Connecticut Sports Betting: Legal Update June 2021

Connecticut 1Sports Betting Legalized – The Details

Sports betting has been legalized in the state of Connecticut with a format that is very similar to both Michigan and Arizona. The reason for the resemblance has to do with tribal casinos and the agreements needed in order to get sports betting off the ground. Connecticut has partnered with these casinos and will be allowing them to run retail sportsbooks as well as launch a single online sportsbook and online casino each.

On top of the tribal sportsbooks and casinos, the State Lottery will also be able to launch a single online sportsbook and online casino platform. Then, the Lottery will be rewarded 15 skins for retails sportsbook betting, with the only restriction being that those retail sportsbooks are not within 25 miles of either of the two tribal casinos in the state.

State Tribes

The Mashantucket Pequot Tribe and the Mohegan Tribe are the two tribes in the State of Connecticut that offer gambling and were at the forefront of this deal. As in a few other states like Arizona, sports betting often needs approval from the state tribes, which run the casinos within Connecticut. The Tribes have long been against sports betting within the state due to legislators not wanting to budge on allowing exclusive rights over sports betting. This has led to a stalemate over the last few years, but things are beginning to change as both sides are in need of revenue.

Connecticut Sports Betting Bills

There were two sports betting bills floating within Connecticut legislation. One being SB570, which was the first to go through hearings. The other, the eventual bill leading to legalized sports betting was SB146. This bill gave the tribes the control they wanted over sports betting and allowed for the compromise with the State Lottery.

Sports Betting Legislation Timeline

2017 – Before the federal ban was lifted on sports betting where the states could determine legalization, Connecticut signed a gaming expansion to have sports betting regulations put in place if the federal ban was going to be removed.

2018 – The federal government removes the ban on sports betting, giving states full rights to determine how they want to address the matter of online gambling and sports betting.

2020 – After nothing was done in 2019, the Connecticut state government in 2020 saw two sports betting bills, H51568 and S 21, but both failed to progress after a few hearings.

2021 – Bill passes and online sports betting as well as online casinos get ready for launch. Both tribes will operate retail sportsbooks as well as an online casino and online sportsbook. The State Lottery is given 15 retail sportsbook skins and one online sportsbook, and online casino skin.

DraftKings Partners With Mashantucket & Foxwoods Resort Casino

draftkingsmobileappicon-115x115The Mashantucket Pequot is the owner of the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut. They have already begun to prepare for sports betting down the road and partnered with DraftKings to operate as their official sportsbook. Given DraftKings’ close ties to the New England area, this comes as no surprise. With regulations still unclear, we are not sure if mobile and online sports betting would go through DraftKings or they could just operate as an in-person sport betting location only. This is a positive for how quick sports betting could be available to the public, but state legalization is still pending. DraftKings certainly wants to be first in the sports betting market, especially with mobile wagering.

Retail Sports Betting

casino promo codes iconRetail sports betting can be referred to as in-person sports betting or wagering, or brick and mortar casinos, which would be a lock if everything gets cleared. With the tribes already owning licensed casinos within the state and expansion on sports betting now being voted on. Foxwoods Resort and Mohegan Sun are rival casinos operated by individual state tribes. As mentioned above, Foxwoods Resort has already partnered with DraftKings, and that could spell FanDuel moving in on Mohegan Sun. At the moment, they offer plenty of casino games, and in-person sports betting should be coming soon to each. There is also a rumored expansion on table games, as that tends to be the case with states trying to come to agreements with state tribes and their tribal casinos.

Mohegan Sun 

1 Mohegan Sun Blvd, Uncasville, CT 06382

(860) 862-8000

Foxwoods Resort Casino

350 Trolley Line Blvd, Ledyard, CT 06338

(860) 312-3000

Offshore Sportsbooks

Since there are currently no legal betting options in Connecticut, offshore betting has become the most popular way. This is one of the reasons why the states are beginning to regulate and legalize as they don’t collect gambling revenue off offshore sites, and offshore sites are also not legally obligated to pay out a winning bet or payout an account balance if they are shut down. There is a lot of risk for offshore betting, and having online/retail sports betting would wipe out that market for those 21 and over. We have seen substantial dropoffs in offshore use for legalized states, although Iowa has still had age groups 18-20 target these offshore sites due to the age limit being 21 and over for United States sports betting.

Mobile/Online Sports Betting

Mobile and online sports betting has become a very popular way to bet on sports over the last few years. With DraftKings and FanDuel launching strong online/mobile products, we have begun to see other sportsbooks roll out their own. Also, in a covid-19 era, in-person betting isn’t a priority for anyone, and safety restrictions surely have accelerated the way lawmakers view mobile and online betting. If approved in the state of Connecticut, that means you could join one of these sportsbooks with an account and bet legally as long as you are in an approved state. For example, if the states in the New England area all legalize sports betting, you could roam across state lines and still be able to bet. If Connecticut was to not allow mobile and online sports betting, it would certainly hurt their revenue and also limit consumer options.

