Three Maryland casinos set to open for sports betting this week

Maryland’s attempts to get sports betting off the ground have hit a few snags since voters overwhelmingly approved it last year, but Friday is finally the day.

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Three casinos are set to open to in-person, or retail, sports wagering: MGM National Harbor, Live! Casino Maryland, and Horseshoe Casino in downtown Baltimore.

"I’ve been driving 45 minutes to go to DC to put bets in, so I live 10 minutes from here. No traffic. All that good stuff," Joey Dominici told FOX 5 inside Live! Casino.

While things are trending in the right direction for in-person betting, much of the money is in mobile betting. If you’ve watched television in the last year, you’ve likely seen ads for mobile sports betting apps; those aren’t ready in Maryland quite yet.

READ MORE: Maryland sports betting set to begin this week after more than a year of delays

"That regulatory process hasn’t begun yet, so after the first of the year, we’ll go through the regulations," said John Martin, director of Maryland Lottery and Gaming.

According to the West Virginia Lottery, nearly 65% of their 2021 sports betting revenue has come from mobile sports wagering.

Pennsylvania’s Gaming Control Board says mobile wagering accounted for 84% of its sports betting revenue in the fiscal year 2020.

Martin says Maryland’s sports betting law was written to set up retail locations first and then grant licenses for mobile wagering.

"It’s not a matter of priorities. We fully understand that the revenue-potential long-term is on the mobile side. It’s just how the legislation was crafted," Martin said, "It’s a gambling term, but these are the cards that were dealt us, and that’s the game we’re going to play."


Martin says regulators are working to get casinos off the ground and anticipates mobile wagering to be live in Maryland sometime between 6 and 12 months.

"We’ll get there. It’s going to take a little while, but we will get there," Martin said.