Tag: Numbers

Solid Numbers, Easy Launch Helps Set Groundwork for Future

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By noon on Friday, Dan Hartman sensed reality settling in.

Legalized sports betting in Colorado was two hours old. Four operators had live online sportsbooks. By that time, he recalled with a laugh, Hartman felt relief. The much-anticipated launch had occurred. What’s more, it went as smoothly as regulators, operators and the public could have wanted.

That trend carried through the weekend. Few, if any, hiccups arose. Hartman’s cell phone remained relatively quiet. All indications were Colorado sports betting was humming.

Optimism already abounded for the future of regulated wagering in the state. But for Hartman, the director of the Colorado Division of Gaming, as well as for bookmakers and bettors, that seemingly flawless opening weekend instilled even more confidence.

“We as a division were excited about it,” Hartman said of the launch. “I think we were excited by what we saw, and I think the operators were the same way. I think they were excited it came off without any issues. Everybody thought it was a success.”

That said, Hartman assured, while May 1 is now in the rearview mirror, there are plenty more “May 1’s” ahead.

No sports, no problem for Colorado sports betting

Certainly from a revenue standpoint, business could have been better with major sports alive and well. Obviously that did not happen, as the coronavirus pandemic has temporarily canceled all major sports.

From an execution perspective, though, the industry got off the ground with ideal grace.

“We really didn’t see any or hear any (missteps or errors) that would have given us any issues or that would have given us any thought that there would have been,” Hartman recalled. Conceding that it appeared strange he wasn’t receiving any calls, he added: “I wasn’t really looking at my phone, but I was looking at it more than normal on a weekend.”

While casinos remain closed because of the pandemic, four operators introduced online sportsbooks the morning of May 1:

Two others originally anticipated joining that crowd, Hartman noted. However, they decided to put off their debuts to “iron out” technical aspects. As it stands, those two — Smarkets and Monarch Casino — expect to launch this week.

With their feet now wet, future operator and market integrations should also go smoothly, Hartman said. Funny how time and experience can affect one’s outlook, as Hartman’s recollection detailed.

“A month and a half ago when everyone started going home and we were starting virtual commission meetings and all the other things we had to do that we just don’t normally do, it was a bit stressful and concerning. I think I went back and forth on whether we were going to open or not open or on time.

“As I got more confident that everybody was using the technology and everything was working and the commission was meeting special to get licenses done, all of those things … played into lowering our curve, really, to get to that confidence level. We were ready to launch and ready to go.”

Limited betting offerings allow time to correct any issues

A few weeks prior to the introduction of Colorado sports betting, Hartman agreed that while fewer active sports limits operators and the state financially, it provides regulators and bookmakers an opportunity to avoid and even quickly correct any issues that arise.

After opening weekend, Hartman believes that is still the case.

“I think if we would have had more operators, we would have had more (markets and issues),” Hartman said. “I think everybody was curious, and a lot of people got on an app and signed up and looked at the different available options they had. I think they were able to do that smoothly and kind of ease into it a little bit. I think the operators did, too.

“Had we had a bunch of (operators) come on at the same time, we may have been putting out a few fires here and there. But I think the way it came up, everybody was able to just manage their own issues. It was actually pretty good for all of us.”

With seemingly a more controlled environment, Colorado sports betting went off with little — if any — stress.

“After Friday, about noon, it kind of really just leveled out, and it was OK,” Hartman related, adding that all systems appeared to be running smoothly. “I think the stress level went down. If you don’t have some of that (stress) going into launch, you probably don’t have a pulse. I’ve done these before, and this one was far less stressful because we knew what was coming in, we knew the operators that were coming in, and everybody wanted to make it a success and not to worry about overlooking things. They’re all pros and were ready to go.”

Plenty more sportsbook launches ahead in Colorado

No doubt, Hartman said, it seems strange that the long-awaited May 1 launch of legal sports betting has passed.

“But,” he emphasized, “We’ve got a lot of May 1’s coming up with 25 operators.”

More bookmakers will enter the fold in short order, starting this week with Smarkets and Monarch. Then, sports will begin to return, including UFCNASCAR and the PGA Tour in the near future, reportedly followed potentially by MLB.

Soon, hopefully, Colorado casinos will reopen to the public, thus allowing retail sportsbooks to make their introductions to the Centennial State.

Hartman said as properties prepare to and even after they reopen, regulators will go in and perform testing before the public can take part.

“But it’ll kind of be seamless,” Hartman said, “with whenever their opening is ready to go.”

In a way, retail sportsbooks might benefit from this shutdown, Hartman said.

“It might even work to their advantage a little bit, because they won’t be trying to open it too soon when it’s half-done. Hopefully that’s where they get, and you’ll see the book open in all its glory instead of halfway.”

How Colorado sports betting looked

As for how the actual wagering in Colorado went, it should come as no shock that the majority of bettors played hometown favorites.

