Connecticut Targets Oct. 7 for Online Sports Betting Launch
Just two days after Gov. Ned Lamont announced that Connecticut online sports betting was ready, a reported date has been set to launch the market.
Lamont's Chief of Staff, Paul Mounds, said in an interview on a pre-recorded local Sunday morning show (WFSB-TV's CT 21) that the full online sports betting launch in the state will be Oct. 7. It does not appear that online casinos will launch that day, though.
The full interview can be seen on Sept. 19 on WFSB, Channel 3 in Hartford.
That launch day, a Thursday, will be in time for NFL Week 5 betting. The Los Angeles Rams will visit the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday Night Football that night.
Mounds said there is still a lot of work to be done in all aspects from infrastructure to partnerships and the state has been in close talks with the state’s two tribal nations (Mashantucket Pequot, Mohegan Tribes) and the Connecticut Lottery, according to the report.
The Mohegan Tribe is partnered with FanDuel Sportsbook, while the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe entered into an agreement with DraftKings Sportsbook. Rush Street Interactive is the third operator after reaching a deal with the Connecticut Lottery. DraftKings Casino and FanDuel Casino will also offer online casino games.
Speaking with local media on Tuesday, Lamont mentioned the Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun tribal casinos could launch retail sports betting before the Connecticut online market becomes active. They could start accepting bets in the casinos on Oct. 1, if not sooner.
“My instinct is the tribes, hopefully, will do something collaboratively at the same time on site, and we're just waiting for the final approval so we can get everything going online as well,” Lamont said.
Federal Register Publish
On Wednesday, the Connecticut gaming compact with the tribes was published in the Federal Register, another step for the state to go live with online sports betting soon. Both tribes had been informed on Sept. 9 that the revisions to their gaming compacts had been approved.
“Today’s approval from the federal Department of the Interior is historic and begins an exciting new chapter for the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation,” Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation Chairman Rodney Butler said of the federal approval. “This expansion will allow us to enhance investments in support of our tribe, to contribute additional revenue to the State of Connecticut, and to provide a new level of entertainment for our guests.”
Last month, the Connecticut General Assembly’s Regulation Review Committee approved the regulations for sports betting, leaving the department to continue the licensing and review process to certify the platform providers.
Online sportsbooks are currently undergoing testing to ensure each of the operators meet the licensing and regulatory requirements set by the state.
Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media (NJ.com) in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.