Written By George Myers on February 5, 2021Last Updated on October 26, 2021

One of the many things that makes Super Bowl betting unique is the sheer volume of wagering options.

The prop market has exploded in recent years, ranging from the typical player props offered each week to the more specific and out-of-the-ordinary offerings that populate Super Bowl Sunday.

The Oregon Lottery Scoreboard sports betting app is no different.

It’s more than just betting on whether the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV or vice versa. It’s all the betting intricacies therein.

From over/under totals on passing yards for each quarterback to far -less predictable and more fun prop markets, Scoreboard has you covered.

Popular Super Bowl prop starts at the coin toss

So much depends on the coin toss. And not just the choice to receive or defer.

The most classic Super Bowl prop bet, and a way for casual and serious bettors alike to get some fun and early action, the coin toss is by its very nature a 50-50 proposition.

But that doesn’t mean its history is ignored.

Since Super Bowl I, the flip has landed on tails 29 times and heads 25 times. Not a huge edge, but enough to make tails the consistent favorite for coin-flip bettors.

Tails has been even more successful in recent years, representing the winning toss in six out of the last seven Super Bowls. Take that for what it’s worth.

Scoreboard, meanwhile, is consistent on its coin toss odds:

  • Coin toss result: Heads -105, Tails -105
  • Team to win coin toss: Kansas City -105, Tampa Bay -105
  • Correct coin toss called: Yes -105, No -105

Color of Super Bowl-winning Gatorade bath will be…

Gatorade loves the free advertising it gets on Super Bowl Sunday. And now it has the betting world to thank.

Where the coin toss has become the favored way to start the day’s betting, the Gatorade shower has grown into the most popular way to end it.

Gatorade dumps have been around since the mid-1980s. The company has long been a closely watched element of the Super Bowl, especially if the game is decided early. Television cameras home in on players lugging a cooler toward an unsuspecting head coach.

That anticipation comes with some financial ramifications and handicapping fun.

With the Chiefs favored to repeat as Super Bowl champions, the batch taken by head coach Andy Reid in February 2020 has gone under the microscope.

Reid, more famously aligned with red Kool-Aid, enjoyed an orange Gatorade shower that day. So it’s no surprise that same color has emerged as the betting favorite to repeat in 2021.

Orange, poured over coaching heads five times since Super Bowl XLIV,  has carved out a place as the most likely option. Although blue (twice) and no dump (twice) are not uncommon.

That makes blue’s underdog status a bit of a surprise, especially considering its two showings happened to Tom Brady’s head coach in New England, Bill Belichick.

Here are the odds on Scoreboard:

  • Orange: +125
  • No Liquid Poured: +275
  • Red/Pink: +350
  • Clear/Water: +500
  • Yellow: +550
  • Green: +550
  • Purple: +750
  • Blue: +800

Are safeties a safe Super Bowl bet?

With Tampa Bay QB Tom Brady and Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes at the helm of each offensive possession, a safety in Super Bowl LV seems almost unthinkable.

But don’t forget: it’s happened to Brady before, along with another all-time great.

Each year, the big game attracts something from bizzarro world. And a safety, paying +800 at Scoreboard, isn’t a terrible bet.

As recently as 2012-2014, a safety was scored in three straight Super Bowls:

  • Super Bowl XLVI: Brady, then with New England, is called for intentional grounding in his own end zone
  • Super Bowl XLVII: Baltimore punter Sam Koch runs out of the back of his own team’s end zone to waste time
  • Super Bowl XLVIII: On the first play, the snap goes over the head of QB Peyton Manning and recovered by Denver in its end zone

Overall, nine safeties have occurred in Super Bowl history, nearly one every six games. Four, though, have come since 2009.

Other Super Bowl props at Scoreboard

Nothing is more fun than watching a lineman score a touchdown, whether it’s an awkward goal-line catch or a rumblin’-stumblin’-bumblin’ fumble return.

The most famous such score, of course, came courtesy of Chicago Bears DT William “Refrigerator” Perry, who barreled over Patriots linebacker Larry McGrew on a 1-yard touchdown run in Super Bowl XX. No doubt, one of the most memorable Super Bowl moments ever.

Perry’s touchdown even had a connection to the betting world.

