Mississippi’s sports betting industry reported modest figures in May.
The latest figures from the Mississippi Gaming Commission have revealed that Mississippi’s sportsbooks generated $87,697 in revenue in May as the state’s casinos began to reopen from 21 May.
In the final nine days of the month, bettors in the state wagered $236,503 on sporting events.
These figures represent a significant year-on-year decline on the $1.2m that was generated in May 2019. However, these figures were an improvement on the previous month, where no sports bets were taken as casinos in the state were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
About 18 casinos reopened on 21 May after the state eased its lockdown restrictions.
Several venues, including Twin River Worldwide Holdings’ Hard Rock Biloxi Casino in the state of Mississippi, reopened on 21 May.
Penn National Gaming reopened five casino venues in the state which included Ameristar Casino Hotel Vicksburg, 1st Jackpot Casino Tunica, Boomtown Casino Biloxi, Hollywood Casino Tunica and Hollywood Casino Gulf Coast.
Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) reopened both of its Mississippi venues, Harlow’s Casino Resort & Spa and Riverwalk Casino Hotel. MGM also reopened several of its Mississippi casinos towards the end of May.
Breaking down the figures
The MGC places Mississippi’s casino sportsbooks into three different categories based on their location – coastal, central, and northern.
Mississippi’s coastal casinos led the market after generating $30,398 in revenue from $145,299 in sports bets. In the coastal region, bettors wagered $134,541 on other events as none of the major US leagues have resumed. As Korean baseball resumed in May, bettors wagered $10,108 on baseball and just $650 was bet on football.
Northern casinos came in second place where bettors wagered $68,066 on other sports outside of the US leagues, leaving the casinos with $36,688 in revenue.
Central casinos came in third place with a handle of $23,138 and $20,071 on revenue. Bettors wagered $17,935 on other non-US sports at Northern sportsbooks. Sportsbooks took $5,186 in baseball bets and $17 in football bets.
Sports betting in Mississippi
Mississippi was one of the few states to legalize sports betting in 2018. In 2017, the state repealed a section of its law that prohibited sports betting and began work on forging sports betting regulations. Once the Supreme Court repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018, Mississippi went on to launch sports betting operations in August 2018.
Currently, sports betting in Mississippi is restricted to land-based sportsbooks at licensed casinos, However, Mississippi Representative Cedric Burnett has revived HB 172, a bill that would authorise mobile sports betting in the state of Mississippi.
At the time of writing, mobile sports betting apps can only be used on licensed casino property. The proposed legislation would permit state-wide sports betting via approved platforms.