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Indiana lawmakers discuss minimum age of 21 to play daily fantasy sports

Indiana lawmakers discuss minimum age of 21 to play daily fantasy sports

Raising the minimum age of players from 18 to 21 was among the changes lawmakers discussed Wednesday while considering a bill to clarify the legality of daily fantasy sports in Indiana.

The House Public Policy Committee will vote on the bill, already passed by the Indiana Senate, next Wednesday. If it passes, it would move to the full House.

After more than 90 minutes of discussion by the committee, chair Tom Dermody, R-LaPorte, said “things will change” in multiple aspects of the bill.

Other potential amendments include moving the regulation of daily fantasy sports from the Horse Racing Commission to the Gaming Commission and the fees that daily fantasy sports companies would pay to a newly created fantasy sports administration and regulation fund run by the state.

House Minority Leader Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City, has suggested that the fantasy sports bill isn’t a major issue. But Dermody said at the start of discussion on Senate Bill 339 that it was an “important issue to a million or half-million Hoosiers.”

That number is an estimate of all fantasy sports players, including season-long games that are less formal and typically organized among friends.

At issue in the legislature are games where players open accounts with real money at websites operated by large companies, such as DraftKings and FanDuel. There are 50,000 to 150,000 daily fantasy sports players in Indiana, according an estimate by the Fantasy Sports Trade Association.

Rep. Ben Smaltz, R-Auburn, said daily fantasy sports “is a big thing that’s going to be around for a long time” and that lawmakers have to get it right without having to revisit the issue in a few years.

“If we put this off, we’ll still have quite a few Hoosiers playing this without consumer protections,” the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jon Ford, R-Terre Haute, told the committee.

Rep. Terri Austin, D-Anderson, expressed concern about the games infringing on the operations of Indiana’s “racinos,” including Hoosier Park in Anderson.

“I represent a horse racetrack, and I’m very protective of it,” she told representatives of the fantasy sports industry. “I would like to make sure you can’t come in, and, by Internet gaming, basically undercut what’s going on in my community.”

As numerous state legislatures and attorneys general grapple with the legality of fantasy sports, Indiana — home of the NCAA’s headquarters — became the first state to have a bill specifically prohibiting the games from using college sports. That change was made in a Senate committee.

The bill would allow Indiana’s racinos and off-track betting operations to create their own fantasy sports games or contract with an existing company.

State revenue would come from licensing fees, which the Legislative Services Agency estimates would be $175,000 to $335,000 annually.

Daily fantasy sports involves players receiving points based on how real-life athletes perform on a particular day. Players fill out their lineups by “buying” the athletes they want, all of whom carry varying fictional price tags. Players must stay within a maximum budget when making their lineups. Players can enter one-on-one matches for $1 or games with higher fees and thousands of participants competing for seven-figure prizes.

FanDuel and DraftKings became ubiquitous on sports television during the start of football season with a torrent of ads. The companies have mainstream investors, including major professional sports leagues.

In October, the Wall Street Journal reported that the FBI was investigating the unregulated industry, including allegations that DraftKings employees used inside information to profit on a competing site.

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The Least Bad Presidential Candidate for Gambling

The Least Bad Presidential Candidate for Gambling

If we want to assess which presidential candidates would be best or least bad for the gaming industry, it’s tempting to just make a laundry list of each politician’s statements and/or votes on gaming issues, check their financial backers and where they stand, and then rank it all with some kind of algorithm. Or just guess. Google the issue and you’ll find a plethora of articles on each candidate and where they stand on the gambling industry.

And the Least Bad Presidential Candidate for Gambling Is…But such one-dimensional analysis, while somewhat helpful, doesn’t go deep enough in determining who would be the best candidate for the gambling industry as a whole. For example, you could have one candidate who is, say, against a federal ban on online gambling. While that’s obviously a plus for the industry, if the same candidate wants to jack up corporate and capital gains and VAT taxes on everything that moves so he can pay to repave a bunch of roads and bridges that don’t need repaving just so he can look like he’s “doing something” and “stimulating the economy,” then that would not be good.

