Massachusetts Sports Betting

Sports betting could be legalized in Massachusetts as early as 2022 if the legislation is passed. After more than a year of negotiations, the Sports Betting Conference Committee agreed on legislation to legalize sports betting. This agreement was announced on August 1st, 2022, after more than a year of negotiations. This agreement, which put legal sportsbooks on the path to launching in the Bay State, was the culmination of the committee’s efforts to design legislation that would legalize sports betting in the Commonwealth as soon as possible.

Governor Charlie Baker of Massachusetts signed the measure into law, thus making it a law in the state of Massachusetts. When will the state of Massachusetts begin offering sports gambling to its citizens? No timeline has been announced. It has been reported, however, that there might be legal sports betting applications available by the end of this year or the beginning of 2023.

Legal Online Massachusetts Sports Betting

Massachusetts sports betting has recently been made legal. On August 10th, Governor Charlie Baker signed the new Massachusetts sports betting. However, with the legalization of Massachusetts sports gambling being so recent, there are not yet any Massachusetts sports betting sites, and it is not clear so far when those will become available.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will be tasked with drafting the rules and regulations that will regulate the new industry when it is finally established. Several sportsbooks, including BetMGM, Wynn, and DraftKings, are anticipated to submit license applications. When online sports betting in Massachusetts finally gets off the ground, residents may anticipate seeing as many as seven different sites offering the activity.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission currently states that there will be a minimum of five months before the launch of the first Massachusetts sports betting site occurs, although retail Massachusetts sports betting might be able to launch slightly earlier.

How to Pick a Massachusetts Sports Betting Site

Massachusetts sports betting only became legal recently. Unfortunately, this means there is no official list of recommended Massachusetts sports betting sites. However, you can expect to see several of these become available once the regulations are set.

When Massachusetts sports betting sites become available, here are features to assess:


The appropriate body must license a Massachusetts online sportsbook. Massachusetts sports betting sites that are not licensed should be avoided.

Customer Service

Another feature customers will want to assess is the customer service offered by a given Massachusetts sports betting site. For example, they may want to see whether the support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and whether the customer support team is knowledgeable and helpful.


Every Massachusetts online sportsbook should offer secure payment methods. Customers will want to verify that their personal information is encrypted and safe and that no third parties can access their account details. Likewise, any personal information that customers enter should be encrypted to ensure that it does not get into the hands of malicious hackers.

Website and Mobile Interface

Most betters use a mobile app to place their wages. As such, it is essential to ensure that the mobile app of the Massachusetts sports betting site is easy to use and intuitive to navigate. In addition, users might appreciate extra features like touch ID to improve the security and speed of the app.

Mobile Compatible

The website should always be user-friendly and provide customers with an enjoyable experience. •

Betting Odds

It’s essential to look at the odds of each sports game when customers make their sports bet. Some Massachusetts sports betting sites will likely have better price offers than others. Whether gambling on a collegiate sport game, March Madness or the Super Bowl. The better the betting odds, the more value the site can bring its customers.

History of Sports Betting in Massachusetts

The history of sports wagering in the United States is long and complicated. Historically, gambling has always had opposition in the states.

Gambling laws were first formed in Massachusetts in the year 1719. This law banned all lotteries in the state. More legal battles occurred surrounding the lottery until it was finally legalized in 1971.

After multiple spikes of gambling activity in the 1900s, most states opposed to and outlawed gambling. However, Massachusetts legalized horse race betting in 1934 after Senate Bill 0179 was passed. Suffolk Downs is a horse racing track in Massachusetts that was legalized only two months after the bill’s passing and still operates today. In 1988, the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, or IGRA, was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan. The act was designed to facilitate the relationship between tribes and states, allowing Indian gaming on reservations.

However, in Massachusetts, there currently are no tribal casinos. The only tribes in Massachusetts were federally recognized after the cut-off date of 1934. Even so, disputes have threatened the abolishment of the tribes’ reservations, precisely that of the Mashpee Wampanoag tribes. In 2022, the Mashpee Wampanoag Indian tribes’ federally protected reservation was confirmed.

