Though neighboring states have legalized online sports betting, Massachusetts has been slow to join in. Currently, sports betting throughout the state is still illegal, but there's recent news. Massachusetts, after stopping and starting for a couple years, has some momentum behind legalizing sports betting by 2022.
There are a few bills with strong support currently moving through the legislature. Any of these would legalize sports wagering in MA online and at some physical sportsbook locations. One such sportsbook could be Boston-based DraftKings.
As the situation stands in the middle of 2021, Massachusetts sports betting looks increasingly like it will become a reality. There are a few bills that have good support in the legislature, and one has already made its way past the Ways and Means Committee. This process of approval by Ways and Means has killed hundreds of potential laws, so it's a good sign that things are moving in the right direction.
The state does have legal retail casinos for betting, but online casinos are still currently illegal. Sports betting and Massachusetts online sportsbooks are not yet legal. However, with the above news, legal online sportsbooks are more than likely going to be available in the Bay State in 2022.
Additionally, though the majority of online sports betting is illegal, there are several online options. Horse betting, games of skill and DFS is legal in the state and online betting is legal in these cases. So Massachusetts online sports betting does have some precedent.
Massachusetts Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS)
Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) is a new way to play on major league sports teams and players in Massachusetts. Try your sports knowledge skills by playing DFS, on a variety sports events like NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL PGA, MLS, and more.
Most Likely Massachusetts Online Sports Betting Sites
Though we can’t say for sure what the future of Massachusetts online sports betting will look like, we can make some pretty educated inferences. For instance, there are some sports betting websites likely to emerge once legalization does occur. See below for a list of potential Massachusetts online sportsbooks. These examples are all top sports betting sites in other states and are likely to open in Massachusetts for various reasons.
It is no secret that The MGM Springfield Casino has been preparing to open a sportsbook as soon as they’re legally able to. The retail casino was opened in August 2018 and offers 125,000 square feet of gambling glory. It is one of two casinos this size in the state and has already struck up betting partnerships with the NBA and WNBA. BetMGM is one of the top sports betting sites available so it’s likely they would partner with their Massachusetts retail location when sports betting is legalized in the state.
The Springfield Casino has also managed to strike a deal with the international gambling giant GVC Holdings. GVC has a number of well established sportsbooks and it is their infrastructure and expertise that will help BetMGM open smoothly. It’s believed that all of the favorite styles of sports betting will be offered if/when Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized. Here are some likely examples.
FOX Bet has had an aggressive approach to rolling out their app in states once they legalize online betting. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker does seem to be on board with legalizing sports betting in the state. So it appears to be only a matter of time before FOX Bet, one of the country’s top sports betting sites, is able to open a Massachusetts online sportsbook. It’s extremely likely that FOX Bet would partner with the established retail casino Plainridge Park.
Plainridge is operated by Penn National which is a large American operator with 43 facilities under its control. A potential partnership with such gambling entity would help establish FOX Bet and allow them to open a partnered sportsbook relatively quickly.
Like the aforementioned FOX Bet, theScore has some Penn National draw. theScore is already an established app and has forged a partnership with Penn. Since they have this partnership it seems likely that they would open an app in Massachusetts tied to their Plainridge Park Casino.
In other states, theScore offers a 100% bet match of up to $100. A huge perk for new users, this promo has been used in multiple states so it’s likely to be offered as a promo in Massachusetts as well. What’s great about theScore is that it is strictly sports betting, but it also has a sports news media component.
So in addition to betting, you can also see the latest games and scores and form educated opinions. One of it’s draws is that it started as a sports news app and then transitioned to mobile betting. It’s strong background in sports news helps filter the most pertinent information to you directly.
Massachusetts Betting Laws
MA had some difficulty getting their sports betting bills off the ground, but once Governor Charlie Baker issued his own proposal for legal sports betting in the Bay State, lawmakers hit the ground running. Now, in the middle of 2021, legislators have put sports betting revenue on the 2022 budget in addition to passing one house bill through the Ways and Means Committee.
