Feds Discover NCAA Game Rigging Attempt, Mafia Connected

On October 3, 2019, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York unsealed a series of indictments against alleged crime family La Cosa Nostra (the Colombo Family). Among those arrested were Benjamin Bifalco, an associate of the Colombo Family, and Joseph Amato Jr., the son of an alleged Colombo Family captain Joseph Amato. Bifalco was charged with violating 18 U.S.C. Section 224(a), which makes it unlawful to influence a sporting contest “in any way, by bribery. . . .” Per the…
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Washington D.C. Arena Will Be America’s First Sports Venue with Sportsbook

Capital One Arena, the home of the Washington Wizards and Washington Capitals, is about to become the first major sports venue in the United States to have a sportsbook. Monumental Sports & Entertainment, owner of the teams and the arena, announced a partnership with sports betting operator William Hill US. The sportsbook will span multiple floors and be accessible to both non-ticketholders and ticketholders for certain events. Expected to open in 2020, the sportsbook will be open year-round and is accessible to the public from…
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FanDuel Owner to Become Largest Gambling Company in $6 Billion Deal, Targets U.S. Sports Betting Market

Flutter Entertainment PLC, the owner of Paddy Power and FanDuel, announced a $6 billion deal to purchase The Stars Group Inc. (TSG) and become the world’s largest online gambling company. Flutter, an Irish gambling conglomerate, owns gambling websites Paddy Power and Betfair, in addition to sports betting websites FanDuel, Sportsbet, and TVG. Meanwhile, Canadian company TSG owns the world’s largest poker website, PokerStars, as well as BetStars and Full Tilt Poker. The combined value of the companies is approximately $12 billion. Further, the combined…
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NFL Officially Partners With DraftKings for Daily Fantasy

On September 26, 2019, the NFL announced that it has selected DraftKings to be its first official daily fantasy partner. Notably, this partnership deal does not include sports betting. In a joint statement, the companies stated that their partnership includes “exclusive sponsorship of the daily fantasy sports category with access to NFL branding and more.” NFL Chief Revenue Officer Renie Anderson said, “[d]aily fantasy football has been a tremendous vehicle for fans of all types to deepen their engagement with the NFL.” Over 11…
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NFL Partners with Australian Sports Bookmaker, Signals Future Cooperation in America

With the emergence of widespread sports betting in the USA, we’ve seen the vast majority of the major sports leagues – including the NBA, MLB, and NHL – join forces with sports books, allowing the bookmakers to use live statistics and official licensing on their platforms. Notably absent from these deals, however, has been the NFL. While ESPNews recently rebranded to show live odds and statistics concurrently with its primary programming, nothing official from the NFL may be shown—the sport is listed as Professional Football,…
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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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NHL Partners with MGM

On October 29, 2018, the NHL announced a partnership with MGM Resorts International and became the second North American sports league to reach a partnership with the professional sports betting operator. As per the terms, the NHL officially designated MGM Resorts as the official sports betting partner of the NHL. Specifically, the deal allows MGM Resorts to host NHL promotional opportunities and establishes MGM Resorts as an official resorts partner of the NHL. Further, the deal provides MGM Resorts access to the NHL’s proprietary game…
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NCAA’s Response to Legal Gambling: Rule Changes and Support for Federal Regulation

In response to the May 14, 2018 Supreme Court ruling which opened the door for states to legalize sports gambling, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) released a statement outlining its reaction to the decision. The statement is headlined with support for federal regulation of the sports gambling industry as a “necessary safeguard to the integrity of college sports.” In addition, the NCAA Board of Governors has temporarily suspended its rule prohibiting championship events from being held in states that offer legal sports betting in…
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Supreme Court Bets on Federalism in Sports Gambling Ruling

On Monday, May 14, 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down a federal statute controlling the states’ ability to regulate sports gambling, destroying Nevada’s monopoly and opening the door for other states to get in on the multi-billion dollar industry. In its majority opinion, the court voted to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA). Although PAPSA did not make sports gambling itself a federal crime, the Act made it unlawful for states to promote, license,…
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eSports Multibillion Dollar Question

As one of the fastest growing industries today, eSports is starting to garner the attention of not just investors, but also gamblers. The interest in eSports from sports bettors is predictable, given that this industry generated $325 million in revenue in 2015 from merchandise, media rights, advertising, and tickets alone. In fact, according to the market research firm Eilers & Krejcik, the unregulated eSports betting market generated around $7.4 billion in betting turnover in 2016 and is expected to reach $23 billion by 2020. As…
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