Rumors swirled that Bears coach Mike Ditka had money on Perry to score. It was Ditka’s own comments, in fact, that created unprecedented line movement on the Perry prop, which rose to 75-1 before landing at 2-1 on game day.

Scoreboard, meanwhile, doesn’t expect a Fridge repeat, offering +1000 on an offensive or defensive lineman to score a touchdown Sunday.

Here are some other interesting props offered on the betting app:

  • Defensive or special teams score: Yes +235; No -300
  • Largest lead of the game (16.5): Over -115; Under -110
  • An onside kick to happen: Yes +220; No -270
  • Game to be tied after 0-0: Yes -130; No +100
  • Any QB to throw for 500 yards: Yes +1400; No -10000
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George Myers is a writer with extensive experience in both news and sports reporting. He has primarily covered baseball and football, along with the intersection of sports and lawmaking.

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Written By Derek Helling on January 21, 2021Last Updated on October 26, 2021

When the state of Washington authorized sports betting last year, it only did so at tribal casinos.

Less than a year later, more legislative activity could produce a much grander debut for Washington sports betting.

Two state senators have filed a bill that aims to broaden the scope of who can legally offer wagering on sporting events in the state. Perhaps more important, the bill is picking up important endorsements.

The latest on Washington sports betting

It appears Oregon is not the only state looking to tap into its sports betting potential. Like how Gov. Kate Brown introduced legislation to expand access to sports betting licenses in Oregon, Washington Sens. Curtis King and Marko Liias have done the same with SB5212.

In March 2020, Washington joined the fray of jurisdictions with some form of legal sports wagering. Under current law, however, only tribal casinos can operate sportsbooks legally.

The biggest change under the proposed bill would repeal that provision. Then, cardroom and racetrack operators could not only apply for licenses but also contract with vendors to run their sportsbooks for them.

That means, in theory, online sportsbooks popular in other states — such as BetMGM, DraftKings and FanDuel — could be available to Washingtonians at some point. There are other details that Washington bettors should know about this bill, however.

What’s in SB5212?

The bill includes several tenets widely considered friendly to bettors and the industry. Those include:

  • A competitive 10% tax rate on aggregate revenue
  • A license fee of $100,000
  • No mandate for sportsbooks to purchase official data from leagues
  • Requirements for sportsbooks to comply with responsible gambling protocols

There is one section that bettors and operators may not be as excited about. That regards impermissible events. In its current form, the bill bans all wagering on both collegiate sporting events that take place in the state and any games that involve Washington college teams.

That means sportsbooks in the state couldn’t take any bets on the Washington State Cougars or Washington Huskies. If the Pac-12 men’s basketball tournament ever takes place in Washington, the entire tourney would be off the books.

The bill lists esports events as impermissible as well. Like with all other parts of the bill, amendments to change this language are still a possibility. However, support for the current iteration is only growing.

Broad support for SB5212 already in place

King and Liias — a Republican and Democrat, respectively — represent a bipartisan effort to make this change. That could only grow as more Washington lawmakers embrace gambling expansion as a way to shore up budget deficits.

Seattle Times estimate showed that the state coffers could be up to $7 billion lighter through 2023 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While tax revenue from expanded sports betting would not replace that income, it will help.

Outside of Olympia, Maverick Gaming, which operates 19 cardrooms in Washington, has also lent its support to SB5212. In a release, CEO Eric Persson said:

“As the 2021 Legislature begins to grapple with the ongoing devastation caused by the pandemic, Maverick Gaming supports SB 5212 because it lays out a modest approach that will generate economic opportunity for our workforce, create approximately 10 new jobs at each of our 19 locations, and help spark pandemic relief efforts by contributing tens of millions of new tax dollars to local and state programs. We are humbled that the legislation already has bipartisan support and we look forward to advocating for this proposal.”

With all indicators looking good right now, there is a possibility the Washington legislature could move on this quickly. Tribal casinos in the state will probably launch their sportsbooks sometime this year. Cardrooms and racetracks could potentially join them.

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Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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Written By Derek Helling on January 13, 2021Last Updated on October 26, 2021

Since the Oregon Lottery introduced its Scoreboard online sports betting service in October 2019, the results have been underwhelming.