The summer of 2021 saw a lot of action for potential sports betting in Massachusetts, with hearings and proposals happening on a weekly basis. As the summer rolls on, one bill is making the most headway: H 3997. The bill, which sets a healthy 15% tax on online revenue, has a real good chance at full consideration, but the legislature will take a break in August. However, the MA session goes all year, so expect more movement soon.
Casino Betting in MA
There are a variety of betting opportunities legal in Massachusetts. Retail casinos are totally legal, but so far online casinos have not been legalized. Additionally, though horse betting is legal, sports betting is still not. Lottery and DFS are legal in the state and there are several available markets for fantasy gaming.
States where you can already place an online sports bet today :
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Massachusetts Online Sports Betting: Events and Betting Markets
An important thing to consider about Massachusetts online sports betting getting legalized is what types of bets you’ll be making. Here are some popular varieties of betting options to choose from. From types of bets to popular events, there’s quite a few possibilities.
Common Types of Bets
A moneyline bet is probably the simplest kind of bet you can make. Unlike betting on a point spread, moneyline betting is simply a bet about who will win.
This style of betting involves a predicted statistic from a Sportsbook. You will simply bet on whether you believe the actual outcome of the game will be over or under the predicted amount.
Betting on a point spread gives bettors a bit more leeway because it’s based on how accurate your prediction is, not just whether the team wins or loses. A point spread can give bettors a reason to bet on their favorite teams regardless of whether or not they are favored to win.
Futures bets are a great option if your bet is far into the future and you are worried about the possibility of changing odds. The odds of your futures bet will stay fixed at where they are when you make it. So even if the odds change throughout the season leading up to your event, your bet will not change. Meaning if you bet with 7:1 odds in your favor, you will be paid out 7:1 if your team wins.
A prop bet is a bet on any occurrence or non occurrence of an event during a game. This type of bet is non dependent on the outcome of the actual game. Some examples include a bet whether there will be an overtime? Or will the total number of points be odd or even? With prop bets, the possibilities can be quite endless.
Most Popular Sports to Bet On
NFL Betting In Massachusetts
The heart of New England is Boston, and Boston is 100% Pats Country. Massachusetts is known for some of the most voracious and passionate sports fans in the country, maybe the world. Thriving in the most brutal conditions, the New England Patriots have an impressive six championships under their belt, all in the new millennium. The sky's the limit for this team, and you can be sure that betting activity will be heavy when the Pats hit the gridiron this August preseason.
NBA Betting In Massachusetts
Boston is known for a lot of things, and Irish culture is one of them, so much so that the state's official team is the Celtics. Home of stars like Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo and Larry Legend- aka Larry Bird, the Celtics has just as dedicated a fan base as any other team in Mass. Head inside during the NBA season and the Celtics are sure to be featured on every available screen. You'll be able to watch and bet at the same time as soon as sportsbooks go live in the state.
MA doesn't yet have a WNBA team, but that's expected to change in the coming future.
College Basketball Betting In Massachusetts
UMass Amherst, the BC Eagles, the Boston University Terriers: there are no shortage of athletic programs in Massachusetts, whether collegiate or professional. The fans are just as dedicated to their colleges as they are to the teams participating in professional leagues, and the action is certain to be plentiful when betting is available in MA.
NHL Betting In Massachusetts
You can't think hockey without thinking about some of the greatest players in the sport: Bobby Orr, Ray Borque, Cam Neely. What do all these players have in common? That's right: they were all Boston Bruins. Loyal fans will trudge through blizzards and Boston traffic to make it to live games at TD Garden, and soon enough, they'll be able to pull out their phones and place a bet right there at center ice.
MLB Betting In Massachusetts
More than any other sport, baseball has brought the people of Boston together in a major way. Calling it the "Curse of the Bambino", Bostonians whisper the phrase under their breaths. Apparently, trading Babe Ruth away to the Yankees in 1918 was a bad move, because the Red Sox didn't win another World Series title until 86 years later. The Boston Red Sox have put out some of the best players in the game like the obvious Bambino, Babe Ruth; Wade Boggs, Cy Young, Roger Clemens, and more. Bet on the Red Sox at Fenway or at home as soon as betting is legal in the state.
