West Virginia sports betting fans got some bad news recently when two casinos closed the betting windows and are no longer taking bets. The two properties, Wheeling Island and Mardi Gras, are managed by Delaware North. The move also slams the brakes on mobile wagering in the state, with the BetLucky Sportsbook also no longer taking bets.
A major setback for WV sports betting
The moves come after some significant gains have been made in the state. The live sportsbook closings put a halt to wagering at 40 percent of the state’s five casino\s, which could have a major impact on the month’s betting handle just as March Madness begins to crank up.
A company representative told Legal Sports Report last week.
“We have been informed by Miomni Gaming, our sports wagering platform provider in West Virginia, that they have encountered a contract dispute with a third-party technology supplier. This has resulted in the interruption of the Wheeling Island and Mardi Gras sports betting operations as well as the BetLucky.com mobile app from accepting new sports wagers.”
Mobile wagering has been a boon to the industry. It has made an impact in the traditional sports-betting state of Nevada, and in new jurisdictions like New Jersey.
In January alone, New Jersey books took in almost $305 million in wagers with 80 percent of that coming from mobile and online wagering.
The American Gaming Association recently noted that wagers in new sports betting states exceeded the amount of wagers placed in Nevada in January.
A new AGA report details how other legalized states have made headway with the American sports bettor. Sports betting outside Nevada accounted for 50.2 percent of all legal wagers for a total of $503.1 million. Of that total, $17.8 million came from West Virginia.
The halt in wagering puts a temporary stop to mobile wagering in the Mountain State. DraftKings is currently awaiting regulatory approval for its mobile app. Additionally, William Hill and FanDuel also operate live betting books in partnerships with other casinos.
Mums the word for WV casinos
The BetLucky app in the state is a partnership between Delaware North and Momni Gaming, which has worked with several major casinos to offer:
- Online gaming
- Online sports betting
- Horse race wagering
- Fantasy sports
Certainly, this has been a bit of a step backward for the companies and Delaware North took to Twitter in March to address the issue.
We are currently experiencing an interruption in service from our sports wagering platform provider in West Virginia. We are honoring and redeeming all resulted bets and are working to determine a time frame for restoration. We apologize for this interruption in service.
— Bet Lucky (@betlucky_app) March 9, 2019
Many users inquired about when the service would be back up and running. On March 13, the company responded to a question about any updates on the situation.
“Not at this time,” the company responded via Twitter. “We are still working round the clock on a resolution. We know this is inconvenient and sincerely apologize.”
Unfortunately, the company statement has done little to quell the angst of its customers. Delaware North assures that all resolved bets will be paid.
Remaining WV sports betting options
Despite the cancellation of live and mobile wagering, the Wheeling Island casino still had Mountain East Conference basketball tournament conference pinned to the top of its Twitter feed. It looks like bettors won’t be using the companies two sports books or mobile app at least during the initial rounds of March Madness.
Bettors will still have three live options at the following casinos:
- FanDuel Sportsbook at the Greenbrier
- Hollywood Casino
- The Mountaineer Casino
Wheeling Island and Mardi Gras plan to continue with March Madness events at the two live sportsbooks. They will have specials on food and drinks, but will not be allowing sports betting on the games.
WVSportsbooks.com reached out to Delaware North and Miomni about when fans might expect the books and BetLucky to be back accepting wagers but hasn’t yet received a response.