Sports betting in Maryland launched last December at brick-and-mortar locations, but online betting still faces a few hurdles. There is hope that it will be up and running in the latter half of 2022.
Until online sportsbooks are up and running, daily fantasy sports is a great way to hold yourself over. Maryland DFS has been up and running since 2012 and allows users to craft teams and play in paid competitions in various sports.
Here’s a look at Maryland’s daily fantasy sports and how to play.
What is daily fantasy sports (DFS)?
Daily fantasy sports are just like season-long fantasy leagues, except they are condensed into a pressure-cooker format of one day to one week, depending on the sport. Instead of waiting for an entire season to play out to earn your winnings, you can take home the prize money nightly.
DFS allows you to use your knowledge of various sports in a competitive fashion. While it’s different in terms of building a statistically-driven team vs. betting on one game at a time, it still gives you a vested interest in the game and a sense of participation while helping you get accustomed to the app and deposit/withdrawal methods.
How to play
Participants enter a contest or play head-to-head and draft a roster of players based on a predetermined salary cap. The players will earn points based on their in-game performance and per the DFS site’s rules. At the end of the contest, the prize pool will be divvied up between the top point-earning teams.
Because of the statistical focus of fantasy sports, playing them can help new bettors make more informed decisions. Online betting and DFS require similar tactics to be successful:
- Researching matchups
- Understanding the impact of injuries
- Knowing which stats impact games
- Following trends
FanDuel already has a sports betting presence in Maryland
If you’re waiting for online gambling in Maryland, it makes sense to go ahead and sign up for an account with DFS sites such as FanDuel.
The popular DFS company boasts a physical sportsbook at the Live! Casino & Hotel in Hanover. While DraftKings, another big player in DFS, doesn’t have a retail location open yet, they’re sure to be a significant player in the market once mobile is live.
There are currently five retail locations in the state:
- FanDuel Sportsbook – Live! Casino & Hotel, Hanover
- BetMGM Sportsbook – National Harbor, Oxon Hill
- TwinSpires Sportsbook – Ocean Downs Casino, Berlin
- Caesars Sportsbook – Horseshoe Casino, Baltimore
- Barstool Sportsbook – Hollywood Casino Perryville: 1201 Chesapeake Overlook Pkwy, Perryville
Each casino’s respective operating partner is expected to launch a mobile app once online sports betting is live in Maryland. The lone exception will be Ocean Downs Casino, whose partner, TwinSpires, has discontinued its mobile sports wagering operations.
In addition to those five, Maryland’s Sports Wagering Application Review Commission has approved four other establishments for a sports wagering facility license. None of them have launched their respective physical sportsbook just yet.
- Riverboat-on-the-Potomac (PointsBet)
- Greenmount OTB
- Long Shot’s
- Bingo World (BetRivers)
Fanatics could become the 10th approved retail sports betting license in the state in the near future. The popular online retailer of licensed sportswear and merchandise was recently approved by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission. If approved by SWARC, it’ll then receive its license.
Maryland daily fantasy sports are a great way to tide fans over until online betting is finally legalized. However, while there have been some updates and positive developments in the right direction, there is still much to do before locals can place a mobile sports bet in the Old Line State.
Last week, SWARC approved proposed online sports betting regulations and applications during its monthly meeting. The group will now submit them to the Maryland Legislature’s Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive, and Legislative Review for “emergency approval.”
Once approved there, a 30-day public comment period will then begin. After the regulations have become effective and the industry analysis has been completed, SWARC can then determine a date for when formal applications and fees can be submitted.
From there, the group can then work on a potential timeline for additional actions, ending with mobile sports betting finally making its way to Maryland.
SWARC is scheduled to next meet on August 17. However, there’s always the chance it adds an emergency meeting before then.