Ontario Releases Launch Date For Revamped Government Sportsbook

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Canada has taken a big step in relaunching its sports betting industry. On August 12, 2021, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) that the new Canadian sports betting bill comes into force on August 27, 2021. On that same day, Ontario is launching PROLINE+, which is the Ontario Lottery’s new sportsbook. The new Canadian sports betting bill legalizes single-event sports betting for the first time in Canada’s history. So, bettors will have access to the most common types of sports bets, like moneylines, point spreads, and totals.

OLG is accepting early registrations for PROLINE+, and bettors can claim its $50 bonus offer. PROLINE+ profits will be reinvested into Ontario’s communities, health care, and other provincial priorities.

Why The PROLINE+ Launch Is A Critical Milestone

Before this new law came into effect, parlay bets were Canada’s only legal type of sports wagers. Canadian bettors flocked to offshore sportsbooks and illegal bookies, whose quality was questionable and whose profits were untaxable by the Canadian government. Provinces lost out on hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue that they could’ve made from legal sports betting. The provinces also couldn’t regulate sports bettors’ most popular sportsbooks. So, the PROLINE+ launch will be a big deal for Ontario sports bettors and for the Ontario government.

Where This Fits With Private Sportsbooks

PROLINE+ will have a monopoly on Ontario’s legal online sports betting industry for at least a few months. In late July, Ontario released a draft of its online sports betting regulations for feedback from industry stakeholders and private citizens. It’s a clear step toward allowing companies like DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM to operate in Ontario. However, the process of awarding licenses remains in its infancy. The Star reports that Ontario doesn’t expect to launch private sports betting markets until December.

However, a December launch for private sportsbook companies would be a major milestone for sportsbooks, Ontario, and bettors. The next NHL season begins October 12, so Canadian bettors would be able to bet on most of the NHL season with a December launch. They’ll also be able to bet on the Super Bowl, which is a popular event despite the lack of Canadian teams. Big things are coming to Canada’s sports betting and igaming industries, and Ontario is spearheading these changes.

Why Ontario Is The Province To Watch

Ontario is modeling its sports betting and igaming industries on the United State’s most competitive igaming markets. Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey all sit near Canada’s border, putting pressure on Ontario to launch a lucrative igaming industry. Michigan is the most convenient American market for Canadians to access, so Ontario is likely feeling competitive.

Ontario is also the first Canadian province to launch a revamped igaming and online sports betting industry. So, the other provinces will be modeling their regulations on what they support and oppose in Ontario’s model. Even though the other provinces have their own goals and autonomy, Ontario will set the stage for all of Canada’s igaming revolution.

About the Author

Christopher Gerlacher

Christopher Gerlacher is a senior author and contributor for Gaming Today. He's a devout Broncos fan, for better or for worse, living in the foothills of Arvada, Colorado.

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