The sports betting industry in Illinois is heating up in a hurry, and that has created some intense competition between operators. DraftKings Sportsbook is the latest operator to enter the market, and its CEO had some strong words for Rush Street Gaming.
CEO Jason Robins posted a tweet on Monday thanking Illinois Governor JB Pritzker for rolling back the in-person registration requirements provided by the state. This is the second time that Pritzker has removed these restrictions, and it should help DraftKings become a major player in Illinois.
Rush Street Gaming has been in favor of the in-person registration requirements, and Robins took a shot at that company in his tweet. He went so far as to call Rush Street Gaming corrupt idiots, setting the tone for what should build into an intense rivalry.
DraftKings was expected to have to wait at least 18 months to enter the Illinois sports betting industry, but they were able to find a way around the laws. Rush Street Gaming has yet to formally respond to DraftKings, but there will likely be a response at some point.
BetRivers Now Has Competition
Rush Street Gaming operates the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Ill., and they have also launched the BetRivers mobile app. Rivers Casino was the first retail sportsbook launched in the state, and BetRivers was the first mobile sportsbook.
BetRivers was the only mobile sportsbook that took advantage of Governor Pritzker removing the in-person registration requirements the first time around, which has given them a huge edge in the industry. Now that DraftKings will be able to have customers sign up remotely, it should create some great competition.
Both sportsbooks will be looking to step up their bonuses and promotions to build up the biggest customer base. A large percentage of sports bettors in the state are expected to sign up at both sportsbooks, and they will likely place bets with whichever sportsbook is offering the best betting lines.
Rivalry Has a Past
This intense rivalry between DraftKings and Rush Street Gaming has extended to more than five years. Rush Street Gaming has accused both DraftKings and FanDuel of running an illegal operation in Illinois by allowing residents to participate in Daily Fantasy Sports contests.
Rush Street lobbied to lawmakers, and a “penalty box” was created to keep these operators out of the sports betting industry for at least 18 months. Both DraftKings and FanDuel found ways around the penalty box, despite Rush Street once again trying to lobby lawmakers to deny issuing licenses.
FanDuel Expected to Launch Soon
FanDuel Sportsbook is expected to launch before the start of the 2020 NFL season, and that will add another popular operator to the market. FanDuel also found a way around the “penalty box” by forming a partnership with Boyd Gaming.
FanDuel will launch a retail sportsbook at the Par-A-Dice Casino in East Peoria, Illinois, and they will also offer mobile betting throughout the state. It’s unclear if they will launch in time to take advantage of the mobile registration period.