Could DraftKings Delay Massachusetts Sports Betting?

Written By Giovanni Shorter on October 27, 2022
DraftKings Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) will meet Thursday, October 27 and there is a new subject on the agenda. DraftKings, Boston-based sports betting giant, is asking the commission to change the current sports betting timeline. Currently, the MGC is aiming for retail sportsbooks to go live in January with mobile to follow in March 2023.

DraftKings Opposes Timeline

While the contents of DraftKings’ request are yet unknown, it is likely DraftKings opposes retail gaining an earlier launch date. During meetings with the MGC, DraftKings opposed the idea of retail sportsbooks launching ahead of online operators. Representatives from DraftKings have vied for a universal Massachusetts sports betting launch.

“We found that in other jurisdictions that has worked and made sense and it ensures that nobody obtains a competitive advantage, an unfair competitive advantage when a new market opens,” said Chris Cipolla, Senior Director of Legal and Government Affairs at DraftKings. “… We do feel what’s most important is giving everybody a fair shot to launch, retail, mobile, untethered, tethered.”

While most sportsbooks that spoke during the meetings were in favor of staggering retail and online sportsbook launches, FanDuel representatives did support DraftKings’ concerns. The current request is likely to be in regard to changing the timeline towards a universal launch.

It is unlikely that lawmakers will change this plan, however. They have admitted to not having enough time to launch online ahead of Super Bowl 57. However, retail betting could be live to bring in Super Bowl bets.

What Else Will Be Discussed During The Meeting?

The meeting will also see the MGC discussing several details surrounding the launch of Massachusetts sports betting as scheduled. Massachusetts lawmakers have already seen 29 operators submit forms to apply for betting in the Bay State. The MGC will need to limit these down to 15 ahead of launch.

Lawmakers are expected to take ample time discussing the best course of action for narrowing down sports betting licenses. The DraftKings timeline change request will likely be discussed, but not in much detail as the MGC works towards bringing the market to life.

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Giovanni Shorter

Giovanni Shorter is a sports enthusiast and writer with a passion for the legal and industry side of the sports betting market. Giovanni got his education from Florida State University where he honed his writing style writing narratives and short stories. He has spent his professional career covering sports and entertainment through articles and blogs and continues to look at the industry from multiple angles.

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