The Massachusetts sports betting market launched on January 31, 2023, with retail sportsbooks. Online operations then went live on March 10. This came months after former Mass Governor Charlie Baker signed the bill back on August 10, 2022, to legalize the local betting market.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) has continued to regulate its market following this, with 11 total online betting licenses being approved in total. Sports betting fans in the commonwealth will see the benefits of the MGCs efforts in Q1 2023. The goal was to have retail sportsbooks live in time for Super Bowl 57 and online sportsbooks live in time for March Madness.
Massachusetts sports betting
Massachusetts regulations allow for both retail sportsbooks and mobile sports betting statewide. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) set the regulations for the official launch of the market. Retail sports betting went live starting January 31, 2023, with online sportsbooks launching on March 10, 2023, ahead of the NCAA March Madness tournament.
Retail sports betting is allowed at local casinos in Encore Boston Harbor, Plainridge Park Casino, and MGM Springfield. Online licenses were split as tethered and untethered. Tethered licenses require online sportsbooks to partner with local operators to gain access. Untethered licenses allow operators to launch with no need for a betting partnership.
Online sportsbooks that have been approved include:
- Bally Bet
Regulations allow for restrictive college betting with no odds available for in-state events outside of end-of-season tournaments. This means local colleges will not see odds on offer at local sportsbooks. The MGC has also restricted betting on the Winter Olympics, Summer Olympics, Chess, Jai Alai, Cornhole, and eSports.
Professional leagues are fully available, however, allowing Boston fans to bet on the Patriots, Red Sox, Celtics, Bruins, and Revolution. Massachusetts’ sports betting regulations can be compared to most sports betting industries.
When did Massachusetts sports betting start?
Sports betting in Massachusetts officially began on January 31, 2023, at 10 a.m. EST. This will see the launching of retail sports betting locations. Online sportsbooks launched on March 10, 2023, at 10 a.m. EST. The target was to have online sportsbooks active in time for the NCAAB March Madness Tournament. The MGC worked hard to maintain this launch window.
March 10, 2023 – Mobile sports betting launches in Massachusetts.
February 9, 2023 – The MGC sets March 10 as the official launch date for online sportsbooks.
January 31, 2023 – Massachusetts retail sportsbooks went live.
January 20, 2023 – The MGC approved 6 untethered sports betting licenses to Bally’s, Betr, Betway, DraftKings, FanDuel, and PointsBet. This brings the total to 11 online licenses approved for launch.
December 24, 2022 – Lawmakers announce January 31, 2023, as the official target launch day for Massachusetts retail sports betting launch.
December 21, 2022 – The MGC approves BetMGM, Caesars Sportsbook for mobile betting licenses, and MGM Springfield for retail licenses.
December 13, 2022 – The MGC awarded WynnBET with the first online sports betting license.
December 8, 2022 – The MGC granted its first sports betting license to Encore Boston Harbor. This is a retail sports betting license and was voted unanimously.
October 28, 2022 – The MGC denied DraftKings consideration and will stick with set sports betting timeline.
October 26, 2022 – DraftKings representatives reached out to the MGC urging them to reconsider the current sports betting timeline.
October 19, 2022 – The MGC announces that 29 operators are vying for sports betting licenses. The list includes Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings, and FanDuel.
October 6, 2022 – During an MGC open meeting, lawmakers present a sports betting launch aggressive timeline. The target is for retail to be live in January and online sports betting live by February 2023.
September 30, 2022 – The MGC releases the Promulgation of Sports Wagering in Massachusetts update, including a milestone chart showing what they have accomplished thus far.
September 22, 2022 – Several sportsbook entities aiming to launch in Massachusetts discussed their concerns over the temporary license issues with the MGC.
September 15, 2022 – The temporary license hearing held by the MGC ended without rules being set. The language surrounding the rules of the temporary licenses and the potential for sportsbooks to launch and be forced to shut down operations led to the delay.
September 8, 2022 – The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) held its first meeting covering the rules for the Massachusetts sports betting market.
August 10, 2022 – H 5164 is signed into law by Gov. Charlie Baker, officially regulating sports betting in Massachusetts.
August 1, 2022 – Lawmakers in Massachusetts successfully pass H 5164 and advances the bill to the Governors desk. Once signed, regulated sports betting will be law in Massachusetts.
April 29, 2022 – S 2844 passes in the Massachusetts State Senate and advances to the House for consideration.
April 25, 2022 – Both the House and Senate host sports betting bills. The House is looking to push H 3993 while the Senate is pushing S 269.
September 14, 2021 – Governor Charlie Baker publicly pushes for sports betting in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts Sports Betting FAQ
Yes. Online and retail sports betting is legal in Massachusetts. Mobile sports betting started on March 10, 2023 and retail wagering began on Jan. 31, 2023.
DraftKings Sportsbook, BetMGM, Caesars, WynnBet and FanDuel are the best sports betting sites in Massachusetts.
Yes. Even if you are from a state outside of Massachusetts but are located in the state of Mass. you are eligible to bet on sports.
Yes and no. You can bet on out-of-state schools in Massachusetts. But if you want to bet on a Boston College football game or a UMass basketball game, for instance, you are out of luck unless one of those schools is in an NCAA tournament with more than four teams.
You must be 21 years old to bet on sports in Massachusetts. Sports betting at retail locations and on online apps have an age restriction of 21+.
No, offshore sportsbooks such as Bovada are not legal to play on in Massachusetts, nor in any other US state for that matter. Playing on an offshores sportsbook comes with several risks, not the least of which is the loss of your money or your identity. Bovada and other offshore barnds are not bound by US or Massachusetts consumer protections or regulations, which means you have limited options for any recourse.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission oversees sports betting in the state. The agency oversees all other gambling in the state.
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