One FanDuel market asked if the Denver Broncos would make the NFL playoffs; 97% of wagers believe that to be the case. The Broncos stood as the most bet-on team at DraftKings, followed by the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche. The majority of bets also went on newly drafted Denver WR Jerry Jeudy to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year. And the most popular team wagered on to win the World Series? The Colorado Rockies.

Similarly, BetRivers saw heavy action on the Broncos to win the AFC West as well as the AFC Championship and the Super Bowl. As for short-term future events, BetRivers COO Mattias Stetz expects UFC 249 in Jacksonville on May 9 “to be the most popular event next weekend by a wide margin.”

What about completed events?

At BetRivers, table tennis dominated, according to Stetz, as it accounted for just over 50% of the handle. One reason, he suggested, is that BetRivers live-streams matches, allowing for customers to watch along with and wager on them as they occur.

The largest bet placed at the site was on a Chinese Professional Baseball League game, which featured a $1,310 wager on the under 14.5 runs. The total came in at 12, paying the customer nearly $2,400.

As for FanDuel, one customer put down $882 on the Dallas Cowboys to win the Super Bowl, which would pay at just over $15,000. The biggest payout cashed in at $1,400, the result of a $500 wager on a Belarusian Premier League soccer match.

Opening weekend instilled extra optimism not only for regulators, but also for operators.

“We saw tremendous engagement after only a few days of sports betting in Colorado,” according to a spokesperson from DraftKings, noting all the local flavor among bets placed. “These popular futures, plus our current offers available in Colorado (table tennis, international soccer, etc.) are positive signs as we look forward to the return of major US sports leagues.”

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Powerball Lottery Winning Numbers For January 29

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Update:

Tonight’s winning numbers are

9, 12, 15, 31, 60, Powerball 2

Power Play 2x

 

The Powerball jackpot continues to climb, as it’s now reached a staggering $394 million prize ahead of tonight’s drawing. (Stay tuned to PlayUSA tonight — we’ll post the winning numbers here when they are drawn at 11:59 EST.)

Nobody came forward to claim the $366 million lottery prize on Saturday, however, three people (from Minnesota, North Carolina, and Texas) were able to match five balls claiming $1 million each.

Another hefty Powerball jackpot

Tonight’s $394 million jackpot has a cash value of $274.6 million, according to the Powerball organization. It will be the highest since March of last year when the pot reached $768.4 million.

Additionally, residents playing Powerball and Mega Millions in Pennsylvania now have the ability to purchase their tickets online via the iLottery platform. So, if you don’t feel like leaving the house, you still have the chance to hit it big.

But before you try and purchase a dozen tickets from the comfort of your home a few basic rules do apply.

  • Players must be 18 or older and be physically located in PA
  • You must set up an iLottery account
  • New account holders must submit proof of age and identity

The Powerball prize keeps going up

The Powerball prize has been steadily growing since it was last won on Nov. 2. Powerball tickets are only $2 each, so the return on investment, should you win, is extremely significant. But with any lottery game, the odds are never in your favor. The chances of winning Powerball are 1 in 292 million. To put things in perspective, you probably have a better chance at hitting a 15-team parlay bet at a sportsbook.

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Big 2019 Betting Numbers, Movement In Kentucky, NV Casino Updates

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The first full year of legalized sports betting outside of Nevada is in the books.

And, according to the figures, it did not disappoint.

While Pennsylvania and New Jersey bask in the glow of titanic state-sanctioned industries, other states are continuing to find ways to integrate legalized wagering. The latest effort comes from Kentucky. Surely, more will follow.

Once again, so much to unpack, so let’s get to the Rewind.

Pennsylvania, New Jersey sports betting took off in 2019

What a year for legalized sports betting. Particularly, there were two states we expected to do well but really kicked it into high gear.

The Pennsylvania sports betting market, particularly after the advent of online wagering, shined in 2019. In December alone, the PA industry took in a state monthly record of $342.6 million in wagers. Nearly 87% of that total came via mobile sportsbooks.

Last year, Pennsylvania saw regulated online sports betting come to life and expand to eight sportsbooks. And as Play Pennsylvania detailed, monthly handle via betting apps has spiked 477% since going live in July.

In 2019 alone, bettors in Pennsylvania laid down nearly $1.5 billion with legal books. However, Pennsylvania still looks up at New Jersey.

With a whopping $557.7 million wagered in December, the Garden State wrapped up 2019 with an astounding $4.5 billion in handle.

Like Pennsylvania, New Jersey has watched online betting quickly take hold. In December, nearly 90% of all bets went through an online sportsbook.

Both states were expected to rise to prominence after the US Supreme Court repealed PASPA. Both have answered the call to this point. Now we’ll see how they can improve and escalate even higher in 2020.

Is Kentucky sports betting on the horizon?

Gov. Andy Beshear provided some fodder during his State of the Commonwealth address.

He emphasized the need to “create the new revenue to meet the growing needs” of Kentucky. He noted how the state is “watching more than $500 million in gaming revenue go across the border to states like Indiana, Ohio and Illinois.”

