Last Updated May 20, 2022, 1:53 PM

Weekly News - 05/26/2021


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May 26th, 2021 Weekly Report

As summer approaches, we are still seeing a lot of movement in the legal sports betting world. So, there is no time like the present to catch up on this week’s US sports betting news. With several states finishing up their legislative sessions, we have seen a big push to legalize gaming in this last month. Keep reading to learn even more about what has been happening in sports betting this week!

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The first state to launch Bally Bet has been announced and it appears it will be a part of Colorado sports betting. This past week, Bally’s Corp. has made the announcement that they will have a beta launch of Bally Bet in the state.

Bally Bet also plans to launch in three additional markets in this year, 2021. Bally’s has been trying to find its place in the US sports betting market as the market grows exponentially. This beta launch will not be marketed at large because it is more to test and iron out the kinks with the product. The hope is to use the results of the beta launch to refine their sportsbook app in the coming months.

This beta launch will still have a good deal of features, including a betting market that features the biggest sports in the country, in-app parlay games exclusive to Bally’s, as well as integrated social features. Users of the Bally Bet platform will be able to earn points for their bets that they are able to redeem at Bally’s three Colorado casinos. It will also be a part of Bally’s not yet launched national rewards program.

There was a list of candidates for states to launch in for Bally Bet, which Colorado was chosen out of. The app’s developer, Bet.Works, already has a presence in other states. So, that makes it likely that the app will be launching in some of these other states soon too, like New JerseyIowa, as well as Indiana. Bally’s is currently in the process of buying Bet.Works for $125 million.

Bally has a very ambitious campaign planned to strengthen its hold on the US sports betting market through next year, 2022. Twin River bought Bally’s, both the name and the Atlantic City property, back in November 2020. Around that time, Bally’s also took over the naming rights to the Sinclair Broadcast Group’s FOX Regional Sports Networks. It was reported as a 10-year agreement worth $85 million.

Bally Sports had a March 31st launch this past year. There is also a content integration portion of the deal into the 190 stations owned by Sinclair. Bally’s also acquired Monkey Knife Fight, a daily fantasy sports company, this year in January 2021.

The following month, in February 2021, for $40 million, the company also acquired SportCaller, a free-to-play provider. Bally’s is trying to find fast and smart ways to acquire new customers with these purchases.


Another sign of progress for Arizona sports betting happened last week. Arizona’s new tribal gaming compact has been approved by the US Department of the Interior. The compact and the legislation that goes with it was signed on April 15th by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey.

This compact is an overhaul and foundation builder for the Arizona gaming industry. It brings Arizona retail sports betting and Arizona online sports betting to the state. The goal has been to launch Arizona sports betting in the state before the start of the NFL season. It appears this goal is still reasonable with the way things have been progressing.

HB 2772, the Arizona gaming legislation, was passed with an emergency clause. The emergency clause was meant to help speed up the launch of Arizona sports betting. The piece of legislation completed the compact, which required negotiation between the state’s gaming tribes and the state’s governor.

The Arizona Department of Gaming then expedited a timeline for the launch following Governor Ducey’s approval. The Department of Gaming still needs to set tax rates, license fees, as well as types of bets before the launch.

The Department of Gaming has indicated that more information should be released in mid-June. However, an official launch date has yet to be announced. The legislation, HB 2772, gives Arizona 20 sports betting licenses. Ten of these licenses are earmarked for the state’s professional sports organizations. The other ten are earmarked for Arizona’s state tribes.

These licenses include both retail sports betting as well as Arizona online sports betting. Any tribe that has multiple brick-and-mortar locations has the ability to operate retail sportsbooks under just their one license. In addition, the legislation has also legalized daily fantasy sports.

Now, there are sports betting operators who are lining up to break into the Arizona market. Both FanDuel and DraftKings were the two at the front of the list to announce their agreements for market-access. FanDuel has partnered with the Phoenix Suns. DraftKings has partnered with TPC Scottsdale, the host of the PGA Tour’s Waste Management Phoenix Open.

This past month has also seen the Arizona Diamondbacks announce their partnership with Caesars Sportsbook. This will create two sportsbooks within a two-block vicinity, at the Phoenix Suns Arena and Chase Field.

Both BetMGM as well as theScore Bet have also indicated they have Arizona sports betting in their sights. Arizona has four major sports leagues, making it primed for sports betting in the state. And, it also is a regular stop for professional circuits such as the PGA Tour and NASCAR.


Two more states have moved forward in their pushes to legalize sports betting. Florida sports betting has almost been legalized in the state. However, it is not up to the Florida state legislature to make the final call. As part of a larger gaming compact with the state’s Seminole tribe, Florida sports betting was able to pass the state’s legislature.

Florida state Governor Ron DeSantis helped negotiate the compact, so he is expected to sign the legislation with no issue. However, the compact will require federal approval and the state’s mobile betting chances are not guaranteed. The mobile betting portion is also poised to face additional legal challenges.

If mobile betting is able to fend off those challenges, it should be able to launch in the state as soon as October 15th. It has been reported that the FanDuel Sportsbook as well as the DraftKings sportsbook are both ready and willing to negotiate deals with the Seminole tribe. These sports betting stalwarts are hopeful to make their presence in the state sooner rather than later.

The state of Connecticut is another state that has legal sports betting tied to a tribal compact. However, the state saw its expanded gaming bill easily pass in the House this past week. Both Connecticut and Florida have mobile betting worded the same way in their tribal gaming compacts. But, Connecticut has seen no threats of a lawsuit to challenge Connecticut mobile sports betting.

Now, Connecticut sports betting still needs the approval of the Senate before the legislation can go to Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont for his signature. So, it still has a few steps to go before it can launch in the state.

Written by Allie Nelson, our US Sports Betting Industry Expert. You can learn more about our author's expertise.

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