Gov. Kate Brown may have a solution for that, as she’s pushing for mobile wagering expansion with a new bill.

If the bill becomes law as is, it could change the landscape of legal online sports betting in Oregon greatly. In many ways, it could be a marked improvement.

There are some questions to answer about the potential future as well.

What’s in Gov. Brown’s online sports betting bill?

HB 2127 would immediately change state law in several ways.

First, it would hand regulatory duties to the Oregon Racing Commission. That wouldn’t mean Scoreboard, overseen by the Oregon Lottery, would cease operations. But it could have new competition.

The racing commission could give licenses to accept wagers on sporting events to any number of companies and set the standards for licensure. While it does not put a cap on the number of licenses, it does limit license fees to no more than $50,000 annually.

The bill also calls for a repeal of the state’s ban on betting on collegiate events. In addition, it compels future licensees to purchase official league data to set in-game wagers.

The bill doesn’t specify a tax rate for aggregate revenue. It also does not contain any language pertaining to advertising standards or ineligible persons who have tangible connections to sporting events. This bill would leave that to the commission to decide, should the measure become law.

This bill puts the Oregon Racing Commission in a position to interpret an unusual block of text. There is little precedent for commission members to draw on in this situation.

An additional fee, other than a tax on revenue?

One part of the bill is peculiar. Depending on how the commission interprets the language, it could further harm the ability of sportsbook operators in Oregon to compete with illegal wagering channels.

The section reads:

“An additional fee not to exceed 10 percent of gross sports wagering receipts shall be assessed upon each sports wagering licensee. Seventy-five percent of the additional fee assessed under this paragraph shall be paid to the General Fund in the State Treasury to the credit of the Oregon Racing Commission Account. The remaining 25 percent of the additional fee assessed under this paragraph shall be allocated by the commission to support the racing industry.”

If not for the “additional fee” phrase, this could read as a direction on how to delve out tax funds. However, those two words change everything. That phrase seems to suggest that this extra 10% fee would be levied upon revenue on top of whatever general revenue tax the commission decides to impose.

How could this language affect Oregon sports betting?

On its face, that could guarantee more revenue for the state. However, that plan could actually backfire. That could handcuff sportsbook operators by what may amount to a national-high tax rate. That could limit the ability of operators to offer competitive odds and promotions to customers.

That, in turn, could motivate some bettors in the state to continue to use illegal bookies or offshore websites. As a result, the revenue that legal books would produce, and ultimately get taxed, would be paltry.

While a single-operator system isn’t doing much for the state right now, as it actually lost $2 million over the first six months of Scoreboard’s operation, the state has to balance its interest in taxation with allowing new operators to build a customer base for themselves in the state.

Expansion, if done right, could accomplish that goal.

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Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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Written By George Myers on January 19, 2021Last Updated on October 26, 2021

Since its launch more than a year ago, legalized sports betting in Oregon has been under a microscope.

An inauspicious start with the Oregon Lottery Scoreboard betting app brought financial concern and speculation. The COVID-19 outbreak compounded concerns.

Since then, however, the state’s sports betting infrastructure has shown signs of life, lending credence to the idea that its best days lie ahead.

Oregon sports betting draws $20 million in 2020

It was at times a rocky year for Oregon’s Scoreboard app, in part due to disruptions caused by COVID-19.

But that doesn’t mean bettors stayed away.

More than 7.1 million bets were placed on Scoreboard in 2020, generating over $218.2 million in handle and $20 million in revenue. It resulted in a hold of 9.2%.

Remember, however, that the Oregon Lottery banned remote wagers on college sports. That decision has been criticized for hamstringing profits on a monopolized app that has faced controversy and questions about its profitability since launching in fall 2019.

Still, the latter months of 2020 gave reason for optimism – even if figures could have been higher with the inclusion of college sports betting on Scoreboard.

Final months of 2020 strong for Oregon sports betting

November, for instance, generated a record $4.1 million in revenue, up from the $2.7 million reported in October, which itself was a major boost over previous months.

Revenue in December dipped from November, falling to $3.05 million. Still, the state saw an uptick of nearly $2 million in handle to $26.98 million in the year’s final month.

Such figures make evident the ongoing recovery underway since Scoreboard’s uninspiring start. That said, its $23 million in revenue since October 2019 ranks near the bottom of eligible states.

