The wait for more casinos is over for Louisiana sports betting fans as two more casinos received six-month temporary license approval. These additions bring the total number of licensed sportsbooks in Louisiana to seven. At last, the Golden Nugget and L’Auberge, both in Lake Charles, will start taking sports bets on Wednesday.
Ronnie Johns, Louisiana Gaming Control Board Chair, said the board will likely issue permanent licenses by mid-year 2022.
The sportsbook at L’Auberge will start accepting bets at 9 a.m. Wednesday. Regular hours will be 10 a.m. to midnight Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to midnight Saturday and Sunday.
The opening of the largest DraftKings Sportsbook in Lake Charles happens at 2 p.m. on Wednesday at the Blue Martini Bar in the Golden Nugget. You can place bets from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to midnight on the weekends. Once regulatory and licensure approvals are received, officials say that the thirty self-service kiosks will take wagers 24/7.
Both properties are currently building out permanent sports betting locations in LA, a requirement for licensing.
Louisiana’s lucky 7
Six of Louisiana’s state-licensed casinos, and one tribal casino, offer sportsbook gambling so far, and a new sportsbook has just joined the lineup.
Out of 20 casinos eligible for a LA sports betting license, 14 are currently awaiting approval by the Louisiana State Police, Gaming Enforcement Division. Once Johns signs off, the licenses are ready to issue. The remaining casinos have until Dec. 31 to apply.
Despite repeated delays and a destructive hurricane, Louisiana sportsbook gambling looks to be growing at a lively pace.
Paragon placed first
Paragon Casino Resort, operated by the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, introduced sports betting in its Draft Room Lounge on Oct. 6. Paragon and other Tribal casinos in the state are federally licensed, so they don’t fall under LA gaming control oversight and have fewer legal hurdles to jump through. New Orleans Saints legend Joe Horn kicked off the first wager at Betfred Sportsbook.
In time for Halloween fun and games, the following four casinos were authorized and began taking sports bets straightaway:
- Boomtown Casino, Harvey
- Harrah’s New Orleans
- Horseshoe Casino, Bossier City
- L’Auberge Casino, Baton Rouge
Harrah’s and Horseshoe are partners with Caesars Sportsbook, while L’Auberge and Boomtown partner with Penn National.
On Halloween morning, former Saints quarterback Bobby “Cajun Cannon” Hebert made the first sportsbook wager at Harrah’s; betting on the Saints. “It’s just great to be part of this,” said Herbert.
More LA sportsbooks are coming
Seven more casinos have submitted sportsbook applications to the state police. However, Hurricane Ida delayed the vetting process when police focus shifted to the state’s emergency response. In fact, state police Lt. Robert Fontenot said:
“All … will still have to complete mandatory training and receive sports-booking gaming equipment prior to approval.”
A genius move
Meanwhile, another sportsbook has joined the roster that includes BetFred and Caesars. The Gaming Control Board certified Genius Sports Limited for six months as a sports wagering service provider. Genius is waiting to advance from temporary to fully licensed approval.
Genius recently launched FanDuel Sportsbook in Louisiana, making the UK-based company a provider for 18 states.
While in-person sports betting in LA is taking shape, license approval for online sports betting in Lousiana is still “at least two months away,” according to Johns.