Caesars, ESPN Reach Media Partnership Deal

On May 14, 2019, ESPN announced a media content partnership with Caesars Entertainment. Similar to Caesars’ deal with Bleacher Report, its LINQ Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas will host a brand new ESPN-branded studio, where they will produce sports-betting-themed content and contribute to ESPN’s Daily Wager show. In addition to the studio, Caesars will serve as ESPN’s official odds data supplier throughout its platform. Per ESPN’s Vice President of Business Development Mike Morrison, “[w]e are poised to expand our coverage in a big way…
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Panel Suggests New York is Closing in on Limited Legalization of Sports Betting Statewide

According to a panel at the Cardozo Sports Law Symposium, New York continues to inch closer to joining neighboring states in legalizing sports betting. The panel, consisting of sports law professionals and state congressmen, discussed the current status of its legalization, impediments that continue to hinder its progress, and the benefits that could ultimately be capitalized upon. As noted by Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr., New York need look no further than its neighbors to the south to get a glimpse of the potential sports betting’s…
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Drawing the Line: Disney CEO Bob Iger Distances ESPN from Sports Betting

Earlier this month, Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger dismissed any notion that ESPN has plans to fully engulf itself in the sports betting arena. On Disney’s first-quarter earnings call, Iger was asked whether sports gambling is something that can co-exist within the typically family-friendly Disney Brand.  In a somewhat unexpected response, Iger explained that “I don’t see The Walt Disney Company, certainly in the near term, getting involved in the business of gambling, in effect, by facilitating gambling in any way.  I do think…
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NYS Gaming Commission Approves of Regulation which Permit Sports Betting at State Casinos

On February 4, 2019, the New York State Gaming Commission approved a proposed set of regulations, which would allow four New York State casinos to operate, and permit, in-person sports betting. According to one a member of the New York State Gaming Commission, “[t]he proposed regulations seek to protect the integrity of wagering and ensure the sports wagering remains within the scope of activity the legislature authorize.” Aside from the typical standards for operating sports betting, the proposed regulations layout a framework for how…
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Washington D.C. Mayor Signs Sports Betting Legislation

On Wednesday, January 23, Washington D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser signed the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act, bringing the nation’s capital one step closer to becoming the next American jurisdiction to legalize sports betting. Back in December, the D.C. Council voted 11-2 to legalize sports betting within the city’s stadiums, private businesses, and on a mobile app. Uniquely, this authorization made D.C. the first American jurisdiction without casinos to authorize sports books. With Major Bowser’s signature, the bill now enters a 60-day review period by the…
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Congress Enters Sports Gambling Arena: Proposes Nationwide Legislation

Sports and Entertainment Law Insider has been providing analysis of sports gambling since the topic emerged several years ago. In 2018, legislative interest in sports gambling rose to the forefront when the Supreme Court ruled the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was unconstitutional and overturned the ban on commercial sports betting. The ruling opened the door for states to legalize and regulate the gambling industry within their borders. Since that time, states have introduced or reintroduced legislation related to the legalization of sports gambling,…
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Let’s Go Live: NBA Announces Partnership to Distribute Real-Time Odds

On November 28, 2018, the NBA announced that sports data providers Genius Sports and Sportradar will have nonexclusive rights to distribute real-time, official data to licensed sportsbooks in the U.S. This is inclusive of both NBA and WNBA games, including preseason, regular season, and postseason play. This partnership comes on the heels of “live betting” beginning to take off; indeed, at a recent gaming conference in New York, a FanDuel executive noted that in-game betting amounts to approximately 40% of the amount wagered at its…
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Major Sports Leagues Cover the Spread, Win Sports Betting Spinoff Lawsuit

On November 16, 2018, Judge Shipp found in favor of the major sports leagues in a claim for damages under an injunction bond. Previously, the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NJTHA) had sought $3.4 million, plus interest and damages, from the NFL, NCAA, NBA, NHL, and MLB.  NJTHA claimed that, as a result of Judge Shipp’s 2014 injunction halting NJTHA and Monmouth Park from accepting sports bets, NJTHA suffered damages in excess of $10 million.  In response, lawyers for the leagues described the claim…
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Draftkings and Fanduel: “No Doubt” Right of Publicity Lawsuit Should be Dismissed

As we have previously reported, former NCAA football players, Akeem Daniels, Cameron Stingily, and Nicholas Stoner recently filed a lawsuit against Draftkings, Inc. and Fanduel, Inc. In their lawsuit, the former NCAA players allege that Draftkings and Fanduel violated an Indiana state right-of-publicity statute when they used the former players names, images, likenesses, and statistics in online fantasy sports contests. After the case was dismissed in United States District Court, it was appealed to the Seventh Circuit. A Seventh Circuit appellate panel certified the…
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Plaintiffs Win Big: NY Court Classifies Fantasy Sports Betting as Gambling

NY State Court Judge Connolly ruled on Monday that fantasy sports contests are gambling, thus rendering the state law legalizing their operation unconstitutional. The decision is a major blow to industry leaders like DraftKings Inc. and FanDuel Inc. However, the Justice noted that the decision fails to bind the lawmakers from excluding such contests from the penal law governing anti-gambling regulations. Plaintiffs brought the suit against Governor Cuomo and the NY State Gaming Commission opposing the law legalizing fantasy sports betting. The law originally legalized…
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