The snag is caused by the fact that the casino is operated by the Mohegan Tribe, who also own the Connecticut Sun team that’s a part of the WNBA, and casino officials see that as a possible conflict of interest, so they called the audible and put a stop to those types of wagers.
The Mohegan Sun’s president and general manager, Jeff Hamilton, issued a statement to the press further explaining the move and what’s next, saying, in part:
We are in the process of working with the WNBA to update our SOPs (standard operating procedures) and have decided to take WNBA wagering off until this is finalized.
The event that initially triggered the suspension happened last Thursday when retail sports betting in Connecticut officially got started.
Yesterday, we reported CT Sports Betting Launches with Gov. Lamont Making Ceremonial First Bets, detailing how Gov. Ned Lamont made his state’s first legal sports wager at Mohegan Sun by placing a $50 bet for the Connecticut Sun basketball team to beat the Chicago Sky.
Apparently, the media coverage of that wager attracted the attention of certain industry experts and state lawmakers who were already concerned about a possible conflict of interest with the Mohegan Sun accepting bets on the team they own.
According to State Rep. Maria Horn, a Democrat who co-chairs the legislative committee that oversees gambling in Connecticut, these types of hiccups were expected while turning sports betting legislation into law.
“This is a major expansion (of gambling), and I would be very surprised if we got everything right in the first bite. I expect that we will go back and take a look at whether a tweak needs to be made.”
That’s now the plan.
This potential conflict of interest will most likely be addressed during Connecticut’s next legislative session, which right now is scheduled to take place from February to May 2022.
Also during that session, discussions will take place regarding the permanent regulations that will govern the state’s three approved sportsbooks, their approval the next step in fine-tuning the sports betting operation already in progress there under temporary rules.
The WNBA made no comments regarding this issue, the league already with an agreement in place allowing third-party sportsbooks in venues where their teams play so long as they stay separate from common areas and make certain to admit only those legally able to gamble.
Once these expected wrinkles are all ironed out, Connecticut should begin reaping the financial benefits of legalizing and regulating sports betting, and with revenue projections of $450 million annually, that new money flow should begin to make a huge difference for state residents.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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