Meanwhile, in the coming year, it appears possible that Oregon’s progress could include a shift from Scoreboard’s existing state-sponsored, monopolized app to the competitive marketplace seen in other states.

Strange 2020 includes wide buffet of betting

Like the rest of America, Oregon bettors gravitate toward basketball and football. However, their unique love of soccer makes it the state’s third-most-bet-on sport.

Strangely enough, table tennis – especially Russian competition whose veracity has since been questioned – became a go-to option for bettors during the first wave of COVID-19.

Table tennis generated the highest average bet amount ($51.54) of all sports in Oregon in 2020. By comparison, basketball had an average bet of $34.08, while football bettors landed at $27.79.

Here is a breakdown of each sport that received more than 400,000 bets on Scoreboard in 2020:

Sport Bets Placed Handle
Basketball 2.07 million $70.6 million
Football 1.93 million $53.8 million
Soccer 930,000 $24.8 million
Baseball 481,000 $16.9 million
Table tennis 409,000 $21.1 million

Nearly 4.7 million pre-match bets were placed last year, compared to 2.44 million live wagers. Interestingly, bettors were much more likely to place large wagers when betting live. In-game bets averaged $43.66, while pre-match average sat at $23.81.

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Written By Derek Helling on December 24, 2020Last Updated on October 26, 2021

Looking for a last-minute gift idea for some of the adults in your circle? Oregon Lottery tickets might be your answer, especially if you’ve been slothful about getting your gifts together.

This year, there’s a game bearing that exact theme.

Merry Slothmas is the latest holiday-themed game to hit the shelves in Oregon. It’s certainly not the first such game, and whether it’s the best in the holiday category is up for debate.

Details of the Oregon Lottery Merry Slothmas game

Sloths don’t have the holiday reputation of fleet-footed reindeer who help a hefty man speed around the world in a single night. There’s no debating that.

However, the Oregon Lottery says the species’ reputation for not being in a rush about anything is nonetheless appropriate for the season. The messaging is taking a breath and enjoying the season.

Tickets for the Merry Slothmas scratch-off game cost a dollar at any lottery retailer in the state. The top prize is $1,500. The odds of winning a prize sit at 1 in 4.05.

As of Tuesday, over 60% of the tickets remained unsold. Also, 11 of the game’s top prizes were still available. While the furry branding of the game could be adorable, they are still lottery tickets.

As such, it’s important to not only buy but also gift these tickets responsibly. That especially applies when buying gifts for minors. Studies show that receiving lottery tickets as gifts during adolescence and/or childhood can produce more permissive attitudes toward gambling.

That, in turn, can play into a higher likelihood of developing a compulsive gambling issue. Oregonians should be mindful of buying lottery tickets for adults with those issues as well.

That applies to residents of all jurisdictions that offer lottery games. With responsible gaming in mind, these can make great gifts. Other jurisdictions offer their own holiday games.

Four other creative holiday-themed lottery games

Where people would rank these games is a matter of opinion. In addition to Merry Slothmas, four other lottery tickets currently available in other states make the following shortlist.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

It’s a classic holiday movie, whether because of Cousin Eddie’s kidnapping or Clark Griswold’s setting a sledding world speed record. Florida Lottery players can get another “gift that keeps on giving” for $2 with this instant-win ticket.

The top prize for this game is $50,000, which would buy a lot of holiday lights.

The next game on this list picks back up on the idea of evoking a member of the animal kingdom.

Fa La La La Llama

For $2, Pennsylvania Lottery players have a chance at one of six $10,000 prizes. With a 1 in 4 chance of winning a prize, it’s a solid option for gifting this year.

In a pinch, dromedaries like llamas could suffice in place of reindeer. Tie some fake antlers to their heads and most children probably will probably enjoy their presence.

If you enjoy puns, the next game is for you.

Snow Me the Money

For any Illinois Lottery player who enjoys dad jokes, this game is probably already on their list.

With a cost of just $1 and odds of winning up to $500 sitting at 1 in 4.37, it’s more than just a name game.

However, the Illinois Lottery doesn’t have a monopoly on games that feature names with plays on words. The last game on this list is another festive example.

Frosty the Doughman

This is the most expensive game on the list, but it’s also the most lucrative.

