has been long-awaited by sports betting enthusiasts and even provincial representatives as it will inject more revenue into the province and economy. The snap federal election in September could make things a little interesting for the rollout, but there is a sigh of relief that sports betting is now fully legal in Canada.