In 1992, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA, came into place. The act was enacted because the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Patents, Copyrights, and Trademarks decided that the consequences of sports betting were negative. They gave states one year to carve out of the act. In the end, only four states were exempt from the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) – Nevada, Oregon, Montana, and Delaware.

In 2011, Governor Deval Patrick signed the Expanded Gaming Act into law, allowing casinos to be run legally in the Bay State. Three casinos are now available. In addition, a 2-slot parlor license was issued to Penn National Gaming in 2014. The first legal Massachusetts casino was the Plainridge Park Casino, which launched in June 2015. Plainridge Park Casino was previously a horse racing track established in 1999. It is currently a casino and a horse racing track – the only horse racing track in Massachusetts.

There was opposition to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). New Jersey, in particular, consistently fought against it and suggested that repealing the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) would be fair to the states that cannot allow sports betting under the act. In 2018, the United States Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), deeming it unconstitutional. In particular, it has been stated that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) opposed the 10th amendment, which states that every state should independently decide its laws.

Massachusetts sports betting was something residents wanted to be legalized. Some residents traveled outside of the state to bet on their favorite team. In May 2020, the CEO of Wynn, a well-known sports betting site, stated that if Massachusetts sports betting became allowed, it would contribute to a significant boost in the state’s economy. Sports betting negotiations were occurring that month, with hopes to agree.

In June, there was also a dispute regarding whether Massachusetts sports betting on college sports should be allowed. Giyse Speaker Ron Mariano expressed that he did not see the purpose of banning Massachusetts sports betting on college sports. However, Massachusetts sports betting negotiations were not finalized in time for the NBA finals, so many betters traveled outside the state to bet.

In July, the Massachusetts sports betting negotiations were approaching a tight deadline. The talks had to be completed by the end of the month. Otherwise, Massachusetts sports betting could only become legalized next year. On the 28th, Governor Charlie Baker said he wanted to sign a Massachusetts sports betting bill. Negotiations continued into the last weekend before the cut-off date. The bill was finally passed on August 1st and was signed by Governor Chris Baker ten days later, on August 10th. On August 16th, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission met with five stakeholders to further plan the launch of Massachusetts sports betting.

Massachusetts Sports Teams

Massachusetts is home to multiple professional teams. See more about a couple of them below:

Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox is a professional baseball team that competes in Major League Baseball and has won nine championships since 1903. They have played at Fenway Park since the year 1912. The team is a American League East division member club, and Alex Cora manages it.

New England Revolution

New England Revolution is a professional soccer club founded in 1996. Robert Kraft owns this club, and Brian Bilello is the club’s president. The team competes in Major League Soccer as a member of the Eastern Conference. Its stadium is the Gilette Stadium.

Massachusetts also has some minor league teams and college teams, like:

Worcester Red Sox

Worcester Red Sox is a professional minor league baseball team that started playing in the year 2021. Their president is Charles Steinberg, and their manager is Chad Tracy. It plays as a member of the East Division and is a Triple-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. They succeeded the Pawtucket Red Sox, a team that played from 1973 until 2020.

UMass Minutemen

UMass Minutemen is a college basketball team representing the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The team plays in William D. Mullins Memorial Center in Amherst, Massachusetts. Frank Martin and Derek Kellogg are the team’s head coaches. They play in NCAA Division I men’s college basketball.

Retail Sports Betting in Massachusetts

Retail Massachusetts sports betting locations are expected to emerge no later than in January 2023. For now, Massachusetts sports betting is not available yet, although Massachusetts has casinos available. The Expanded Gaming Act of 2011 was signed into law by Governor Deval Patrick. It allows casinos to run in Massachusetts. Those include:

MGM Springfield

MGM Springfield is a classy hotel with a casino. It is based near the Connecticut River. There are many dining and entertainment options available in MGM Springfield, including live shows. It also has a fitness center, a pool, and a golf simulator. MGM Springfield is available to access through public transport. The address is One MGM Way, Springfield, 01103, United States.

