Sports betting was supposed to be rolled out in June 2021, after the voters supported sports wagering at the 2020 election. But the launch has been delayed, and it is expected that it will take a long time for online sports betting rules to be ready.
It was with a massive voter’s support, that the people of Maryland voted the sports betting measure through on November 3rd, 2020. More than two-thirds of the voters said yes to authorizing wagering at sport and other kinds of events at licensed facilities.
When the new law was signed by the state governor Larry Hogan in May 2021 the expectation was that the first Maryland bets could be made in fall 2021. But as November is reaching its end and the winter season is about to enter, no official sports bets have been made so far in Maryland.
Rules Weren’t Ready for NFL Start
The difficulty has been about implementing the state rule book for sports betting. The launch of the NFL season in September was originally set as the target date for the first sports bets in Maryland.
But when the Dallas Cowboys faced Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the 9th of September the rules were still under review by multiple Maryland authorities. Shortly after the director of the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission, John Martin, pushed the hopes, so the launch would now be for the NFL playoffs in January 2022. This was only the in-person betting, which means you would physically have to show out at an authorized bookmaker to place your bet.
Since a Supreme Court decision in 2018 allowed states to legalize sports betting, multiple states have had votes on whether to legalize sports betting to support funding public goods like education. Now you can find multiple sports betting sites available for American players and you can find an overview of the best betting sites here: https://www.denverpost.com/2021/11/17/best-betting-sites/. But remember to follow the state guidelines, as you launch into playing.
In-Person Betting Almost Ready
Slowly, but steadily, the gambling authorities announced more news about the betting launch during September, October, and November. But after the public hearing period, the sports betting stakeholders expressed their concerns about the state regulations. This has delayed the process for the launch of online sports betting, and after these comments, the expectation was now that the online part of sports betting wouldn’t be launched before 2022.
While the discussion of how the rule book should look has been going on, multiple casinos in Maryland have sent their applications for offering sports betting in Maryland. The review commission has handled these applications as they came in, so now multiple sports bookers have met the requirements to offer sports betting: https://wtop.com/maryland/2021/11/maryland-panel-still-cant-clear-way-for-first-sports-betting-licenses/
But even though it seems to be close to a launch for in-person betting, online sports betting is still waiting to be launched, and on November 16th John Martin, director of Maryland Lottery and Gaming, said that it will take a long time for online sports betting to be launched. The launch date has been pushed into an unknown date in the future, and there are doubts, that it will be ready for the fall of 2022.