Gov. Charlie Baker vowed to bring legal sports betting to Massachusetts before he leaves office in the fall of 2022. If that happens, the biggest sportsbook brands in the country will line up to compete for your betting business.
How will they do it? By offering you a variety of sportsbook promotions and bonuses. That means free bets, risk-free bets, matching deposit bonuses, odds boosts, profit boosts and more. Got questions? We’ve got answers below.
Best potential online sports betting bonuses in Massachusetts 2022
Here’s a look at the different types of bonuses MA sports bettors may have available if the state legalizes sports betting:
The free bet is the original and ultimate no-strings-attached sportsbook bonus. Most of the time, the free bet is a small one, but it is what it says it is: Sportsbooks give you bonus cash that you can use to place a bet.
The only stipulation is that you have to use the cash on a wager, which means you can’t just get the money and immediately withdraw it. Of course, you can do that with anything you win on the bet unless some other term or condition requires you to keep betting.
The Boston-headquartered DraftKings Sportsbook has offered a substantial $50 free bet to new customers in the past, making it the go-to sportsbook for this type of bonus.
The risk-free bet has emerged as the most popular bonus lately among online sportsbooks. It’s like a second chance on your first bet. In other words, a sportsbook will refund anything you lose on your first bet up to a specific limit.
The refund usually takes the form of site credit or a free bet. That means you’re going to have to bet again, but anything you win will be yours to keep, whether you get it on your first try or your second.
FanDuel’s online sportsbook is one of the originators of this type of bonus, and the risk-free bet of up to $1,000 that it offers new customers is still one of the best for this option.
Deposit matching bonuses
A deposit bonus is the original and ultimate strings-attached bonus. The strings include the fact that you need to make a deposit to claim the bonus funds and bet a certain amount to release them. Deposit-matching bonuses match a certain percentage of your deposit up to a specific limit and release that bonus to you according to the bonuses’ wagering requirements.
Most of the time, that percentage is 100%, and while the wagering requirement might force you to bet as much as 20 times your bonus or more, you will find deposit bonuses with just a one-time wagering requirement.
BetRivers Sportsbook has become America’s deposit-match bonus king, offering matching funds up to $250 to new customers with just a one-time wagering requirement.
No deposit bonuses
A no deposit bonus generally is similar to a free bet. The difference is you can use it as a single free bet or turn it into multiple bets. It generally takes the form of bonus cash with a wagering requirement that you need to meet. These days, free bets and risk-free bets have replaced no deposit bonuses at most top online betting sites.
The odds boost is a sportsbook promo that offers you better-than-normal odds on a certain bet. Sometimes, sportsbooks will even let you choose the bet you want to boost. The catch is that you have to win your bet for the enhanced odds to have any value.
The BetMGM Sportsbook has emerged as a leader when it comes to odds boosts, offering 20-1 boosts on big games and local teams or UFC fight odds, plus parlay boosts and other promos offering better odds and bonuses.
The profit boost is a sportsbook promo offering you a bigger payout on certain bets, usually a specific percentage increase. Of course, you have to win the bet for the profit boost to have any value. Caesars Sportsbook delivers big-time on profit boosts, potentially offering a 33% profit boost on NBA odds and NHL odds, up to three per day, for example.
Are sportsbook bonuses worth it?
Your decision on whether a particular sportsbook bonus or promo is worth pursuing should depend on a number of factors. First, any free bets that you can get without having to put up your own money are generally good ones to claim. Just follow the terms and conditions of the free bet and enjoy any winnings you’re able to procure.
You’ll need to take a closer look at any risk-free bet offer. Sure, this type of bonus is insurance against a losing bet, returning that bet to you, but the refund is in site credit. Just make sure that site credit only has a one-time wagering requirement, meaning you have to bet it, but just once, and anything you win will be yours to keep. Otherwise, it might not be worth placing the risk-free bet to begin with.
The same holds true for deposit-matching bonuses, as the value depends on any wagering requirements. Those that have far too onerous playthrough requirements may be hard to get your hands on, providing very little or no value at all. Just make sure to read the terms and conditions so you know what you’ll need to do. If the wagering requirements sound unmanageable, don’t even try.
Finally, deciding whether an odds boost, profit boost or other sports betting promo is worth it starts with a close look at the bet itself. A boost to the odds or profit of a bet you might otherwise have made at the original betting odds can certainly be worth trying. If the bet doesn’t stand a chance of winning, however, it’s not. Losing bets with boosted odds or profits aren’t worth a thing. In other words, there’s no value there, no matter how big the boost.
Playthrough requirements for online sportsbook bonuses
Playthrough requirements, otherwise known as wagering requirements, are the thing that makes sure you can’t just take the bonus money a sportsbook gives you and withdraw it to your bank account. The requirements mean you have to bet the bonus money you receive a specific number of times before you can actually withdraw it and walk away.
Different bonuses have different wagering requirements, but the lower the number, the better it is for you as a bettor.
Best sportsbook sign-up bonuses
Here are some examples of the best sign-up offers available for new players at sports betting sites that could potentially launch in Massachusetts if it becomes legal for them to do so:
|Sportsbook||Free Bet||Risk-Free Bet||Deposit Match||Odds Boost||Profit Boost|
|DraftKings||$50 with any deposit||N/A||20% up to $1,000||Lebron James to score more than 25.5 points and the LA Lakers to win, boosted to +270||25% MLB profit boost good on any MLB game|
|FanDuel||N/A||Up to $1,000||N/A||Red Sox or Yankees to get a hit in first plate appearance, boosted from -120 to +150||N/A|
|BetRivers||N/A||N/A||100% up to $250||House specials boosting the odds on selected bets with odds of +200 or higher||20% profit boost on MLB bets with -200 odds or shorter|
|BetMGM||$10 weekly bet||Up to $1,000||N/A||Odds on Bruins, Maple Leafs and Lightning three-team all-to-win parlay boosted to +400||15% parlay profit boost on any three-leg UFC 270 parlay|
|Caesars||N/A||Up to $1,100 in first-bet insurance||N/A||Patriots win and Damien Harris first TD scorer, boosted to +1100||33% profit boost on NBA and NHL bets|
In addition to new player bonuses, odds boosts and profit boosts, online sportsbooks will often run promos for the biggest event in sports. For example, DraftKings and FanDuel both offered 56-1 odds on Super Bowl LVI moneyline bets, and BetMGM ran a 20-1 odds boost promo for Super Bowl LVI.
Daily and weekly promos
Sportsbooks also may run a variety of daily, weekly or monthly promos. For example, Caesars runs various three-team parlay boosts every day for different sports in season, and BetMGM runs a promo giving away a $10 free bet to anyone who placed $50 in qualifying bets the week before.
Parlay insurance is a simple promo that sportsbooks will run for various major sports. The insurance is free, although you may need to opt in. It offers you a refund on your bet if you hit every leg on a parlay except one. There’s often a limit on the size of the bet and a minimum number of legs for the parlay. FanDuel has offered parlay insurance for collections of NBA, NHL, MLB and NFL games in addition to same-game parlays and multi-sport parlays.
Can I have accounts at multiple online sportsbooks?
Signing up for accounts is free, so there’s no technical reason you can’t have an account at every online sportsbook that’s legal in your state. Doing so will let you benefit from all the ongoing promos and bonuses that work for you, providing that meeting all the wagering requirements doesn’t get too expensive.
Just look closely at the terms and conditions of each bonus. Only get involved with promos and bonuses you think you can squeeze some value out of.