For $5, Massachusetts Lottery players get a crack at a $1 million prize.

Every year, the people who work for lotteries rack their brains coming up with new holiday promotions. In 2021, it will be difficult for the folks at the Oregon Lottery to top Merry Slothmas.

But that’s a problem for next year.

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Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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Written By Derek Helling on December 16, 2020Last Updated on October 26, 2021

Although they took a non-traditional path, the Oregon Ducks will play in the 2020 Pac-12 championship game.

However, customers of the only legal online sportsbook in the state — Oregon Lottery Scoreboard — won’t find any college football betting markets for the game. What gives?

Well, you could say the lottery has been its own worst enemy in this regard. This is the result of the lottery’s own decision not to offer any wagering on any college sporting events.

Punting on the Pac-12 championship game

The Washington Huskies don’t have enough healthy players to play in Friday night’s conference title game. Thus, the Pac-12 selected Oregon as the representative of the North division.

Now, what could arguably be the biggest betting draw of the weekend in Oregon won’t be on the board for bettors at Scoreboard. Before the lottery took the betting app live, it decided it wouldn’t offer any betting markets for college sports.

At the time, lottery officials expressed concerns shared by others around the country. Betting on college sports, the theory went, could present a risk to athletes’ well-being and compromise the integrity of games.

So, you won’t find any markets on the College Football Playoff, Pac-12 men’s basketball, or the NCAA Division-I men’s basketball tournament. That is, unless, the lottery reverses course.

There’s nothing in the state code or constitution that strictly prohibits wagering on college sports. It was simply a decision that the lottery made on its own. In theory, the lottery could change its mind at any time.

However, it seems reluctant to do so unilaterally. The Oregon Lottery would prefer direction from the body that governs the lottery, the state legislature.

Oregon legislators sending mixed signals to the lottery

To date, there’s been no strong consensus out of Salem on this issue either way. While the last legislative session produced a bill that would have made betting on college sports explicitly illegal, it never really went anywhere.

There hasn’t been much activity on the other side either. A spokesperson for the lottery said “there doesn’t seem to be much appetite for that [explicitly authorizing college sports betting] in the legislature.”

Essentially, everyone agrees that the status quo isn’t the best situation. But no one is really taking the duck by the bill to change anything. So bettors in Oregon are left with few legal options for Oregon’s Pac-12 championship date with No. 13 USC.

The BetMGM Sportsbook at Spirit Mountain Casino in Grand Ronde does offer retail wagering on college sports. Other than that, the next closest legal option would be a trip to Las Vegas this week.

Fortunately, there are options the legislature and lottery could look to for future events. Several states have worked out compromises on this issue.

How other jurisdictions regulate college sports betting

Among places in the US where legal sportsbooks are currently operating, Oregon is the only jurisdiction to completely disallow college sports wagering wholesale. All others allow it to various degrees.

Several places treat college sports the same as any other for betting purposes. Those are Indiana, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Others have some categorical restrictions.

Iowa, for example, bars prop bets on individual athletes’ performances. So you wouldn’t be able to place a bet on how many touchdowns Ducks quarterback Tyler Shough will throw for on Friday.

Others have geographic restrictions. Illinois and Washington, D.C., ban the acceptance of wagers upon events involving college teams within their respective jurisdictions. The nation’s capital takes that a step further by also prohibiting bets on all events that happen within its boundary lines, regardless of which teams are involved.

Yes, it’s about money, but there’s more to the story

Which of these options may be right for Oregon is a matter of opinion. It’s worth noting that of the top five sports betting markets in the country in terms of average monthly handle, three of them don’t restrict wagering on college sports at all.

There’s no doubt that Scoreboard would increase its opportunities to capture bettors’ dollars if it allowed betting on college sports. However, there is another concern.

Because none of the states bordering Oregon have legal online sportsbooks, it’s probable that most bettors from the state will turn to bookies or offshore websites for the Pac-12 championship game. Thus, the lack of action on Friday’s contest could be said to be driving people to place illegal wagers.

That runs contrary to efforts to legalize sports betting. The idea is that a regulated market provides consumer protections along with tax revenue for the state.

