Weekly News – Weekly Roundup 5/20/2022

There Has to Be Another Good Reference to Kansas Anymore

Auntie Em! Uncle Henry! Please save us from another shoe-horned reference to an 80 year old movie because the author doesn't know enough about Kansas' state culture (but to be fair, does anybody?)!

What we can say for sure is that Kansas has made it to the finish line with legal online sports betting. Bill SB 84 was able to secure Governor Laura Kelly's signature earlier in the week, meaning that soon, online sportsbooks will be able to go live and offer real money bets to eligible residents and visitors.

Old phrases about battles and wars come to mind, as it'll take some time for the Kansas Lottery and the Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission to agree on licensing, regulating, and taxing the practice, but yes-- sports betting, in-person and online, is now legal in the Jayhawk State.

Don't lace up your betting shoes just yet. Don't lace them up at all, because you can bet online and it's actually not illegal to make nachos at home. But if you're looking to get online and place a bet on the NBA Playoffs, Kansas betting apps aren't going to be ready in time. Officials are saying it'll be closer to the 2022 football season, which is actually reasonable if you consider a state like Maryland, which legalized betting in May of 2021 but still hasn't gotten to the licensing phase a year later.

Minnesota Edges Close to Bill, But Probably Won't See Light of Day

Minnesota's attempt to legislate and tax online sports betting is HF 778, and like the famous butter, it isn't standing up to the heat of the MN Legislature's indifference. This bill would give the local tribes associated through the Minnesota Indian Gaming Authority to offer online sports bets through their 11 federally-recognized tribes, but lawmakers don't seem to be prioritizing the move, and a recent amendment has soured the agreement for MIGA.

At first, tribes would be given the sole authority to offer online sports betting in the state, and MIGA was on board. Now, with a recent amendment, two state racetracks would also be given a piece of the gambling pie.

MIGA and other comparable tribal authorities in the US often point to IGRA, the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988, as the federal statute giving them sole authority to offer gambling, but said authorities don't often win against the weight of corporate interests. In a letter to legislators, MIGA publicly stated their intent to oppose the bill should the A-22 amendment stand; no official response from legislators has been released.

Sadly for the tribes, it doesn't look like Minnesota authorities will step back on the amendment, nor are they really prioritizing bill HF 778 at all. The session ends soon, and a final push for get HF 778 pushed through with the A-22 amendment is underway.

MGM Offers to Acquire Sweden's LeoVegas for $607 Million

LeoVegas is a Swedish betting company that started out with a mobile-first model, and that forward thinking has made them one of the top providers of sports betting in the country as well as giving them the ability to stretch their legs into a number of international markets, including Canada. Now, they may just be getting in bed with a US-based company, behemoth MGM.

The reasons behind the acquisition are not public, but speculators are imagining that MGM either simply wants to expand their global footprint in a quick, sweeping deal, or they might be looking to dump their existing tech provider Entain, who also runs the Party and Borgata brands but clearly makes the most of their money from the BetMGM sportsbook.

Motives aside, it's looking like LeoVegas will accept the acquisition deal, as co-founder Gustaf Hagman has indicated a favorable attitude toward handing over the reins and making his payout. We'll keep you up to date on this deal, but we may see the LeoVegas brand soon clad in black and gold.


The best category in Jeopardy, potpourri is best defined as a glass full of fragrant yard trash, but in this case is defined as: stuff we just couldn't fit anywhere else.

Here ya go.

Pictured: John Daly, pro golfer. Not Jimmy Buffet's deadbeat brother Jeremy who I just made up.

? Iconoclastic golfer and master class in IDGAF-ery John Daly reportedly smoked 21 cigarettes, drank 12 Diet Cokes, and ate 6 packets of peanut M&Ms all the while briefly making it to the #1 spot on the Masters' leaderboard yesterday. We can recommend the latter, but not the former.

? Is sports betting becoming more popular with women, or are advertisers and leagues putting more effort into marketing toward women? Probably.

? We kinda saw this one coming: New Jersey lawmakers are considering imposing restrictions on how sportsbooks can advertise: the ad budgets for some top-name operators have more than doubled since last year. 2007 WGA Award Winner for Best Comedy/Variety Series (Including Talk) JB Smoove isn't cheap, after all.

Well, I've run out of quarters for the internet machine, so that's about all the time we have. We'll be back next week with another roundup of news, tidbits, and must-knows in the US and Canadian sports betting industries!

Written by Chris Altman, our US sports betting industry expert. Opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinion of VegasInsider.