News and Analysis

The North Carolina State Lottery Commission has set the date that the legal sports betting market will open, and it's midday on March 11th. Pre-registration will begin on March 1st. 

Commission Chair Ripley Brand commented in local news that; "The plan approved today means that North Carolinians will be able to place bets on their favorite teams in many of this year's college basketball conference tournaments, including men's tournaments in the ACC, Conference USA, the MEAC, and the AAC, as well as throughout the men's and women's NCAA tournaments.

"Bets on sporting events have been made for as long as those events have taken place, but this time they will be legal, they will be done securely and fairly, and they will be made under rules designed to encourage responsible gaming."

There are 12 operator licenses available in North Carolina, and nine applications have been received so far. Operators seeking permits must partner with a sports team, league, or venue in NC.

BetMGM (with Charlotte Motor Speedway) and DraftKings (with Nascar) have already announced they will launch. On Wednesday, Caesars joined the rabble, announcing it will go live on March 11th after expanding its relationship with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Fanatics also plans to launch after agreeing to a partnership with the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes, and ESPN Bet has joined forces with Quail Hollow Golf Club.

Two Online Sports Betting Bills Introduced in Mississippi

In-person sports betting has been legal in Mississippi since 2018 (this also allows gamblers to place online bets, but only at licensed casino premises). Still, state legislators continue pushing online betting, as two new bills were introduced this week -HB271 and HB635.

This is the sixth consecutive attempt by lawmakers in the state to extend gambling laws. Last year's attempt passed, making way for a comprehensive analysis of sports betting in the state, but its reach, which initially included online sports betting, was significantly reduced at the committee stage.

Let's hope Mississippi lawmakers have better luck this legislative session and we can finally see some movement in the Magnolia State.

The Nevada Gaming Control Board Hacked

The Nevada Gaming Control Board has announced via X that it has been hacked, resulting in the Board taking down its site until it can restore control. Until then, the Board is working on getting a temporary site up and running for those seeking information and relevant web links regarding gambling in Nevada.

This is Nevada's third major hack after MGM and Caesars were attacked last year. The NGCB has not announced any more details or disclosed what information has been compromised.  

Atlantic City Casinos To Ban Smoking Inside

This headline almost seems like a blast from the past - hasn't everywhere already banned smoking inside? Apparently not, because the word on the legislative string this week is that New Jersey's Atlantic City Casinos are finally considering prohibiting indoor smoking.

While the rest of New Jersey banned indoor smoking in 2006, currently, it is permitted on 25% of the casino floor. Health-conscious Atlantic City workers have long been fighting for reform, but concerned stakeholders are worried about the effect of a casino-wide smoking ban on businesses.

The Senate health committee has already approved the proposed smoking ban bill, and NJ Governor Phil Murphy has said he will sign it, bringing it into force, should it pass the final hurdles.

EveryMatrix Gets Supplier Approval from the PGCB

EveryMatrix has secured interim Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approval. This is the content aggregator's fifth US iGaming state, as it's already approved for online casinos in Connecticut, New Jersey, West Virginia, and Michigan

Erik Nyman, President of EveryMatrix US, said, "EveryMatrix's goal has been to obtain direct partnerships with leading operators and to ensure full market access. With regulatory approval in Pennsylvania, we have obtained just that. 

"This is a great start to 2024. We will continue to roll out our games portfolio and aggregation services to fill both the content gap while also adding rich bonus and gamification features that will be completely new to the US market. 

"This will significantly boost our customers' portfolios with proven, localized revenue-generating titles and present US players with the ultimate user experience that they can only receive via EveryMatrix."

In Other News

  • FanDuel collaborates with YouTube and TikTok content creator Vegas Matt to promote US content and responsible play.
  • David Highhill (NFL's general manager for sports betting) confirms three sports betting ads (DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM) will be shown during the Super Bowl on February 11th. The number of sports betting equates to less than 5% of the total during the match.
  • Flutter Entertainment (FanDuel) debuts on New York's stock exchange.
  • Hacksaw Gaming goes live with Hard Rock Digital in New Jersey, and its titles include Chaos Crew and Om Nom.

Game of the Week

DraftKings' Rocket, RTP:97%

This week, we're talking about an exclusive in-house game title that's reaching new heights of popularity with US players: DraftKings' Rocket. Rocket is a simple crash game, which means all you've got to do to win is set a bet and cash out before it blows - easy peasy.

It's a unique live title that tests your risk perception and offers max prizes of up to 1,000x your bet, which is an impressive one million dollars. The higher the rocket climbs, the higher the multiplier payout gets, but if you hang in too long, you'll lose the round when the rocket explodes.

Rocket is a live game, so you can only join during the betting period, which is around 30 seconds (if you're too late, don't worry; just wait for the next round to start). You can set either manual or automatic bets, and the same applies to cashouts. The advantage of using the auto cashout or bet features is that you don't need to be too hot on your timing; sit back and watch the action.

draftkings rocket gameplay

When the bet countdown reaches zero, the rocket launches, steadily rising as the game continues. If you cash out before the crash, you get the bet multiplier shown at the time. Fly too long, and you'll sacrifice your astronaut.

You're not playing alone; other gamers are betting on the same flight, which adds the perfect community element, and you can see details of their bets and when they cash out at the top left of the game screen. Moreover, if you want to up the ante, you can play the DraftKings progressive jackpot side bet and take the chance to win even more!

As an in-house title created by DK, this game can only be played at DraftKings Casinos. Still, the good news is that they're active in every casino state - New Jersey, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Connecticut - so everyone can play. Plus, new members can claim a 100% cash match welcome bonus, meaning if you're not already a DraftKings player, there are plenty of reasons to sign up.