Massachusetts may have led the pack in terms of daily fantasy sports, but it has fallen behind on other aspects of legal gambling since a Supreme Court ruling that struck down federal restrictions on sports gambling. Massachusetts has since made sports gambling legalized within their borders as soon as possible – setting an example to other states across the nation.
Massachusetts is a sports-crazed region, boasting powerhouse teams at both professional and collegiate levels. To meet patron demand for betting online sports gambling in their state casinos, The Massachusetts Council on Gaming and Health recently opened three centers throughout Massachusetts offering “game sense advisers”, who help casino patrons understand odds and betting limits as well as help people establish voluntary self-exclusion lists. They expect an uptick in demand as Massachusetts sports betting takes off; however it may still take some time before residents of Massachusetts can place real money bets online.
Though Nevada casinos began accepting sports bets on January 31, online betting options will not go live for six months yet – giving sports fans plenty of time to visit local casinos to place bets personally in person.
Massachusetts is off to an early start with sports wagering, yet some are raising concerns over its regulation. Holy Cross professor Victor Matheson expresses concerns over this fast start by the industry; officials should monitor how it’s being regulated early. According to him, promotional practices that could lead to problem gambling among youth, immigrant communities and people in recovery from addiction must also be closely observed as the industry begins.
Certain kinds of bets will not be permitted at New Hampshire sportsbooks, including bets on in-state collegiate teams like Boston College basketball. Although regular-season betting will not be permitted, postseason tournaments such as March Madness will allow bets against BC. Esports is another growing industry which operates under different rules than traditional sports.
Even with all their restrictions, Virginia sportsbooks have already started off strong this year and are on track to bring in millions in wagers this year. According to estimates provided by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC), sports betting will result in additional tax revenue of $60 Million per year in its inaugural year alone.
Matheson estimates that more than 90% of sports bets will be placed online in Massachusetts by 2024, with Bally Bet, Fanatics and Betway all applying to operate online sportsbooks and taking 20% and 15% respectively from revenue generated online and by physical casinos respectively. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will take a 20% cut of any online revenue and 15% from physical betting activity conducted within its three casinos respectively.
The MGC recently approved wagers on events other than American football, basketball and baseball – specifically Australian rules football, badminton, boxing, cricket cycling darts floorball futsal golf handball karate ping-pong snooker tennis as well as their big four counterparts (American football baseball basketball & hockey).