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 stories and rounding up key stories in sports betting, gaming, and the world of sports at large. You may have missed them, and they are worth reading.
Disconnect in Massachusetts?
Earlier this year, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker called on state lawmakers to legalize sports betting as a new stream of revenue for the state. More than a dozen bills were filed and though no hearings have been held yet, stakeholders and lawmakers are feeling generally positive about the odds of legalizing.
But Wednesday, House Democratic leaders shared their FY 2019-20 budget and sports betting wasn’t in it, according to the Associated Press. Baker’s proposed budget earlier this year called for $35 million in sports betting revenue, but it looks like he won’t get it — at least not this year.
“I think that is going to require a lot of discussion,” Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo told NECN. “I’m aware it could be an important source of revenue, but how we are going to do it … I don’t think it’s probably as easy as some people think it may be.”
A day after the budget was released, Baker made clear that he “respects” House leadership’s decision to take their time, according to MetroWest Daily News, but is still in favor of legalizing this year, though he allowed that maybe the timetable could be extended to the end of the year.
Massachusetts’ legislature meets yearround, so while the omission may indicate that lawmakers won’t move quickly — the goal initially was to have sports betting hearings as early as late April/early March — there’s still plenty of time in the session for action.
More of the most interesting, important stories
NEW JERSEY: March Madness leads to margin madness at NJ sportsbooks [NJOG]
Breaking: NJ #sportsbetting handle nearly sets record in March
Total handle: $372.4 mm up from $320 mm in Feb.
Online handle: $298.3 mm up from $258.8 mm in Feb
Revenue: $31.669 mm (record) up from $12.7 mm in Feb
— Robert DellaFave (@RobertDellaFave) April 12, 2019
Meadowlands/FanDuel snags $17.6M of the record $31.7M in NJ sports betting revenues for March, and Resorts Digital (mostly DraftKings) took another $7.3M. Most of the rest was Monmouth Park $2.7M and Ocean Resort – er, Ocean Casino $2.0M #SportsBiz pic.twitter.com/9AuyzfLHxW
— John Brennan (@BergenBrennan) April 12, 2019
SCOTUS, HERE WE COME: Battle over Wire Act may be headed to Washington. [US Bets]
LEGALIZE NOW!: A new study says Louisiana must legalize sports betting to stay competitive. [NOLA]
OHIO AT ODDS: Sports betting bills in House and Senate call for different regulators. [Columbus Dispatch]
JEOPARDY!: Professional sports bettor cleaning up on iconic game show and still going. [US Bets]
NY, NY: A state senator says Cuomo is warming to sports betting. Cuomo says his position hasn’t changed. [City&State]
ALL TALK: This podcast breaks down details of New Hampshire sports betting proposals. [NHPR]
NC SPORTS BETTING MOVES: A tribal bill with no mobile is passed out of the senate. [US Bets]
SUNSHINE STATE: Florida lawmakers “getting closer” to filing bill that would allow sports betting. [Florida Politics]
BREAKING IT DOWN: Inside the battle for the future of sports betting. [Fortune]
BEAT THE HOUSE: Is there an advantage for bettors when it comes to baseball? [Barrons]
SNOOKERED: Did the gaming industry hustle Rhode Island? [GoLocalProvidence]
ICYMI at Sports Handle and US Bets
In the wider world of sports
The final rounds of the Masters, the NBA playoffs start, the NHL playoffs continue, the NCAA hockey championship, Game of Thrones final season premiere. One of the best weekends of the year. https://t.co/sbdYLqac0w
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) April 12, 2019
PICK ME: Players every team should take in the first round of the NFL draft. [NFL]
EXPLORING NO. 1: Up close and personal with prospective No. 1 NFL draft pick Nick Bosa. [ESPN]
TIMING IS EVERYTHING: Exploring what makes an NBA player valuable [WSJ]
BUCKS FAVORED: A look at NBA playoff odds. [SI]
— Levi Damien (@LeviDamien) April 12, 2019