PointsBet Gets Initial Green Light for MA Online Sportsbook License

Written By Matthew Bain on January 17, 2023
PointsBet no longer launching in Massachusetts, from playma.com

Another US sports betting platform has passed the first test for a Massachusetts online sportsbook license.

On Tuesday, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission gave an initial stamp of approval to PointsBet. PointsBet is legal and live in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Virginia. Barring the unexpected, Massachusetts will join that list in March.

PointsBet is one of six apps that applied for untethered Category 3 MA online sports betting licenses. All six now have passed the first hurdle: PointsBet, Betway, Betr, Bally Bet, FanDuel, and DraftKings.

The MGC plans to begin conducting a final vote on the Category 3 license applications on Wednesday.

Beyond Category 3 licenses, the MGC has already approved tethered Category 2 online licenses for Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, BetFanatics, WynnBET, and Barstool Sportsbook. It has also approved Category 1 retail licenses for MGM Springfield, Encore Boston Harbor, and Plainridge Park Casino.

Retail sports betting will launch Jan. 31, with a soft launch on Jan. 30. That will be in time for Super Bowl 57. Then, online sports betting is expected to launch in late February or March — potentially in time for March Madness. Postseason tournaments such as the NCAA Tournament will be the only time Massachusetts bettors can gamble on in-state colleges.

LOOK AHEAD: Potential Massachusetts Sports Betting Welcome Promos

How Likely Is It That PointsBet Massachusetts Will Launch?

It’s highly likely that PointsBet, and the other five online sports betting apps that cleared the MGC’s first hurdle, will receive final approval from the committee and gear up for launch — probably in March.

These companies have already met the MGC’s requirements to obtain a license. The final votes are more about collecting more information about each individual future Massachusetts sportsbook app than still needing to decide whether or not to approve.

All in all, we should have a very clear idea of which MA sports betting apps will be available in the coming days.

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Matthew Bain

Matthew Bain is currently the Content Manager at Catena Media’s national online lottery site, PlayiLottery. He used to be the News Content Manager at Catena Media, overseeing news content for the network’s highest-priority regional sites. Massachusetts is a young, promising gambling market, so PlayMA was one of his focuses. Prior to joining Catena Media in 2022, Matthew won 10 statewide and national journalism awards during six years as a reporter and editor for the USA TODAY Network. Matthew's work primarily appeared in the Des Moines Register, but he was also featured in the Detroit Free Press, Indianapolis Star, Arizona Republic, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and USA TODAY. Throughout his career, Matthew's bylines have also appeared in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Seattle Times, and Orange County Register.

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