SportsHandle and friends deliver another round-up of the week’s big developments in US sports betting.

VHS Rental Store In Georgia Accused Of Running Illegal Sports Betting

It’s well known that there’s a robust underground sports betting market in the U.S. In Georgia, authorities recently raided one such alleged operation, which is said to have operated behind a VHS rental store. Those still exist? Maybe Blockbuster could have pivoted.

The state is a ways off from sports betting legalization. Georgia was among the states not seriously contemplating legislation in 2019, the year following the U.S. Supreme Court striking down the federal ban on full-fledged sports wagering outside Nevada.

Thus, running a sports gambling operation remains illegal in the Peach State — with a video rental store, mini-mart, a laundromat as a front, or otherwise. Authorities this month raided the alleged gambling business in Gwinnett County, outside of Atlanta.

Full story here.

Massachusetts Casinos Support Stand-Alone Mobile Sports Betting

Months after a bevy of sports betting bills were filed in Massachusetts, state lawmakers finally heard from stakeholders in a two-day hearing in Boston that started Tuesday. Among the key issues that were discussed,according to WBUR, were what mobile sports betting should look like, if patrons should be allowed to bet on college sports, the state lottery, and how quickly Massachusetts should legalize.

The hearing was held by the Joint Economic Development and Emerging Technology. Nine diverse bills were on the agenda and industry witnesses were invited to testify at the closed hearing.

Full story here.

Sports Betting All But Dead In Louisiana For 2019

Louisiana will not become the next state to legalize sports betting after the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday voted not a advance a heavily amended version of SB 153. Amendments added on Tuesday would have allowed for sports betting at 2,800 video poker locations across the state and would have mandated the use of official league data.

Bill sponsor Senator Danny Martiny (R-District 10) repeatedly said throughout the process and again on Tuesday that making sports betting an expansion of gaming would kill it. The bill would have required voter approval.

“This bill started out very simply and I want to believe that the amendments were well intentioned, but if your intention is to kill the bill” then leave off the amendments, he said in his closing statement.  “This has become an expansion and that was never my intention.”

Full story here.

Play SugarHouse Officially Launches Mobile Sports Betting In Pennsylvania

It took longer than just about anyone expected, but finally, legal online/mobile sports betting has come to Pennsylvania.

Play Sugarhouse, the online brand of the SugarHouse Casino located in Philadelphia’s Fishtown neighborhood, began taking bets at about 4:10 p.m. on Tuesday, May 28 — just over a year after the Supreme Court paved the way for individual states to regulate sports betting, and some 19 months after Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed a law in October 2017 that allowed for legal sports betting pending the Supreme Court’s decision.

Full story here.

Another Reality Check Needed For NY Mobile Sports Betting Backers After Cuomo Creates Hope

It would be easy enough to start this story by writing, “New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a radio interview on Tuesday that ‘it’s possible’ that mobile sports betting is coming soon.”

After all, Cuomo did say that (just hours, by the way, before Pennsylvania’s first mobile sports betting sitelaunched). But what would be missing is context.

First, here’s the exchange between WAMC radio host Alan Chartock and the governor:

Chartock: “Will New Yorkers be able to legally bet on sports from their cell phones anytime soon?”

Cuomo: “Uh, that’s possible. It’s possible.”

The next sentence, without context, seems mildly encouraging.

Cuomo: “I think the time is short and the list is long, so I would counsel the legislative leaders: Get the priorities done, because these priorities are not easy.”

Full story here.