Penn’s Barstool Sportsbook Conditionally Approved in Massachusetts

Penn’s Barstool Sportsbook Conditionally Approved in Massachusetts

Barstool Sports

Like Plainridge Park Casino, Barstool Sportsbook has to accept certain limitations related to its sports betting license that has just been awarded to them.

Barstool Sportsbook is the latest sportsbook to get approval from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) for mobile sports betting operations for the forthcoming mobile market debut in March.

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Mobile Sports Betting License Received

Penn Sports Interactive (PSI)’s Barstool Sportsbook obtained conditional preliminary approval for a temporary sports betting license this week after commissioners carried the vote that was first delayed in December. 

Barstool Sportsbook will handle mobile sports betting tied to the temporary retail sports betting license of Plainridge Park Casino, one of only three land-based casinos permitted for in-person sports betting. PlainRidge Park Casino is likewise operated by Penn.

The other two casinos licensed for in-person betting are Encore Boston Harbor and MGM Springfield, and while retail sports betting is anticipated to debut on January 31, mobile wagering is scheduled to go online in March but is waiting to obtain a launch date. 

Joining the likes of WynnBET, BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbook, which already obtained a Category 3 mobile sports betting license from the MGC, was not an easy ride for Barstool Sportsbook as it had to undergo extensive scrutiny during the commission’s meeting and subsequent executive session as commissioners questioned its links to Barstool Sports.

Links to Barstool Sports and Dave Portnoy

According to Commissioner Eileen O’Brien who made the motion, “Penn Sports Interactive [doing business as] Barstool Sportsbook has shown by substantial evidence that they have satisfied the criteria set forth in general,” but several commissioners had expressed concerns related to Barstool Sports branding and founder, Dave Portnoy, during previous meetings.

According to Commissioner Brad Hill, who addressed during the December hearing on Plainrigde Park Casino’s Category 1 license application, Portnoy’s depiction of himself as a “degenerate gambler” and other comments “he has made in the past fly in the face of responsible gaming.” 

To alleviate these concerns, Penn Entertainment, which owns part of Barstool Sports, is expected to acquire its full ownership in February, and is applying for a license via PSI, had to agree to fully cooperate with the MGC’s Investigation and Enforcement Bureau (IEB) regarding the investigation into Barstool Sports in connection with branding, as well as several other conditions.

Supplying its Diversity Goals for its Workforce 

Another condition stipulated efforts to ensure people under the age of 21 do not attend any of the live Barstool College Football Shows, following the $250,000 fine slapped by the Ohio Casino Control Commission for violating the rule not to promote to people in that age category during its live show at the University of Toledo.

Other restrictions include the production of updates to IEB addressing “the Illinois subject that was discussed in the executive session,” the provision of diversity targets on its spending, and the supply of diversity goals for its workforce.

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About Lou De Aguila

Lou Aguila is a news and feature writer for Golden Casino News. For over a decade, Lou has published news and featured articles for some of the most reputable sports betting and online casino sites in the world, including BetNow.UK, VegasOdds, and BWin. Apart from being a hardcore live casino punter, he also covers sports stories in North American leagues from time to time.