Or if a candidate once even owned a bunch of casinos himself and really knows the industry well and definitely would not support a federal ban, that candidate could still be really bad for the gaming industry if he, say, wants to ignite trade and tariff wars with countries he accuses of “stealing American jobs” by selling stuff to American consumers.

No matter how you look at it this election, there really are no clearly good candidates for the gambling industry. There might be least bad and worst, but that’s it. In any case, let’s take the three front-running Republicans and the two Democrats and maybe come out with an answer of who would be the least bad, comparatively.

Marco Rubio

Marco Rubio, AKA “Rubiobot” would probably be the worst of all possible choices for the gaming sector. Anyone last week who saw the exchange between this guy and Chris Christie, governor of New Jersey who helped make online gambling legal in his state, is fully aware that Rubio is a blank slate. Rubio was a literal broken record when he chanted a 20-second or so bit about Obama trying to purposely wreck the country, repeating the same thing three times almost word for word. The saddest part was that even after the second repeat when Christie called him out for repeating sound bites, he did it again, clearly flustered, not knowing what else to say.

Repeating yourself isn’t the problem though. It just illustrates a danger. The danger is, though it may only be an internet rumor, Sheldon Adelson is thought to be backing Rubio, probably because Rubio is basically Play Doh and Adelson can mold him however he wants to with a bunch of money. Adelson, of course, is vocally against any form of online gambling anywhere in the solar system, with the possible exception of Pluto, because Pluto is no longer considered a planet. Even if Rubio lowers taxes, he is probably the most likely to appease Adelson. Lower taxes won’t help if there is a ban.

Donald Trump

On the one hand, Trump knows the gaming industry, and he knows it well. But that does not mean he’d be good for the gambling sector. On the plus side, he’s made vocal statements supporting online gaming, and he doesn’t seem to want to raise taxes much. The problem with Trump, besides being totally unpredictable, is that his bellicosity would not be good for any business, let alone gaming. He is a big time protectionist, and he’s an angry one, too. He talks about building a wall, but more than a physical wall, he would erect trade barriers fitted with barbed ware around the United States and tax imports up several different wazoos. Americans would be forced to pay more for their goods and services as competition is restricted and supply goes down, and consumers will have less money to gamble with. But inefficient domestic producers of goods and services would benefit at the expense of everyone else.

When Trump loses one scapegoat, he moves to another. He used to attack OPEC a lot for jacking up oil prices. Well, so much for that fantasy scapegoat with oil at $30 a barrel and OPEC pumping at full speed. Now he’s focusing all of his wrath on China, which would be the main target of his trade war. Aside from risking actual war if he does slap high tariffs on Chinese goods, a Trump presidency could destroy any chances of a decent Macau recovery next year, for four years. When you erect trade barriers, you hurt both economies involved in trade, and a trade war with China will not help Macau at all. So while Trump may seem like a good candidate for gambling, he may practically, be very bad.

Ted Cruz

There’s not much to say about Cruz regarding the gaming industry other than that he’s pro “States’ Rights” (what about individual rights?) so he would not interfere in a state deciding if it will legalize gambling or prohibit it. In that sense he’s kind of neutral. The dangerous thing about Cruz is that he supports a VAT, a value added tax. A VAT adds a tax at every stage of production, for every business, at every level. Even if theoretically Cruz would suck up less tax money than other candidates so businesses could actually grow, he would still add another needle into the vein that would never be removed, and the next guy to come into office can jack taxes right back up again, keeping the VAT.

Bernie Sanders

Sanders voted yes on the Unlawful Internet Gambling Funding Prohibition Act of 2006. Would he support a federal ban on online gambling? Hard to say. The fact that Adelson wants the ban, that Adelson represents money in politics which Sanders is “against” even though he himself accepts plenty of money for his own campaign, implies that he would probably not support such a ban.

