It’s information overload everywhere, and there’s not time enough to sleep and eat and stay fully apprised of what’s happening on this crazy blue dot of ours (two out of three ain’t bad). Here’s the weekend Sports Handle item, “Get a Grip,” recapping the week’s top U.S. sports betting stories, highlighting some fresh news, and rounding up key stories.
Top stories around our network this week
Just in case anyone interested in sports betting somehow forgot, this is the week of all weeks, the mother lode of all mothers, the time when devotees of the nation’s most popular sport (sorry, pickleball, keep trying, you’ll get there) return to putting their money where their mouth or heart or brain is and bet on NFL football. The season kicked off Thursday night with a Buffalo Bills romp over the defending champion Los Angeles Rams, which no doubt made a heavy volume of New York bettors happy.
That game and the full slate scheduled on Sunday represent just the start of a season that the American Gaming Association projects will attract bets from 46.6 million Americans, as there are now more places and ways to do it legally than ever before. That includes wagering in Kansas with its first first legal sportsbooks, as well as betting right outside the Cardinals’ stadium in Arizona, although some issues still need to be determined regarding how stadium sportsbooks will operate on game days.
Our writers and sites show the same heightened interest in sports betting during NFL season as do the general public and sportsbook operators, but we also cover much more, as this past week’s content demonstrates.
Maybe this is real, or maybe it’s fantasy
Did anyone think to tell Elon Musk?
And you were worried they were going away
Someone’s gotta win, so why not?
So glad you could make it
For these, we wait with bated breath
Happy anniversary, let’s have a party!
Nebraskans not wagering in near future
It’s been nearly two years since Nebraska voters passed a referendum to allow in-person casino gambling and sports betting, and while the state’s first gaming venue is set to open later this month, sports betting won’t get to Nebraska until at least 2023. Regulators there have crafted proposed rules, which have been shared with stakeholders, but the next step in the process won’t start at the earliest until an Oct. 21 public hearing of the state Racing and Gaming Commission.
According to the Lincoln Journal Star, Racing and Gaming Commission Director Tom Sage said the agency split the casino and wagering rulemaking processes because “we would have no place to have sports wagering” until casinos are opened.
Nebraska is on pace to be among the slowest jurisdictions to move from legal wagering to live wagering. It took the legislature six months to send a betting framework bill to Gov. Pete Ricketts after voters legalized. War Horse Gaming, which was awarded a provisional casino license in June, has plans to open temporary gaming spaces in Lincoln and Omaha, both of which will start with slot machines only.
— Jill R. Dorson
DraftKings opens Washington state sportsbooks
Just three days before Washington state celebrated its first anniversary of legal sports betting, DraftKings soft-opened two sportsbooks Tuesday within three miles of each other at the Tulalip and Quil Ceda Creek casinos.
Both casinos, which are located about 45 minutes north of Seattle, are owned by the Tulalip Tribes. With the new sportsbooks, DraftKings can now lay claim to operating in 19 states. By Sports Handle’s count, the Tulalip sportsbooks are the 11th and 12th to open in Washington in the year since sports wagering became legal, with that number expected to roughly double within the next 12 months.
— Mike Seely
Sports media personalities on the move
Philadelphia radio sports-talk host Mike Missanelli has signed a deal with Rush Street Interactive to serve as a podcaster and brand ambassador for BetRivers. A longtime ratings leader during drive time with 97.5 The Fanatic before leaving the station, Missanelli will tape two weekly podcasts that will be carried on BetRivers Network starting with the NFL season. He’ll also appear on multiple shows within and outside the sportsbook’s network, as well as in commercials across multiple radio, TV and digital channels.
Also, veteran sports analyst Jordan Schultz has reached a multi-year deal to join sports media brand theScore. He’ll focus on NFL and NBA coverage and betting insights in written and multi-media content for the outlet’s digital sports media platforms. His work will show up on theScore media app and other digital platforms, including its Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube channels, and podcasts. Schultz has worked previously for ESPN, Yahoo Sports, and the Los Angeles Times.
— Donald Emmons
More of the most important, interesting stories
NOT YOUR GRANDFATHER’S ESPN: ESPN makes big sports betting push [CDC Gaming Reports]
SPEED CAN KILL … OR HELP MAKE A KILLING: Wins — and losses — can pile up with sped-up sports betting [Associated Press]
YES, THAT MAKES SENSE: NFL season brings “the No. 1 acquisition moment” for sportsbooks [Yahoo]
DOES THAT REALLY MAKE SENSE?: Raiders massive Super Bowl liability at sportsbooks [Las Vegas Review-Journal]
The Raiders are the runaway leaders at sportsbooks in tickets and money wagered to win the Super Bowl. https://t.co/vQh2CAuf2j
— Vegas Nation (@VegasNation) September 4, 2022
DOUBTFUL JAMIE FOXX IS A BIG DEAL IN DENMARK ANYWAY: Government to ban famous people from gambling ads [The Copenhagen Post]
CATAWBAS GET IN THE GAME: North Carolina: Catawba Nation opens sportsbook inside temporary Two Kings casino [Associated Press]
THE KIDS! THINK OF THE KIDS!: What do we owe college athletes in the sports betting era? [Sportico]
NICE THAT THEY COULD GET TOGETHER: MaximBet strikes new official data, trading and personalized marketing partnership with Genius Sports [Business Wire]