Until state officials determine a path forward, that’s going to be the downside of their decision to punt on college sports. Perhaps the situation will be different if the Ducks reach a third consecutive conference title game in 2021.

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Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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Written By Derek Helling on June 26, 2020

Baseball players will report to camp early next month for a shortened season. Now the Oregon Lottery’s Scoreboard sportsbook has MLB futures live for Oregonians to consider.

The only legal sports betting app in OR doesn’t have a plethora of markets available on the 2020 season right now. It appears Scoreboard doesn’t have a lot of confidence in regional MLB franchises.

MLB futures live on Scoreboard right now

For the time being, there are only three options for Scoreboard customers. OR bettors can wager on which team will win the American League pennant, the National League pennant, and the 2020 World Series.

In other states like New Jersey, legal sportsbooks have myriad other futures. These include win totals for specific teams and which players will win certain awards.

There are also markets for which players will lead MLB in certain statistical categories. For example, Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story is +5,000 to lead the majors in hits at BetMGM in New Jersey.

While Oregonians don’t have access to BetMGM odds right now, they should later this year via a retail sportsbook at Spirit Mountain Casino. BetMGM also plans to launch a mobile app on the reservation, and statewide as soon as OR’s regulatory framework allows.

As the 2020 season gets closer, Scoreboard may diversify its markets to match what’s available elsewhere. For fans of the Colorado Rockies, Oakland Athletics, San Francisco Giants and Seattle Mariners, that will be welcome news.

Athletics, Giants, Mariners and Rockies odds at Scoreboard

There are two ways for Oregonians to bet on the Rockies’ fate this year. This includes Colorado winning the NL Championship Series and then the World Series.

The Rockies are +7,000 to reach the World Series for the second time in franchise history at Scoreboard right now. Only three NL teams have longer odds to play for MLB’s championship this year.

San Francisco is one of those teams. Scoreboard has the Giants +12,500 to make their first World Series appearance since 2014 right now.

Over in the AL, Oakland is part of the fourth tier of pennant contenders. The A’s sit at +1,200 to represent the AL in the 2020 World Series. Seattle is at the opposite end of the market.

Scoreboard has the Mariners at +25,000, the second-longest odds in the AL title market. Just making the playoffs this season would be a huge deal for Seattle fans, as the Mariners haven’t seen the postseason since 2001.

Of course, all teams’ main objective is a World Series title. Here’s where the four aforementioned clubs sit at Scoreboard in terms of winning it all in 2020.

Team Line
Athletics +2400
Rockies +15000
Giants +25000
Mariners +50000

OR bettors considering these wagers should note that this season will look different than any other in recent history. This not only applies to rule changes but the status of players as well.

Rule changes, player options for 2020

Significant variances in rules for the 2020 season will include all teams using the designated hitter and runners on second base to start extra innings. Additionally, pitchers will bring their own rosin bags to mounds and are prohibited from using their saliva on balls.

Perhaps the greatest possible effect on MLB futures may be the status of key players, however. MLB will allow players to opt out of the coming season if they or a member of their immediate families are considered high-risk for COVID-19.

In addition, positive tests for the virus could hold players out of games. Prominent players are already testing positive. Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon is among them.

Just as the 2020 season will be unique for fans and players, wagering on the season could be unpredictable. That could mean great opportunities for OR bettors who get some lucky bounces.

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Written By Derek Helling on June 19, 2020

The Oregon Lottery’s Scoreboard is the only option for legal online sports betting in the state. However, that will change soon, thanks to BetMGM Sportsbook.

On Thursday, the parent companies of BetMGM and Spirit Mountain Casino announced a partnership. The result could be another sports betting app taking wagers in Oregon.

Details on BetMGM at Spirit Mountain Casino

BetMGM is the exclusive sports betting partner of the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon, which owns and operates Spirit Mountain Casino in Grand Ronde.

“This joint venture between two of the gaming industry’s most recognizable brands will bring a world-class sports betting offering to Oregon,” said Stan Dillon, the general manager of Spirit Mountain Casino. “We’re excited to launch this partnership with BetMGM, which will allow us to extend our established position as the Northwest’s premier entertainment destination.”

According to the press release, a BetMGM-themed retail sportsbook will open at the casino later this year. The partnership isn’t limited to just land-based wagering, however.

