Mississippi Casinos Move Forward with Legal Sports Betting

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The ink was probably not even dry on the official court documents that changed to entire course of legal sports betting in the United States before states such as New Jersey and Mississippi took the first steps towards bringing this form of real money gambling to within their borders.

Early in May, the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of New Jersey against the most powerful professional sports leagues in the country. The decision opened the door to legal sports betting on a state-by-state basis. The Garden State led the fight and, in early June, Monmouth Racetrack opened the doors to its sportsbook to make New Jersey the second state in the country after Nevada to offer legalized sports betting.
Mississippi took a big step towards becoming the third state on board with a ruling last Thursday by the state’s Gaming Commission. The Magnolia State could be up and running with legalized sports betting as early as July 21. The new rules in place would allow Mississippi’s casinos to offer sports betting as part of their real money gambling options. The decision by the Gaming Commission was unanimous and all 28 real money casinos in the state are now in a position to add their own sportsbook to their facilities. A 30-day waiting period was put into place ahead of that July 21 start-up date.

The timing for this decision could not have been any better. The ultimate goal of just about every casino operator is to have some form of legal sports betting in place ahead of the new football season starting in early September. NFL games will probably bring in the biggest handle, but Mississippi is SEC Country, with college football expected to be a big part of the mix. Many of the casino operators in the state are working on their applications for a license. Some of the Mississippi casinos mentioned by name were the Choctaw’s Golden Moon, Silver Star and Bok Homa. The MGM Resorts’ Beau Rivage in Biloxi and the Gold Strike in Tunica Resorts are two of the bigger properties expected to be up and running with sports betting for football season.


Also in the mix are plans to allow real money online sports betting in the state. The new rules that were recently adopted would only allow an online sports bet to be placed within the confines of an actual brick-and-mortar Mississippi casino. This would allow betting through online and phone apps. However, a patron would have to physically be inside of a casino property for the bet to go through. The process involves the registration of a mobile betting account with that specific venue. When it comes to the projected revenue that legal sports betting could provide to Mississippi, the state tax on every sports bet has been set at 12 percent. Any wins of $10,000 or more will have to be reported to the state to still comply with federal gaming laws.

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