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 (or fashionably late) Sports Handle item, “Get a Grip,” recapping the week’s top US sports betting stories, highlighting some fresh news, and rounding up key stories. Also check out this week’s Wild World of Gambling at US Bets.
Top stories this week from our network
Alabama oopsie? Gaming expansion fails in Senate
After the Alabama Senate on Tuesday voted down a gaming expansion, an Alabama lawmaker says he made a mistake by not calling for a vote on legalizing a lottery, casino gaming, and sports betting earlier in the session. The Senate voted 19-13 to approve SB 214, but that was two votes shy of the 21 needed. The bill called for a constitutional amendment that would have sent the decision to the voters.
The proposal, put forth by Sen. Del Marsh, would have created a lottery in the state, allowed for seven retail casinos, and allowed the Poarch Band of Creek Indians to renegotiate their compact to include casino gaming.
Earlier in the session, Marsh said he was confident he had enough votes to move the expansion forward. But as time wore on, votes began to evaporate.
“I warned everyone that the longer this went on, there was a risk of losing votes,” Marsh told AL.com. “I take full responsibility for that. I think it was a good bill. As you heard on the floor today, I did everything to give everybody the ability to participate in the legislation.”
Alabama lawmakers earlier this year reviewed a study that said gaming would be good for the state, and Gov. Kay Ivey supports an expansion. Sources say that even though the bill didn’t get out of the Senate, gaming could come up again during the 2021 session.
“Today’s vote by the Alabama Senate confirms more work must be done because this issue is too important to not get it right,” Ivey said in a statement this week. “No doubt gambling is complex and challenging, but I remain committed to giving the people of Alabama the final say.”
There is a bill outlining a framework for sports betting in the House, but no referendum bill.
— Jill R. Dorson
This year’s Cinderella?
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When you're a skilled bettor but your sports betting app limits you to $17.08 bets pic.twitter.com/JAUrK3EVQU
— Circa Sports (@CircaSports) March 7, 2021
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EL JEFE: The boss is bringing betting to the Volunteer State [Nashville Biz]
RISK AND AUTONOMY: Some credit unions, banks blocking online gaming [CDC Gaming]
THREE COMMAS: DraftKings’ Jason Robins is now a billionaire [BostonBizJournal]
WINDY CITY: Chicago puts out RFP for Las Vegas-style casino resort [Casino Beats]
BLAZIN’ BETS: BetMGM offering digital specials at Buffalo Wild Wings [CDC Gaming]
SPIN CYCLE: Flutter considers spinning out FanDuel to boost value [CNBC]
UP IN THE AIR: Embracing the uncertainty, and betting DeShaun Watson to win NFL MVP [RotoGrinders]
THE JET: Sports betting giant strikes deal with Kenny Smith [Awful Announcing]
TRIBAL RESPONSE: Reasons Minnesota should proceed with caution on legal betting [News Tribune]