However, of all candidates, he would increase taxes the most, borrow the most, have the Fed inflate the most and generally spend the most of any candidate. This is assuming Trump doesn’t succeed in starting an actual war with China which would be much more expensive than any of Sanders’s plans. The good thing about Sanders is that his plans are so grandiose that he probably wouldn’t succeed at passing any of them, aside from the likelihood of the US government defaulting on its debt sometime in the next four years anyway. In that sense, old Bernie would probably not be too bad for the gambling industry, relatively speaking, provided he fails in passing most of his spending schemes.

Hillary Clinton

Hillary voted in favor of the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act, that law we all love with a sarcasm that knows no bounds. Despite this though, Mrs. Clinton may in fact be the best candidate for gambling companies just because she inspires such loathing among Republicans, and even some Democrats, that they would all be united in stopping any initiative she has at all. It would be total gridlock and few consequential bills would even get through Congress during her entire tenure. Hillary represents the status quo, or the devil you know, which is almost always better than the devil you don’t in politics.

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PokerStars withdraws heads-up cash games

PokerStars withdraws heads-up cash games

Amaya-owned PokerStars has opted to pull regular heads-up cash game tables from its service offering.

In an email distributed to customers, PokerStars confirmed from today (Friday), players will no longer have access to No Limit Hold’em, Fixed Limit Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha Heads-Up regular tables.

Such games will be replaced with Zoom pools, a format where players compete against a different opponent on each hand.

Despite the withdrawal, PokerStars did reveal that it intends to introduce a new $50/$100 option in order to cater for higher stakes customers.

Eric Hollreiser, head of corporate communications at PokerStars’ parent company Amaya, said in a statement: “These changes are part of PokerStars’ ongoing strategic plan to improve the poker ecosystem and enhance the player experience.

“We expect these changes to incentivise more players to be focused on playing poker and less focused on selecting opponents.

“Ultimately we believe this will raise the competitive bar and help increase a fun and fair playing experience for everyone.”

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The First Sign of Spring – Early Kentucky Derby Wagering

The First Sign of Spring - Early Kentucky Derby Wagering

I used to leave it up to Punxsutawney Phil, the famous Pennsylvania groundhog to predict an early Spring, but no more. Now I rely on Nevada betting outlets and the major offshore sportsbooks offering the Kentucky Derby futures to guarantee that Winter will finally end.

Yes, we can now envision the ritual First Saturday in May, when the Run for the Roses dictates who the best 3-year-old horse in America is. Well, at least for that two-week period, until they have to prove it again at the Preakness in Baltimore. The Kentucky Derby is on our radar and betting screens with the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2, for those brave enough to take a risk almost three months into the future.

Ghost Time not Post Time

We mention bravery or courage because Kentucky Derby future betting is rather unique. Unlike future wagering on football or any other team sport, it’s highly risky that the horse you’re betting on will actually make it to the starting gate, let alone win! So many things can happen in these three months and in a horse’s maturity cycle. It’s equivalent to a human aging from 18 to 22 in a much shorter time span.

The other risk is the horse’s owner electing not to start their horse at all. When they’ve invested six or seven figures and potential breeding rights worth more than purses, the dollars often outweigh the glory of the roses. KEY FACT: a bettor DOES NOT receive a sportsbook refund should their horse not start in the Derby. All wagers are based on whether they will run or not and the potential winning outcome.

Now that you’ve been properly notified, here’s a sample look at the current Futurebook odds for the 142nd Kentucky Derby courtesy of BetOnline. For comparison odds, check the menu at other top online sportsbooks including Bovada, Heritage and Diamond Sports that feature daily horse racing wagering.

Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2 Airoforce +1500 Annual Report +6000 Awesome Speed +2200 Brody’s Cause +1600 Charmed Victory +5000 Cocked and Loaded +6000 Conquest Big E +4500 Drefong +4000 Exaggerator +2200 Flexibility +3500 Gift Box +3500 Greenpointcrusader +1800 Gun Runner +3500 Matt King Coal +7500 Mo Tom +2500 Mohaymen +375 Mor Spirit +950 Nyquist +850 Riker +10000 Sail Ahoy +6500 Sunny Ridge +2500 Swipe +2000 Synchrony +5500 Toews on Ice +7500 Unbridled Outlaw +10000 Vorticity +5500 Discreetness +5000 Shagaf +2200 Awesome Banner +2500 Smokey Image +2800 Cherry Wine +2800 Battery +3500

Something’s Missing

Immediately, at first glance is not the betting choices but the non-betting choice. The Nevada sportsbooks and large exclusive U.S. online horseracing sights like Twin Spires and TVG often feature “other 3 year-olds” as a wagering option. Over the years it has proven to be a more and more popular selection. Expect it to be in the neighborhood of around 4-5 or -120 for this round. Keep in mind that Twin Spires and TVG offer a “pari-mutuel pool” to reflect the true nature of the odds with their customary take or withhold percentage included. Here it is similar to any other future pool that cannot account for even wagering action with a withholding allowance. Therefore, it is possible to receive substantially better odds on certain horses.

“All other 3-year olds” have become a popular choice because of the proven history of this initial group not often making it to the starting gate. And also to the volatile nature of what odds you could expect on May 7th. For example, Greenpointcrusader, listed here at BetOnline at +1800 (18-1) could go off at 40-1 in the Derby. Then again, with a big victory say in a key prep like the Florida Derby, might go off at 5-1. A wager here at +1800 could be a great value.

Where’s the Girls?

The next major observation is that perhaps three of the best 3-year-old horses are completely missing from the list. They happen to be fillies. Is this a coincidence or oversight? I think not.

Songbird might be one of the best female horses or perhaps THE best we’ve seen since Zenyatta. She’s destroyed her competition in all four races including a big score in the Breeder’s Cup. Jockey Mike Smith, who rode Zenyatta is her rider. The only question is whether the owners will change their minds for the Derby. Thus far they’ve said they will not run, opting for the Kentucky Oaks. If able to bet on her, I would place a wager in the future book the first moment available.

Rachel’s Valentina and Cathryn Sophia also look to be superior fillies that are perhaps being overlooked with all the attention being put on Songbird. Rachel’s Valentina has superior breeding to go the required 1 ? mile Derby distance, where it may be more of a potential question for Cathryn Sophia, who may be more of a sprinting specialist.

Keep this story in mind in 2016 as the girls may be stronger than the boys. And in the footsteps of last year’s long overdue Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, we just might have a follow-up. Should it come from the fillies, that would really make sports history.

Best Kentucky Derby Future Bets (for now)

Moyhamen is an obvious choice due to his great record, breeding (by Tapit) and thus far impressive performance including the recent Holy Bull stakes at Gulfstream. His name means “dominant”, he looks the real deal but a long way to go and maybe not worth the +375 asking price. Even as the favorite, he likely would be in the 2-1 vicinity at Churchill Downs.

Conversely, Cherry Wine is a good value at +2800 should he come up with a big effort in the upcoming Fountain of Youth Stakes on February 27th at Gulfstream. Trained by Dale Romans, the conditioner of Mohaymen, Cherry Wine is improving and has won at Churchill Downs back in November. Should Moyahmen get injured or fall back, this horse definitely gets into the field with a top trainer like Romans. And with good prep races will be much less than 28-1 odds.

Nyquist is your other potential super horse to take a shot with. He won the 3-year old male division of the Breeder’s Cup and has been on the shelf since. Undefeated, he will start this Monday, President’s Day at Santa Anita in the San Vincente Stakes. There are no questions concerning his connections. Trainer Doug O’Neill and owner Paul Reddam have already combined to win a Kentucky Derby with I’ll Have Another in 2012.