Encore Boston Harbor

Encore Boston Harbor is a casino with many fun activities. It is only a short down away from downtown Boston and Cambridge. Apart from gambling, Encore Boston Harbor has fitness and spa facilities, eateries, and live entertainment. It is accessible via public transport and shuttle service. It is based at 1 Broadway, Boston, 02149, United States.

Plainridge Park Casino

Plainridge Park has a Casino and a Racetrack. The casino has many entertaining features. Its racetrack has been operating since 1999 and is currently the only racetrack still running in Massachusetts. There are also refreshments, dining options, and other entertainment, like live shows. The casino and racetrack are accessible through shuttle service. The location of Plainridge Park Casino is 301 Washington St, Plainville, 02762, United States.

Tribal Casinos

No tribal casinos currently operate in the state of Massachusetts. That is despite the Indian Regulatory Act of 1988, or IGRA, which was signed into law by President Reagan. The Indian Regulatory Act of 1988 (IGRA) created regulatory systems for state-sanctioned gambling for Native Americans via Native American tribes.

However, the only Indian tribes in Massachusetts were only recognized after 1934. They are the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head and the Mashpee Wampanoag tribes. Their reservation was also under threat, specifically the reservation of the Mashpee Wampanoag tribes. However, the federal recognition of the Mashpee Wampanoag Indian tribes has been reaffirmed as of 2022.

Daily Fantasy Sports

Daily Fantasy Sports, also known as DFS, are a legal gray area. As a result, they are often not perceived as gambling but rather as skill-based sports. Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) are similar to traditional fantasy sports but last a shorter period.

Massachusetts launched the first Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) in 2016. The legislation states that the minimum age to play Daily Fantasy Sports (DSF) is 21. In addition, the maximum amount legally lost in a single month is $1000. Only betters who demonstrate that they are financially capable can remove this cap. This regulates Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) and help players game responsibly. This temporary legislation was in place until the year 2018. A permanent bill is now in place.

Every well-known Daily Fantasy Sports Betting (DFS) site is now available in the Bay State, including FanDuel, DraftKings, Yahoo Daily Fantasy, and Fantasy Draft.

Offshore Sports Betting

Offshore sports betting is discouraged as it poses many risks to betters. Some of those risks include:

Security Risks

Unregulated sportsbooks may not have secure payment processes. Their sports bet might also not have the correct protocols to protect visitors from malicious attacks. As a result, users’ identities or account details could be stolen and used for criminal purposes.

Customer Service

Unregulated offshore sportsbooks may not have any customer service system to address customer queries or concerns. Even if they have a customer service system, that does not mean they will be responsive and address customer concerns or questions.

Hidden Terms and Conditions

Gamblers might not know the valid terms and conditions of the offshore sportsbook they are playing at because they might not be displayed. This could make them vulnerable to unfair practices and result in bad outcomes.

False Marketing

Some unscrupulous operators may employ false marketing tactics to attract customers to their sites. They may use fake or misleading images and testimonials on their website to entice potential customers to sign up on their site and play at their sportsbook.

Because of these risks, it is best to stick to regulated online sportsbooks rather than gamble with an offshore sportsbook. Authorities have thoroughly vetted these sportsbooks in the gambling industry. Although there are no current available sportsbooks for Massachusetts sports betting, they are now on the horizon.

Offshore sports betting should always be authorized by either Costa Rica or Curacao, the only two authorities the United States recognizes.

Massachusetts Horse Racing & Off-Track Betting

In 1934, Senate Bill 0179 was passed, which legalized horse race betting in the Bay State. Only two months after, the first horse racing track was built, which was Suffolk Downs. Since then, two more race tracks have been built in Massachusetts: Plainridge Racecourse in 1999 and Brockton Fair in 2001.