The two companies also plan to launch an on-reservation mobile app using geofencing technology. The ultimate result of this deal, however, will be an online sportsbook available statewide.

In order to make that a reality, however, the Grand Ronde tribe will need to negotiate a gaming compact. It’s uncertain how quickly that will happen.

When that happens, it will be a monumental step forward for the OR sports betting market. The current monopoly enjoyed by Scoreboard detracts from bettors’ experiences.

When sportsbooks compete, it’s better for bettors

When there are multiple sports betting apps in a state, bettors enjoy four primary benefits.

The first of those is a broader selection of wagering markets.

Unfortunately, an Oregon law will preclude BetMGM from accepting bets on college sports. BetMGM’s wide array of markets otherwise will be a great option for Oregonians. At the same time, it will push Scoreboard to diversify its offerings.

A second benefit is competitive odds.

When there’s a single operator in a state, there’s little motivation for that operator to “price” its lines competitively. BetMGM would change that situation as soon as it launches statewide.

A third benefit is more aggressive marketing.

Sportsbooks fight for a share of a market through their advertising and promotions. This will lead to better odds boosts and other kinds of bonuses for bettors.

Finally, another benefit is pressure to innovate. For sportsbook operators, this includes new features in the apps and on their websites.

Later this year, Oregonians will have access to BetMGM’s land-based lines. The full benefit to the OR sports betting market will be realized when the app launches statewide.

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Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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Written By Kate Rowland on June 11, 2020

Russian table tennis attracted total wagers of $3.75 million in May, accounting for 51.5% of the Scoreboard $7.29 million overall handle.

Oregon Lottery’s online sportsbook accepted 76,822 Scoreboard table tennis wagers from 1,789 different players last month.

The average table tennis bet was $48.85.

The wagering trend toward Scoreboard table tennis wagers began in mid-April, as indicated by a tweet from the Oregon Lottery on April 25:

Rounding out the top eight sporting events with the highest handles in May are the following:

  • MMA: $1.03 million
  • Soccer: $977,485
  • Baseball: $529,331
  • Golf: $262,809
  • Tennis: $309,881
  • Motor racing: $168,876
  • Darts: $229,428

Bettors placed more than 223,300 wagers on 18 different sports last month. Handball, ice hockey, boxing, cricket, Australian football and rugby (union) picked up fewer than 50 bets apiece.

With professional sports leagues out of action since early March because of COVID-19 constraints, bettors have been hard-pressed for wagering options.

Thankfully, that situation has improved in recent weeks.

NASCAR, UFC, and PGA golf tournaments are already back in action. A number of other professional leagues have announced plans to resume in the near future. For example, Major League Soccer is set to hold a 26-team tournament in Orlando, Florida, beginning July 8.

Scoreboard wagers by the numbers

Despite its many difficulties, the state’s sole digital sportsbook continues to see players register for new Scoreboard accounts every month.

Nearly 570 new players registered for accounts in May. The sportsbook’s gross profit for the month was nearly $600,000.

In total, more than 7,750 individual bettors placed over 223,300 wagers, with an average bet of $32.64.

The operator’s overall profit margin was 8.20% for the month.

Sporting events with the lowest holds were table tennis (5.36%), baseball (5.83%), and soccer (6.60%).

Of the top five sports with the month’s highest handles, the most hold for Oregon Lottery resulted from wagers on MMA and golf. The two sports had 19.31% and 17.05% margins, respectively.

Traditionally, pre-match bets and live betting action split the overall handle fairly evenly.

However, 7,280 unique bettors placed 141,154 pre-match wagers, with an average bet of $21.77. Meanwhile, 3,692 players placed 82,171 live bets with an average wager of $51.32.

Scoreboard still reeling after rocky start

Oregon Lottery’s Scoreboard has had to overcome a number of well-documented difficulties on top of the coronavirus crisis since its launch in October 2019.

The sportsbook lost $1.57 million in its first six months of operation, despite accruing net revenue of more than $6.9 million.

Oregon Lottery’s platform provider, SBTech, has been criticized for excessive service fees.

The full terms of the contract were only released after a long court battle with members of the media.

The office of the Oregon attorney general eventually ordered SBTech to release the contract to the public in its entirety.

