Not sure what to dislike more: January and how long it is, or the person who first noticed how long January is and pointed it out to everyone and not everyone notices how long January is.
Fortunately, a long month translates to a busier month in the US online gambling world. And, fortunately, that world did not disappoint last week, from potential cheating in daily fantasy sports to the continued expansion of retail and online sports betting nationwide.
Time to unpack the news and rewind.
A big DraftKings DFS payday comes with allegations of cheating
A Millionaire Maker winner emerged from the DraftKings daily fantasy sports field – along with a cloud of controversy.
Former “Bachelor” contestant Jade Roper Tolbert came away with the contest’s top prize of $1 million. A reality star bringing attention to the daily fantasy sports industry? Score.
Then, independent investigations began. And it seems as if Tolbert, whose husband also plays DFS, might have violated DraftKings’ terms of service as well as several state laws pertaining to daily fantasy contests.
Tolbert and her husband both maxed out with 150 entries at $20 each for the Millionaire Maker, which is DraftKings’ big-pool contest during the NFL wild card weekend. According to her tweet confirming it, Tolbert finished atop the standings to claim the top prize.
The problem, however, is the likelihood that the couple worked together to, in essence, find a loophole in DraftKings’ maximum entry limit, one that is also supported by state laws.
Per DraftKings’ guidelines, the DFS operator does not allow “group play,” which is “team-building complementary lineups which serve to work together and executing a strategy that may create any unfair advantage over individual play.”
That said, until (and if) it is proven, this all remains speculation.
First online gambling partnerships form in Michigan
The gears in Michigan wasted little time getting into motion.
Both PointsBet and The Stars Group announced partnerships with land-based casinos, allowing the bookmakers to move forward with obtaining sports betting licenses in the state and explore other online gambling options.
The two operators – both already active in the national expanding gambling marketplace – each teamed with a tribe to power online and retail sportsbooks in the state. PointsBet will also develop an online casino, while The Stars Group has another market in which to launch its Fox Bet brand.
Certainly much more action is expected in Michigan, as 24 other casinos could potentially pair off with sports betting, online casino and online poker operators.
From MGM to Penn National to DraftKings and FanDuel, a cornucopia of stakeholders sit on the threshold of potential entry into Michigan.
The race is on.