Yesterday, Monday 21st November saw Maryland launch legal online sports betting for a trial eight-hour period – ahead of a full launch on Wednesday 23rd.
The trial period began at 2pm ET and allowed all seven of the currently approved sports betting operators to test their platforms until 10pm under the observation of Maryland Lottery and Gaming staff. The seven operators were FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, Caesars, PointsBet, Barstool Sportsbook, and BetRivers.
There were no reports of any issues throughout the trail period and it’s now expected that mobile sports betting can go ahead with a planned launch on Wednesday just ahead of Thanksgiving.
Maryland’s trial period is unusual in that it is the first time that a state has launched and then taken sports betting offline again ahead of an official launch. Ordinarily, states will allow some operators to soft launch prior to a full industry launch.
Maryland sports betting will allow for up to 60 online sportsbooks. However, the Sports Wagering Application Review Commission (SWARC) has instigated a rolling approval process meaning that once the industry launches, approved sports betting operators will be allowed to immediately accept wagers when their license is issued.
If the launch goes ahead as planned on Wednesday, Maryland will be the 21st state to allow online sports betting.