- Many lawmakers in Massachusetts have been pushing to legalize sports betting since 2018.
- A sports gambling bill was left off the state’s economic development bill this week.
- Analysts remain confident that sports betting options in MA will launch before the end of 2021.
Sports fans in Massachusetts have been pushing state leaders to allow the launch of regulated sportsbooks for years. Unlike many neighboring states, however, Massachusetts has been slow to embrace this popular new industry. New reports are now indicating we could see regulated sports betting options in MA before the end of 2021.
This certainly makes sense for the state right now. Sports betting is bringing some states a huge amount of revenue every single month. Now is a good time to talk about what needs to be done for sports gambling to become available in the state of Massachusetts.
Here’s what we know.
US Sports Betting Revenue Surged Throughout 2020
For many years, Nevada was the only state in the country legally able to offer sports betting options. State leaders complained about this fact, yet the country’s leaders seemed unwilling to make any changes. Then, in May of 2018, the Supreme Court decided to strike down PASPA, allowing every state to finally set its own laws on sports gambling.
Several states including New Jersey and Delaware immediately legalized their sports betting industries. As the months went on, more state officials began seeing the upside of this new form of gambling. Today, 26 states have passed legislation to legalize and regulate sports betting.
2020 proved to be the biggest year for the US sports betting industry in history. That might seem surprising when considering all major sports leagues were completely shut down for several months out of the year. When live sports finally did resume, however, many people were excited to wager on them.
Many states saw their revenue from this industry hit all-time highs. New Jersey, in particular, saw an incredible amount of money coming from its online sports betting platforms. This state set several new sports betting handle records set throughout the year.
Obviously, more states are now interested in this industry. Just about every state around the country is in serious need of some more revenue right now. Legal sports betting seems to be one of the best ways to bring that money in.
It’s been surprising to see Massachusetts take so long to get its sports gambling industry up and running. Fortunately, 2021 might be the year this state’s industry finally launches.
Lawmakers Push to Launch Sports Betting Options in MA
As we mentioned earlier, Massachusetts is well-known for having one of the largest and most passionate sports fan bases in the United States. It’s here that teams such as the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots are based. As you might expect, many Massachusetts residents love to make bets on their favorite teams.
There have been many attempts to get the sports betting industry up and running over the past few years. Many felt that 2020 would be the year this state finally launches its regulated sports betting industry. That didn’t happen and many are now hoping 2021 is when this takes place.
There’s reason to be optimistic. As many are pointing out, sports betting was left out of the state’s economic development bill passed this week. Industry experts still feel confident that sports gambling will become legal here in the first quarter of 2021, though.
Daniel Wallach, a prominent sports betting proponent and analyst, believes the state is almost at the point of legalizing this form of gambling.
“We’re in the 8th inning,” he said. “I’ve heard nothing to suggest this will be derailed. There are a lot of powerful forces that want to see it happen in Massachusetts. The professional sports teams badly want to see it happen, and the casino industry could use the boost.”
In hindsight, it’s not entirely surprising to see sports betting left off the state’s most recent economic development bill. Lawmakers here are working hard to help struggling individuals and businesses. Many are confident that we’ll see sports betting options in MA launch sometime soon, though.
The casinos here could definitely use this boost. As some are aware, Massachusetts’ casino industry has been seeing massive revenue drops lately.
Casinos in Massachusetts Support for Legal Sports Betting
The gambling industry in Massachusetts has changed dramatically over the past few years. It wasn’t long ago that the state banned many traditional forms of gambling. A few years ago, lawmakers here finally began allowing commercial casinos to begin operating.
It didn’t take long for major casino companies to make the move into this state. MGM Resorts International quickly opened the MGM Springfield Casino-Resort. For a time, this venue was extremely profitable.
Wynn Resorts then made the move into Massachusetts, too. This company opened the Encore Boston Harbor in June of 2019. This property began to take over the state’s casino industry and brought in many of MGM Springfield’s players.
2020 proved to be a devastating year for the MA casino industry. Not long ago, MGM Springfield saw its lowest revenue earnings since opening to the public. Many analysts predict low revenue figures for months to come.
Regulated sports betting options in MA could help to turn things around here. Sports gambling is helping to bring many casinos a huge amount of money every month. It’s no surprise that casino officials here are pushing to get the state’s sports betting industry up and running.
Do you think we’ll see Massachusetts finally launch sports gambling in 2021? Let us know in the comments section below!