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Fiona Simmons January 25, 2023 3 min read
Massachusetts’ Gambling Commission Votes in Favor of Extra Betting Markets
Massachusetts’ Gambling Commission voted in favor of adding extra additions to the state’s sports betting catalog
The launch of Massachusetts’ sports betting market is around the corner. Authorities in the Bay State used the last few days to discuss what activities should people be allowed to wager on. The list contains some surprising entries.
MA Punters Will Be Able to Bet on Drafts and Award Events
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission approved the catalog of events people would be allowed to place wagers on. Evidently, once the market launches, punters will be able to bet on sports. In addition, they will be allowed to bet on sports awards, professional drafts and even the Oscars.
The sporting event catalog will include ML drafts, ML awards, special events, the Oscars, Emmys, Nathans and ML eating, Bill Speros, a sports betting expert and columnist, shared on Twitter.
While Commissioner Eileen O’Brien believed that sports betting should be strictly reserved for sporting events and opposed the introduction of betting markets, the final vote passed with three votes in favor of the extra markets.
This will turn Massachusetts into one of the rarer states where betting on drafts is allowed. On the contrary, local bettors will not be allowed to place wagers on virtual sports, esports, Jai alai, chess, Cornhole, Olympic events and Russian events.
Other Entries Might Be Added to the Catalog at a Later Date
Olympic events might be included in future iterations of Massachusetts’ sports betting catalog. However, the Gambling Commission is still not sure how to handle certain Olympic events where the scoring systems are subjective. This includes ice skating and gymnastics – markets that are popular in some states but illegal in others.
There is still more than a year remaining before the beginning of the next Olympics, so authorities will have ample time to discuss the subject.
In addition, the MA regulator does not want to allow wagering on Russian and Belarusian sporting events amid the ongoing war in Ukraine. Such events might be included in the catalog at later dates, depending on how the market and the global political and economic situation develop.
Massachusetts will launch sports betting just in time for the Super Bowl. The market is set to go live at 10 am on January 31. This time was picked to avoid rush hours and mitigate the risk of uncontrollable crowds.
The Bay State is also preparing to launch mobile sports betting in March. However, there are still discussions about gambling advertisements. The Gambling Commission is in favor of tougher marketing regulations that would lead to lower gambling harm rates.