DraftKings Sportsbook is one of the two leaders of legal online sports betting in the US. Along with FanDuel Sportsbook, DraftKings has dominated the market thus far. But the real question is when DraftKings will bring its sports betting app to PA online sports betting. We have put together a full DraftKings Sportsbook review, but in this article we are going to look at when we can expect to see it in Pennsylvania.
Is DraftKings Sportsbook legal in Pennsylvania?
Yes, it is. However, a PA version of the app does not yet exist.
There are a number of hurdles for a national sportsbook like DraftKings to tackle before it enters the PA market. As is the case in New Jersey, where DraftKings Sportsbook was the first site to launch on August 6, 2018, outside brands – non-licensed casinos in the state – have to partner with a licensed operator to “skin” their app. In New Jersey, each operator can work with up to three skins. For example, but DraftKings Sportsbook and BetStars are partnered with Resorts. But in Pennsylvania, each operator can only work with one outside skin. This complicates matters because there are only 12 qualified licensees, many of whom plan to use their own brand or already have a partner.
DraftKings does not, yet, have a casino partner in Pennsylvania.
Does the partnership with Caesars gain the entry into the state?
When DraftKings and Caesars announced a partnership that would grant DraftKings access into several legal or soon-to-be-legal sports betting markets, it was thought that DraftKings would partner with Caesars-owned Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack to bring DraftKings Sportsbook PA to market. However, it was reported that the deal did not include a pathway into Pennsylvania for DraftKings.
When will DraftKings Sportsbook enter the PA market?
Officials tell us DraftKings plans to offer online sports betting in Pennsylvania before the start of the football season. They will need to find a partner first and have their app tested by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Look and feel of the app
Unlike in New Jersey where skins are free to take on their own branding, in PA those apps powered by third parties will have to feature the branding of the casino licensee. For example, FanDuel Sportsbook’s app with Vallery Forge Casino Resort will feature the Valley Forge branding. This further complicates matters when it comes to marketing the app to users. While DraftKings Sportsbook PA will almost certainly look and feel like DraftKings’ sports betting app, it may feature separate branding.
Who are DraftKings’ possible partners?
Thus far, there are four remaining licensees do not have skin partners or have not announce plans to brand their own app:
- Sands Casino Resort
- Hollywood Casino
- Lady Luck Casino
- The Meadows Casino
As you can see, the list is shrinking, and DraftKings will likely have to partner with one of these four casinos if it wants to offer sports betting in PA.
DraftKings Sportsbook runs a $500 first bet match offer with no promo code required in New Jersey. It’s unclear whether they’ll run the same offer in PA or if they will offer market specific promotions.
One thing that has proven to be very popular is betting on local teams– NJ sportsbooks have taken massive action on Philly and New York teams, and that effect should only be more exaggerated when DraftKings launches in Pennsylvania. This means that you can expect more local odds boosts specific to the Philly (and Pittsburgh market).
Whether each version of the DraftKings Sportsbook app will offer differ odds remains to be seen.
Types of betting
DraftKings Sportsbook figures to offer all the traditional bet types, including spread, moneyline, over-under, futures, parlays, props and teasers. But it is also expected they’ll bring their more unique betting options like live betting, cash out, pools, brackets and even casino games.
DraftKings history in PA
DraftKings has operated daily fantasy in PA almost since day one. Around 2015, some questions began to pop up as to whether daily fantasy was a game of skill or gambling. DraftKings lobbied hard in favor of a game of skill, yet some states still decided to ban it. In 2018, however, Pennsylvania officially recognized daily fantasy as being legal and imposed a 15% tax on all earnings.
After launching the first sports betting app in New Jersey, it became clear that DraftKings would eye Pennsylvania which had already passed a bill for legal sports betting and now awaits approving online sites.