FanDuel DFSDaily Fantasy Sports In Connecticut

Connecticut is one of the many states that do allow playing daily fantasy sports. FanDuel, DraftKings, and Yahoo are the main three DFS operators and have had no issues with operating in Connecticut since the beginning. They were legalized back in 2017 by Gov. Dannel Malloy. Through all the legal troubles they had after, Connecticut had no problems. With DraftKings headquarters in Massachusetts, making sure legalization in New England states was key.

Sports Teams To Bet On In Connecticut

new england patriotsWith Connecticut not being home to any professional sports teams, we often find the residents split between New York and Massachusetts. For baseball, most of the state is either rooting for the Yankees or the Red Sox, given both are neighboring states, and the games are only a quick drive or train ride away. Both the Red Sox and Yankees are big market teams for baseball and certainly draw a lot of betting interest in and outside of the state.

There are three football teams that generally fall in line with Connecticut rooting interests, and the Patriots are one of them. Being blessed with a dynasty over the last 20 years, all three teams are now in rebuild mode as the Giants and Jets both search for answers at quarterback. We have our eyes on any of those Connecticut residents looking to switch teams when times get tough.

With the Hartford Whalers being long gone in the NHL and the rivals of the Boston Bruins, some older hockey fans have found fandom in the New York teams with the Islanders and Rangers. Newer hockey fans have joined the nearby Boston Bruins, who have been one of the Eastern Conference’s top teams over the last decade.

We will need to monitor how Connecticut handles college sports betting as every state has different limitations. The University of Connecticut has had stellar basketball programs over the years and would be a popular bet if allowed. Boston College and the Boston Celtics would also see some sports bets.

Connecticut HuskiesNo In-State Collegiate Betting

While betting on college games is not prohibited, there are many restrictions inside the bill that was passed. A common theme for states to showcase that they care about the issues collegiate betting can cause is to ban in-state school betting. This means that in Connecticut, you cannot bet on the University of Connecticut.

With the lack of any professional teams in the state, this means that there will basically be no wagers on any in-state sporting events.

Connecticut Sports Betting FAQ

Is Sports Betting In Connecticut Legal?

Sports betting is technically legal in the state of Connecticut, but the licensing process is just beginning. Not sportsbook, retail or online, has launched yet in the State of Connecticut. Therefore, you cannot wager just yet.

Who can Opperate Legal Sports BettingIn Connecticut?

The two-state tribes and the Connecticut Lottery are the three operators who will be awarded skins. Each one of these can operate one online sportsbook and one online casino each. The tribes will each get one retail sportsbook skin, while the Lottery gets 15.

What Were the Previous Connecticut Sports Betting Laws?

The previous laws in place are that sports betting is legal, but no regulation has been put in place. The two public bills that are currently in voting would allow retail and mobile sports betting, making it available to those 21 years of age or older.

Are There Casinos In Connecticut?

There are casinos in the state of Connecticut, as both tribes own and operate one each. Mohegan Sun is one of them, and the other is Foxwoods Resort and Casino. Both have been operating in the state for quite some time now.

Who Are the Connecticut State Tribes?

Connecticut has two main state tribes, one of them being the Mashantucket and the other is the Mohegan Tribe. Both operate casinos in the state and have wanted full control over the state’s sports betting regulations if it were to go live.

Is There Online Sports Betting In Connecticut?

There is currently no legal way to sports bet in the state of Connecticut. The only way is to use offshore sites, which is not recommended given the issues that can arise with payouts and site safety. Legal sports betting would negate these sites.

Is Daily Fantasy Sports Legal In Connecticut?

Yes, daily fantasy sports are allowed and legal in the state of Connecticut. Back in 2017, a bill was passed to legalize daily fantasy sports to clear up any ties it currently had to being labeled as sports betting in the state.

Is FanDuel Betting In Connecticut?

No, FanDuel Sportsbook does not currently operate in Connecticut. They only allow daily fantasy sports operations. However, FanDuel Sportsbook could join as an operator once the state approves legalized sports betting.

Is DraftKings Betting In Connecticut?

DraftKings only operates as a daily fantasy sports website in the state of Connecticut. They did partner up with Foxwoods Resort and Casino, clearing the way for them to launch as a sportsbook in the state once everything gets approved.

When Will Sports Betting Launch?

The Start of the NFL season in September is the target date as of right now. This target date aligns with Maryland and Arizona as all three passed sports betting early in the year. Everyone wants to get in on the NFL sports betting action.

  
Jason Guilbault has been writing and podcasting in the fantasy sports world for over five years. You can find his work at Daily Fantasy Cafe. He is an avid Tottenham fan, and follows the Boston sports teams. When he isn’t diving into stats, he is enjoying the outdoors or down at the local brewery.