DC Sports Venues Could Be Home To Area's Biggest Sportsbooks
Legal sports betting in DC "likely won't take place until summer at the earliest," but area teams and venue operators are "weighing their options and deciding how they want to forge ahead," according to Rick Maese of the WASHINGTON POST. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser is "expected to sign legislation that grants four arena and stadium operators the option of creating Las Vegas-style sportsbooks on site." A city-sponsored study estimated that 150-200 DC businesses "might seek licenses to take sports bets, but the bill that was approved last month by the city council grants special privileges" to the four stadiums/arenas. If those operators "choose to get into the gambling business, no other entity can take sports bets legally within a two-block radius." Perhaps the "biggest winner" of this is Monumental Sports & Entertainment Chair & CEO Ted Leonsis, who has been an "outspoken proponent of legalized sports betting." MS&E would have to "partner with an established gaming company to run the sports betting operation and effectively would serve as landlord to a sportsbook." Leonsis' VC firm Revolution Growth has "invested in DraftKings," but MS&E has "not yet announced any gambling partners." Capital One Arena could have "betting windows and kiosks inside, but the grander vision is for a casino-style sportsbook -- betting, food, drinks, TVs -- that's accessible from both inside and outside the arena" (WASHINGTON POST, 1/10).