With sports betting potentially in the offing last year the state of Mississippi cleared the way by repealing the portion of its gaming law that prohibited sports betting as long as it was limited to casinos. That important step resulted in a tale of two sports betting markets in the neighboring states of Mississippi and Louisiana, as was made clear in “Changing the Game: the Legal and Regulatory Impacts of a PASPA repeal,” a session held Monday at the Global gaming Expo (G2E), which is taking place this week at the Sands Expo & Convention center in Las Vegas.
With the Supreme Court repeal of PASPA in mid-May, Mississippi needed just 10 weeks to roll out sports betting on August 1, just before the NFL preseason. “It has worked very smoothly,” said Jay McDaniel, deputy director, Mississippi Gaming Commission. “We have 28 commercial operators, 21 of which have a sports book. We are limited geographically; we don’t have Internet or remote wagering statewide but you can do it on-property. Operators were prepared as were regulators. In the first two months, I think results have exceeded expectations of our operators. Annual earnings are expected to be around $40 million, which is good for our state, which has a small population state.”