However, there will still be questions about Nyquist’s “classic distance” stamina, because the San Vincente is only at 7 furlongs. That’s probably why he listed at a relatively generous +850 (8.5-1). Should he romp, look for the odds to decrease in the next Kentucky Derby Future Pool. Therefore, if you are a believer this weekend is the best time to get your money down on Nyquist at BetOnline and the other established offshore sportsbooks offering Kentucky Derby wagering. Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2 is open at domestic outlets this weekend only!

Overall, this can be a fun way to make a good value investment for a few bucks if you’re lucky enough getting your horse into the starting gate on the first Saturday in May. Like a lottery ticket, put it into the drawer and forget about it until the real signs of Spring appear.

Glenn Greene covers the games from a betting angle every week exclusively at For weekly betting insights, inlcuding NFL previews and picks from Glenn, click here.

House stops bill aimed at boosting N. M. Lottery

House stops bill aimed at boosting N. M. Lottery

A proposal aimed at shoring up New Mexico’s struggling lottery scholarship program was halted in the House.

House stops bill aimed at boosting New Mexico LotteryThe House Ways and Means Committee voted 5-8 on a “do-pass” motion on Senate Bill 180 Tuesday, which halted the bill’s progress.

The legislation, approved by the Senate on a 29-12 vote last week, would require the New Mexico Lottery Authority to provide $41 million a year for college scholarships. It would also remove the requirement for the lottery to funnel 30% of its monthly revenue to the state college scholarship program to allow the lottery to spend more money on advertising and promotion, draw in more players and offer bigger prizes, said Senate Finance Chair John Arthur Smith, the bill’s sponsor. That, in turn, could lead to an increase in lottery revenue and more money for scholarships.

“What we’re attempting to do is maximize the bottom line to the state for lottery scholarships,” said Smith.

Some backers of the scholarship program opposed the legislation and the 30% monthly contribution that has resulted in an additional $9 million a year for scholarships.

“The $41 million floor will become a ceiling because the lottery does not have an incentive to deliver one penny more to scholarships, even if lottery sales increase,” said Fred Nathan, the executive director of Think New Mexico.

Meanwhile, several senators voiced concern about language in the bill that could lead to the state lottery offering slot machines and other types of video gambling, which could put the states’ compact with tribes at risk.

New Mexico gets a portion of the tribes’ casino and racetrack gambling revenue, totaling about $60 million in 2015.

Smith and Lottery Authority CEO David Barden said that bill would not have given the lottery any power to buy or use lottery games.

“We’re very cognizant of not violating the compact,” Barden told committee members.

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New Jersey opposes fed intervention in Feb. 17 sports betting oral argument unless

New Jersey opposes fed intervention in Feb. 17 sports betting oral argument unless

Here is the explanation for why New Jersey objects – somewhat – to the federal government joining the NFL, NCAA, and three other sports leagues in their oral argument before a dozen U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals judges in Philadelphia on Wednesday.

“Defendant-Appellants [Governor] Christopher J. Christie, [Division of Gaming Enforcement chief] David L. Rebuck, and [Racing Commission leader] Frank Zanzuccki hereby enter their qualified opposition to the United States’ motion for leave to participate at the en banc oral argument to be held in this case on February 17. Defendant-Appellants [state Senate President] Stephen M. Sweeney, [Assembly Speaker] Vincent Prieto, and the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (combined, “Appellants”) join this qualified opposition.

“Appellants object to the motion of the United States to the extent the United States intends, or otherwise wishes to reserve the right, to present arguments different from those presented in its amicus brief filed in this case.

“When the United States inquired as to Appellants’ position on the United States’ motion, the United States flatly refused to include in its motion a representation that it wishes to argue the positions stated in its amicus brief. Appellants can infer from that refusal only that the United States wishes to preserve flexibility to present arguments that range beyond those in its amicus brief. That would be inappropriate, particularly at this late date.

