According to Sportico’s Eben Novy-Williams, DraftKings Sportsbook is making its way into the Illinois mobile sports betting market faster than most expected. DraftKings is forming a partnership with Casino Queen, an Illinois-based sportsbook, in order to sidestep the state’s “penalty box” provision in mobile sports betting legislation. The language in the legislation made it clear that Illinois-based casinos would have an 18-month head start on mobile sports betting in Illinois. At this rate, BetRivers Illinois app may be the competitor to get a clear advantage in the state.
DraftKings and Casino Queen’s partnership is a clever way to skirt around the legalese. Although it’s unclear exactly what the revenue split will be between the two companies, this deal gives DraftKings a major advantage over the competition in Illinois.
“We look forward to working with both the Illinois Gaming Board and Casino Queen to bring our legal sports betting product to Illinois,” DraftKings company said in a statement.
DraftKings and FanDuel Work Around Illinois Penalty Box
DraftKings and FanDuel weren’t happy with the “penalty box” provision and felt it was an unfair move by lawmakers to exclude two of the largest and most influential sports betting companies. Clearly, the sportsbook giants are taking matters into their own hands when it comes to finding a loophole.
Part of the reason why Illinois lawmakers imposed this 18-month “penalty box” provision was due to the fact that in 2015, the Illinois Attorney General ruled that DraftKings and FanDuel were operating daily fantasy sports illegally in-state. This was seen as an unfair advantage for DraftKings and FanDuel and thus, lawmakers tried to tilt the balance back in favor of established in-state casinos.
Obviously, DraftKings isn’t keen on the idea of waiting 18 months to enter the Illinois market and the company is willing to go to great lengths to make its presence felt. Illinois bettors should keep an eye on the rapidly evolving sports betting landscape in the state.