Suffolk Downs

Suffolk Downs was established in 1935 in East Boston, only two months after the legalization of pari-mutuel horse race betting in the state of Massachusetts. It is, therefore the oldest horse racing track in Massachusetts. Some of the most well-known horses have raced in Suffolk Downs, including Seabiscuit, Cigar, and John Henry. This historic track was unfortunately closed. The last race was held on June 30th, 2019. The site still operates for off-track betting.

Brockton Fair

Brockton Fair opened in 1956 until 1972. It also briefly operated in 2001. It has unfortunately become dormant since.

Plaindrige Park Casino

Plainridge Park Casino was opened in 1999 in Plainville, Massachusetts. Currently, it is the only horse racing track in Massachusetts. It also has slot machines and gaming available. Races run from April through November.


Massachusetts sports betting has recently been legalized as of August 10th, 2022. Gov Charlie Baker signed the new Massachusetts sports betting bill into law. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is planning the rules and regulations that will be set for Massachusetts sports betting. They estimate that the first online Massachusetts sports betting site can be launched in January 2023. However, a retail Massachusetts sports betting location may be available earlier.

Massachusetts sports betting was legalized four years after abolishing the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, or PASPA. This act prohibited states from legalizing sports betting within their borders. It applied to all states except Montana, Delaware, Oregon, and Nevada. In 2018, the United States Supreme Court decided that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) was unconstitutional.

When assessing which Massachusetts sports betting site is most suitable, various factors will be considered. For example, every Massachusetts sports betting site should be licensed. It should offer adequate customer service and support to its users. It should also have security protocols and integrations in place, to ensure that users’ data and financial information are always protected. In addition, the website and mobile app should be user-friendly and up-to-date. The site should also offer competitive odds.

Gambling was allowed in Massachusetts before Massachusetts sports betting became legalized. In 2011, Governor Deval Patrick signed an act allowing casinos to open in Massachusetts. The act was called the Expanded Gaming Act. The first casino, the Plainridge Park Casino, launched in 2015. Plainridge Park Casino started as a horse racing track in 1999 and is both a casino and a horse racing track to this day. It is, in fact the only horse racing track located in Massachusetts now.

Horse race betting was legalized in 1934, and the first horse racing track opened only two months later. This was the historical site, Suffolk Downs. Unfortunately, Suffolk Downs’ last race was on June 30th, 2019. It now only operates as an off-track betting site. Another horse racing track that was briefly in operation but shut down was Brockton Fair.

There are no Indian casinos present in Massachusetts, despite the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988, or IGRA, which was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan. The only federally recognized tribes in Massachusetts became recognized after the year 1934. Their tribal recognition was also under threat, specifically the recognition of the Mashpee Wampanoag tribes. Mashpee Wampanoag Indian tribes’ federal recognition was reaffirmed in 2022.

There are several major league, minor league, and college sports teams in Massachusetts. Boston Red Sox, New England Revolution, Worcester Red Sox, and UMass Minutemen.

Daily Fantasy Sports, or DFS, are commonly seen as a legal gray area. They are technically not classified as gambling but as skill-based sports. Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) are legal in the state of Massachusetts. The first legislation for Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) was released in 2016. It set rules for playing Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS). It lasted for two years until the permanent legislation was passed.

Offshore sports betting is always discouraged, as it poses many user risks. In addition, offshore betting sites are not regulated. Some of the risks that offshore betting sites pose are security risks, bad customer service experiences, hidden terms and conditions, false marketing, and more. Therefore, offshore sports betting should always be authorized by either Costa Rica or Curacao, the only two authorities recognized by the United States.

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About Joe Kizlauskas

Joe is a seasoned iGaming copywriter and speaker who has been in the business since 2015. He's written more words on all elements of Casinos, Slots, Bingo & Sports Betting than he likes to remember, and he's contributed material to a number of well-known brands. Joe may be seen playing 5 a side, at the gym or playing games on his Playstation when he is not writing.