Then, Beshear announced that Rep. Adam Koenig has filed a bill to legalize sports betting. It has the governor’s full support.

After multiple bills arose and fell short in 2019, both Beshear and Koenig express optimism about the latest filing, which removed the previously proposed stipulation that no bets can be placed on Kentucky-based teams and events.

On top of it all, Koenig’s bill would legalize online poker and daily fantasy sports. While online casinos remain out of the picture, Beshear said there could be more conversations down the road:

“I hope that isn’t the end of the conversation, because right now all of our neighboring states — all of them — most of them Republican-led, have embraced expanded gaming while we are being left behind.”

The bill received a unanimous 18-0 vote in the House Licensing, Occupations and Administrative Regulations Committee and is expected to get approval soon on the House floor.

Nevada casinos get new owners

A new team has taken over Las Vegas real estate occupied by MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay.

MGM Growth Properties LLC and Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc. have entered into an agreement to form a joint venture and acquire the real estate assets of the two properties for $4.6 billion. MGM Growth Properties will own 50.1% of the venture, while Blackstone will possess the remainder.

Once the deal is closed, MGM Resorts International will continue to manage and operate both MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay. The deal is expected to finalize in the first quarter of 2020. With both casinos spanning some 226 acres on the Strip, MGM Resorts’ annual rent will stand at $292 million.

Blackstone continues to add Strip properties; recently the group acquired the Bellagio for $4.25 billion.

Up north, Harrah’s Reno will soon have new ownership. Caesars Entertainment confirmed that a CAI Investments affiliate will acquire the property for $50 million.

Caesars has leased Harrah’s via VICI Properties, which will split the sale’s proceeds with Caesars.

Over the first half of the year, Harrah’s will continue to be part of the Caesars Rewards network. Then, new ownership – Reno City Center LLC – will take over and the property will transition into a “mixed-use, non-gaming property.”

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New Hampshire Sports Betting, Maryland On Deck, 2019 Numbers

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The year 2020 wasted little time making headlines.

States have already made rapid movement toward legalizing sports betting. Or, in the case of one state, beat New Year’s Day altogether in launching a regulated industry.

That was 2019 in a nutshell: proposed legislation, quick ratification and rapid growth of a newly legalized vertical.

As such, and to paraphrase Chandler Bing, could this week’s PlayUSA Rewind BE any more fitting?

Crowning New Hampshire sports betting

It’s like the Granite State didn’t want to exit 2019 without legalized sports betting.

As ceremoniously rung in by Gov. Chris SununuNew Hampshire sports betting kicked off Dec. 30, 2019. The governor wagered $82 on the New England Patriots to win the Super Bowl. (Whoops.)

Regardless, New Hampshire became the sixth state to launch regulated sports betting in 2019, as the New Hampshire Lottery leveraged its partnership with DraftKings Sportsbook to roll out an online sportsbook just before the new year.

Unlike its counterpart states, New Hampshire actually beat its initial timeline for launch; the Granite State anticipated a betting app hitting the market in January. That came after the state approved the contract between the NH Lottery and DraftKings in November.

DraftKings will split gross revenue 50/50 with the lottery, and it will have the opportunity to power up to 10 retail sportsbooks throughout the state.

Is Maryland sports betting on deck?

Technically, no. But discussion about legalizing the industry is about to pick up.

Sen. Chris West pre-filed SB 58, a bill that would allow horse tracks and casinos in Maryland to offer regulated sports betting. That said, the bill does not include online wagering.

Still, state legislators might pass–and state voters could approve–the bill this year, per Legal Sports Report. New forms of gambling in the state, after all, require constitutional amendments via referendums.

The pre-filed bill itself is brief. The two pages detail that five horse tracks and six casinos in the state would be eligible for sports betting licenses. West indicated that Maryland would tax wagering at a 20% rate, which is the same as table games.

As estimated by West, sports betting in Maryland would generate between $40 million and $60 million annually.

It’s still early in the year, obviously. Certainly, state lawmakers will hear/propose about money potentially being left on the table by not including online wagering. As West told Legal Sports Report, there will almost definitely be more bills proposed down the line. Though West cited that “all kinds of issues” could be raised with online sports betting; issues that could kill bills attempting to legalize wagering.

Sports betting 2019 will not be forgotten

The world changed in spring 2018. The US Supreme Court repealed PASPA. Several states, including New Jersey, launched the country’s first state-sanctioned sports betting industries outside of Nevada.

Yet the first signs of maturation came in 2019. And 2019 will seemingly forever be the foundational year of regulated sports betting in the United States. It was a blockbuster year of launches and record-breaking revenue, to say the least.

Between PASPA repeal and the close of 2019, 14 states rolled out legalized wagering, including 10 states with online betting. During that time, the public has wagered more than $15 billion via legal channels. That’s right, $15 billion. All but $4 billion came in 2019 alone.

And the craziest part of it all–aside from daily fantasy sports giants DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook becoming sports betting powerhouses–is that the country has not come close to full maturation.

So if you thought 2019 was a banner year for wagering, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

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