“Appellants have no objection to the United States advancing at oral argument the positions taken in its amicus brief on the terms set forth in the United States’ motion (i.e., taking ten minutes from Appellees’ 30 minutes). Appellants object to the extent the United States would present arguments not stated in its amicus brief. Accordingly, Appellants respectfully submit that the United States’ motion should be granted in part, viz., granted only to the extent the United States wishes to present the arguments set forth in its amicus brief in this case.”

(This was submitted by Acting Attorney General John Hoffman in his waning days on the job, and renowned lawyer Ted Olson who will speak for the state next week.)



“The United States of America should be permitted to participate in oral argument, without qualification. If permitted to participate, the United States intends to argue positions consistent with its amicus brief, but the condition that appellants seek to impose on the United States – that the United States not be permitted to address points beyond those in its amicus brief – is extraordinary and unnecessarily restrictive.

“In seeking appellants’ consent for this motion, counsel for the United States explained that the government intended to focus on positions in its amicus brief, but should be entitled to the same flexibility at oral argument that all participants enjoy.

“The United States does not want to forego or limit its ability to respond to any questions from the Court; to fully address arguments raised by other parties at the en banc hearing; or to reference positions that the United States or other parties advanced at earlier points in this litigation or in Christie I.

“Appellants’ insistence on preventing the United States from addressing matters beyond its amicus brief is unfair and prejudicial: the United States’ amicus brief was filed prior to the panel opinion, and prior to the briefing on appellants’ petition for en banc review. Like the other participants, the United States should be in a position to address the panel’s analysis, as well as the arguments advanced by the parties regarding the court’s opinion. For these reasons, the United States’ motion to participate in oral argument should be granted without qualification.”

Respectfully Submitted, BENJAMIN C. MIZER Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General

PAUL J. FISHMAN United States Attorney

SCOTT R. McINTOSH Appellate Staff, Civil Division

/s/ Peter J. Phipps PETER J. PHIPPS Senior Trial Counsel U.S. Department of Justice

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DraftKings and eSports Teams End Sponsorship Deals

DraftKings and eSports Teams End Sponsorship Deals

Daily Fantasy Sports kingpin DraftKings has ended their affiliation with six major eSports organisations according to a report published by the Daily Dot.

As I watched Match of the Day last night, I couldn’t help but notice that DraftKings had arrived in the UK with aplomb, as the flashing billboards at the Emirates and Anfield sent the name of the Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) kingpin into the minds of the masses.

Unfortunately, things aren’t going as tickety-boo in the eSports industry. According to the Daily Dot, DraftKings appears to have severed ties with the six major eSports outfits it inked deals with last September. Sports management agency WME|IMG help broker a multi-million dollar contract between DraftKings and Cloud9, Team SoloMid, Counter Logic Gaming, compLexity Gaming, mouseports and SK Gaming. All existence of DraftKings has been wiped from those particular slates.

DraftKings and eSports Teams End Sponsorship DealsThe Daily Dot could not obtain an official response from DraftKings before the publication of their piece. However, Legal Sports Report did:

“Our partnerships in the growing eSports field have been rewarding, and we value our continued relationships with these businesses. We remain committed to offering exciting eSports DFS contests through the DraftKings platform and will continue to explore opportunities accordingly.”

So that tells us nothing then.

You could argue that DraftKings had only dipped a big toe in the eSports water after their interest only went as far as League of Legends. I see this as a minor blip. As eSports grows so will the opportunity for DFS.

The Daily Dot report suggests money is the core of the issue. DraftKings have been embroiled in some much publicised legal spats in Arizona, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada, New York and Texas. All those states believe DFS is illegal, and it’s costing a pretty penny trying to prove otherwise. That same report suggests DraftKings has also cut down on its expenditure in the NFL and NBA.

The same is not true in the UK as DraftKings begin their invasion. They have launched a website dedicated to the greatest sport in the world called and are running a series of ads with former Wigan star Jimmy Bullard featuring in their #BeatTheBulldog feature, where Bullard is taught how to play DFS by an actor called Jamie.

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GVC refuses to kick on Bwin. cocktail dispense

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How to begin an on the net game plot

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