CT Sports Betting Has Launched, What's Up With Massachusetts?

CT Sports Betting Has Launched, What's Up With Massachusetts?
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Online sports betting is now officially statewide in Connecticut. Gov. Ned Lamont announced the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection has authorized the full launch of mobile sports betting and iCasino in the state at 6 a.m. yesterday.

“This is an exciting moment for our state and our tribal partners,” Lamont said. “Connecticut has proven to be a leader when it comes to the gaming economy going back decades, and that legacy will continue with the launch of these new online options for all eligible residents. I am very proud to say that I placed the first legal, in-person sports wager in our state’s history just two weeks ago, and I encourage those who want to participate in placing wagers to do so, responsibly. I extend my gratitude to the staff at the Department of Consumer Protection for their efforts over the last several months to make this possible, particularly since this is one of the fastest state implementations of online gaming and sports wagering of any state in the nation.”

Players can register, deposit and begin placing bets at either FanDuel Sportsbook, DraftKings or Sugarhouse Sportsbook. FanDuel gained access through the Mohegan Tribe, while DraftKing is partnered with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe. The Connecticut Lottery Corporation selected Rush Street Interactive as its partner after receiving multiple applications from operators looking to enter the state.

In addition to mobile sportsbooks, both DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel feature online casinos. More than 130 casino games have been approved by the Department of Consumer Protection for both FanDuel and DraftKings.

The full launch follows the completion of a successful seven-day soft launch that started on Oct. 12.

“Thank you to everyone who participated in this process to ensure an effective soft launch for online gaming platforms,” Consumer Protection Commissioner Michelle H. Seagull said. “This is an exciting time in our state, and we are proud of the work we have done to ensure a safe and successful gaming landscape in Connecticut. We encourage everyone to enjoy these new forms of entertainment responsibly.”

What about Massachussets?

With Connecticut becoming the latest northeastern state to legalize and launch online sports betting, the attention now turns to Massachusetts, which is now bordered by three states with legalized mobile betting, including Connecticut, Rhode Island and New Hampshire.

Legalizing sports betting is also not a priority this fall, according to Massachusetts Senate President Karen Spilka. Earlier this month, Spilka told the State House News Service sports wagering was not a priority for the Senate. She listed five other issues more pressing than sports betting, including the state government’s American Rescue Act funding, election reforms, mental and behavioral health, budgeting the books on the fiscal year and redrawing political district lines.

When Spilka was asked about the potential expansion of gaming in Massachusetts, she mentioned the Senate Ways and Means Committee is “looking at it.”

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker has been adamant about seeing his state launching sports wagering. In the first week of the NFL season, he tweeted, “We filed a bill in 2019 and again this year to legalize sports betting in MA – it's time to act and get this done. MA is losing out to many of our neighbors on this one.”

Massachusetts is currently waiting for the Senate to consider the sports betting bill. The state house passed a sports wagering bill with a 156-3 vote back in July.

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