At the end of March, SBTech was next targeted by a sophisticated cyberattack.

The platform provider was forced to shut down Scoreboard, as well as more than 50 additional gaming sites around the globe. A number of SBTech’s US partners had to remain offline for three weeks.

Kate Rowland Avatar
Written by

Kate Rowland

Kate is an award-winning journalist who has written articles for websites and newspapers across the country. A former Las Vegas resident, she has written sports betting articles for sports handicappers and sports betting websites for more than a decade.

View all posts by Kate Rowland

Written By Kate Rowland on June 8, 2020

Oregon Lottery commissioners heard a pitch to allow Scoreboard, Oregon Lottery’s online sports betting app, to accept wagers on virtual sporting events.

The temporary rule would add language to the current Scoreboard rule to define virtual sports, detail how to determine winners, and ensure fairness.

“Offering virtual sporting events is an opportunity to keep players engaged and entertained, and help raise revenue for public programs,” stated a memo to commissioners. “This requires some modest amendments to our Scoreboard rules.”

A number of other states have considered adopting virtual sports wagering laws since COVID-19 containment measures shut down professional sports leagues in early March.

So far, only New Jersey has followed through.

Virtual sports a growing industry in the US

The lottery is accepting public comment on virtual sports until June 10.

Digital virtual sports programs use state-of-the-art motion graphics, sound, and play-by-play to simulate real-life sporting events. Some of the products even feature action between former real-life athletes and/or teams.

Probabilities are assigned to each virtual player and team, often based on actual historical data. A computerized random number generator (RNG) determines the result of the virtual event.

For instance, virtual sports pioneer Inspired Entertainment worked with Churchill Downs to create a virtual Kentucky Derby at-home party that was televised nationally on NBC in early May.

The race featured 13 former Triple Crown winners from the past 100 years. Software looked at historical data for each horse, as well as win/loss records to determine the probability of potential finishing positions.

Probability factors contributed to the end result, which an RNG determined in order to ensure fairness.

NASCAR also has developed a virtual NASCAR auto racing product, the iRacing Pro Invitational Series.

DraftKings partners with Inspired Entertainment

Oregon Lottery originally awarded the Scoreboard contract to technology provider SBTech.

Sports betting behemoth DraftKings acquired SBTech in a complicated IPO merger last month.

DraftKings also partnered with Inspired Entertainment in mid-April.

Inspired supplies end-to-end virtual sports betting products to regulated gaming, lottery and sportsbook operators in 35 markets around the globe.

Currently, the company creates 14 types of simulated sporting events, including football, basketball, soccer, horse racing and auto racing.

Through a partnership with the NFL Alumni organization (NFLA), Inspired’s NFLA Legends Football is able to field nearly a dozen teams of legendary NFL players in head-to-head action.

Additionally, Inspired’s virtual basketball games feature state-of-the-art motion capture technology.

Scoreboard sets specific rules for how virtuals work

The draft version of Oregon Lottery’s new temporary Scoreboard rules includes the following definition:

“A virtual sporting event means a computer simulation of a real-world sporting event that:

  • Uses motion graphics, sounds, and play-by-play to simulate the overall experience of a real-world sporting event;
  • Assigns random probabilities to each participant in the virtual sporting event;
  • Uses a pseudo random number generator to determine winners;
  • Has been tested and certified by a reputable certification authority.”

The lottery changed wording about placing bets to read:

“Except for bets on virtual sporting events, bets may only be placed on sporting events associated with a recognized governing body. For virtual sporting events, bets may only be placed on games that have been tested and certified by a reputable certification authority.”

The section describing the method for validating bets and determining winners now reads:

“For bets on virtual sporting events only, the official event results are determined by a pseudo random number generator. The pseudo random number generator is hosted on an independent server and the virtual sporting event has been tested and certified by a reputable certification authority.”

If approved, the lottery may ask the commission to permanently adopt the new rules. That is, if virtual sports prove to be popular with Scoreboard players.

The Lottery Commission meets next on June 26.

Kate Rowland Avatar
Written by

Kate Rowland

Kate is an award-winning journalist who has written articles for websites and newspapers across the country. A former Las Vegas resident, she has written sports betting articles for sports handicappers and sports betting websites for more than a decade.

View all posts by Kate Rowland