Soccer and The World Cup Betting In Massachusetts
Even soccer has a solid footing in the Bay State, represented in the MLS by the New England Revolution. MLS betting is becoming increasingly popular in the US, and we're expecting a soccer revolution is well on its way to happening countrywide. Expect to be able to bet not only on local MLS teams but your favorite international teams in the Euro, the World Cup, and many more when sportsbooks go online.
Popular Massachusetts Events
Grand Prix of Gloucester
Generally taking place in early October, the Grand Prix of Gloucester is a popular bicycling event.
Red Sox Opening Day
Usually held in April at the start of the season, the Red Sox opening day is a popular sporting event throughout the state.
Head Of The Charles Regatta
This is a two day multi-event rowing race. Extremely popular in the state, this race has 61 separate events and is typically held in October.
Best Teams to Bet On
There are a number of popular Massachusetts sporting teams that range from baseball to basketball to hockey. They would be great options to bet on once Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized. Check out the following teams.
Common Payment Options
There are a variety of payment options generally offered at sports betting websites. Here is a list of potential possible payment methods to be offered once Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized.
There are a few Massachusetts casinos to choose from. Though there aren’t a lot of options to choose from, these casinos are pretty impressive.
Plainridge Park Casino
Just 40 minutes from Boston, the Plainridge Park Casino offers a ton of different betting opportunities. Located in Plainville, Massachusetts and owned by Penn National, Plainridge Casino has a horse racing track, over 1200 slots and great dining and entertainment. If and when Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized, Plainridge will have plenty of online partnerships to choose from.
Located in Springfield, MA, the MGM Springfield offers 125,000 square feet of betting wonder. With plenty of casino games and restaurants to choose from, the possibilities are endless. Massachusetts online sports betting will have a great base with this casino.
Encore Boston Harbor - Everett
Located in Everett, Massachusetts, the Encore Boston Harbor was opened in 2019. Featuring 15 bars & restaurants, the Encore Boston has a variety of slot machines and casino games to choose from. The Encore also hosts a surprising amount of art, including a 2,000 pound Jeff Koons sculpture of Popeye purchased for $28.2 million.
MA Online Sports Betting FAQ
Here are some frequently asked questions about Massachusetts online sports betting.
Is sports betting sites legal in the United States?
Online sports betting varies from state to state. Federally, the government has removed restrictions. However, it is still up to individual states to determine their position on online sports betting. Massachusetts online sports betting is still currently illegal. However, it seems very likely the state will legalize in the coming year.
Despite that, there are still methods of online betting available to Massachusetts residents. Online horse betting is legal in the state as is betting on games of skill or DFS. There are great hopes for Massachusetts online sports betting to be legalized in the near future.
What do I need to register at an online betting site in Massachusetts?
Once Massachusetts online sports betting is fully legalized, all you will need to register is some personal information. Currently, there are some horse betting and DFS sites that require bettors to enter name, address and deposit/withdrawal information. It’s assumed that when Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized, the rules will be the same.
Is it safe to deposit money at sports betting sites in Massachusetts?
Yes. As long as you use an accredited site. Sites like TVG and BetAmerica are respected and verified online betting sources. Make sure you do your research on whether the site you’ll be using is first of all; legal and also secure. Generally speaking, if it’s legal and regulated, it’s also secure.
Can I set betting limits?
Yes! Though this varies from site to site, generally most online betting has their own daily limits for deposit and withdrawal. Additionally, most offer the opportunity to set your own personal limits be it by a daily, weekly or monthly amount.
Final Thoughts on Betting in Massachusetts
Massachusetts online sports betting is still currently illegal. With exceptions for horse betting, games of skill and DFS, Massachusetts is working out their legalities with the 2018 PASPA repeal. However, with the amount of surrounding states that have been legalizing sports betting, it is only a matter of time for Massachusetts.
Massachusetts online sports betting already has a great foundation in the state. Between popular sports teams and events as well as retail partnership opportunities, Massachusetts online sports betting is definitely a future possibility. So make sure to do your research so you’re ready when Massachusetts online sports betting is legalized.