Why it’s time for Canada to evolve its sports betting laws

Since the overturning of PASPA the American sports betting market has grown exponentially, however the question remains of where does this leave the Canadian sports betting sector.

We caught up with Harley Redlick who detailed why the growth of the Canadian gaming sector is crucial.

SBCAmericas: Could you tell us about your relationship with the Canadian sports betting sector?

Harley Redlick: I am an Adjunct Professor of Gambling Law at Canada’s oldest & largest law school and lecture on sports-betting. I am also one of the largest successful players b

Harley Redlick

etting against one of Canada’s sports lotteries. Recently I teamed up with MT Play, an affiliate of a huge Canadian law firm, to provide consulting services in the Sports & Lottery space.

SBCAmericas: How important is it that Canadian sports betting evolves in order to ensure it doesn’t become engulfed by the US?

HR: Canadian casinos are largely situated on the border with the USA and legalized sports-betting will cause flocks of Canadians to spend their weekends, time, and money in the USA betting and watching football and eating, shopping, and gambling in the USA. That all adds up to problems for the Canadian economy.

SBCAmericas: What do you anticipate needs to happen in order for Canadian sports betting to evolve?

HR: Currently the Canadian criminal code bans single sport betting (due to an antiquated fear of match fixing). Twice in the last decade the government came close to ending the ban but didn’t.   

It is expected amongst many industry experts that the government will change the rules within a year. Once that occurs, each province (like US states) will be allowed to conduct & manage sports as they see fit, largely paving the way for mobile and b&m sports books across the country.

SBCAmericas: Could you tell us more about how the patterns of players will be different from Canada to the US and Europe?

HR: There’s more NHL betting in Canada due to our love of hockey. We are very multicultural so there are pockets that bet cricket and rugby. European soccer is also more popular here than in the USA. While college sports is less popular, there’s still some interest and the Jays/Raptors ensure betting on MLB/NBA. The NFL is still king even in Canada.

SBCAmericas: You will be speaking at Betting on Sports America, could you tell us what you hope to gain from the event?

HR: Better insight into how states are doing implementing sports-betting. Fan Duel and Draft Kings have been aggressive and each had a major faux pa. Every expert said nobody would pay Pennsylvania’s onerous license and many did. What’s happening with New York and Michigan, the two states that most affect Ontario.

Harley will be speaking at the much anticipated Betting on Sports America Conference, which takes place at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in New Jersey from 23-25 April and is expected to attract more than 1,500 executives from the worlds of sports betting, sports, casinos, tribes, regulators and lotteries.

To find out more and to book tickets to the event, click here