Arizona Sports Betting Launch Expected September 9

The Arizona Department of Gaming expects to launch sportsbooks in the state just in time for NFL season in September. It plans to finalize rules and regulations for sports betting by mid-July.

The Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG), at a virtual meeting June 18, announced that it’s aiming for a September 9 launch of sports betting in the state and plans to finalize rules by mid-July.

ADG Director Ted Vogt promoted the idea of a group launch in September so no single operator could drag out the process. More than 90 interested parties “attended” the first of two meetings. FanDuel, which has partnered with the Phoenix Suns, asked about the use of official league data and whether in-play wagering is allowed.

The public comment period ran from June 15 to June 21. Answering criticism that the comment period was too short, Vogt said there would be a second round after the rules are updated. Most attendees indicated that they favor a “single skin per licensee” approach.

If Arizona is able to launch on schedule, it will be third out of 20 states to do so in less than five months. It differs from other states in that it will allow operators to decide if they will use official league data or not.

There was also discussion of in-play wagering and whether wagers can be voided before an event commences. The ADG was also asked to consider including credit cards on the list of permitted ways to fund an account.

The law that made sports betting possible calls for a total of 20 “event wagering operators,” with 10 set aside for professional sports franchises and 10 for gaming tribes. One question up in the air is how the ADG will determine which tribes to award those licenses to.

Ten “limited event wagering operator” licenses will be made available for OTBs and racetracks, but they will need to partner with a tribe or sports franchise to offer retail sports betting.