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

MGM’s New Shareholder Thinking Online Gaming, Sports Betting

A 12% purchase — for $1 billion — in an iconic brand such as MGM Resorts doesn’t automatically raise so many eyebrows.

But on Monday, billionaire Barry Diller’s IAC not only made that investment – Diller had an intriguing reason why.

“We are energized and excited to make this investment in MGM,” Diller said, adding his interest in “an area that currently comprises a tiny portion of its revenue — online gaming.”

In a letter to shareholders, Diller and IAC CEO Joey Levin wrote, “We believe MGM represented a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for IAC to own a meaningful piece of a pre-eminent brand in a large category with great potential to move online.. …The value was too compelling to ignore.”

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Biggest Hits: Sports Betting States With Most College Football Postponements

Two of college football’s biggest conferences took a knee on Tuesday, bowing to the power of the COVID-19 pandemic. In unprecedented moves, the Big Ten and Pac-12 announced the postponement of all fall sports, including their biggest cash cow — college football.

Tuesday’s announcements by the Big Ten and Pac-12 were historic — the college football season has been canceled only twice in history, in 1918 during World War I and in 1943 at the height of World War II.

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Virginia Lottery Rolls Out Proposed Phase 2 Sports Betting Regulations

The Virginia Lottery on Monday released its second set of proposed sports betting regulations, which include sections on operations, internal controls, and enforcement. The Lottery previously rolled out Phase 1 proposed regulations on July 15 dealing with consumer protections, self-exclusion and applications, among others. Seventeen new proposed rules were added Monday, and the definitions section of Phase 1 proposed rules was updated.

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Gamblers Drop $12 Billion To U.S. Commercial Casinos In First Half Of 2020

The first half of 2020 was obviously a tough one for the commercial casino industry.

The commercial casinos nationwide won $12.03 billion from gamblers through the first half of the year, down more than 46% compared to the same period in 2019, according to data compiled by the University of Nevada Las Vegas’ Center for Gaming Research.

For some context, $12 billion is roughly the amount that Nevada casinos won across all of 2019.

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NHL Playoffs Betting: Looking For Edges In The League Where Anyone Can Win

You can press pause due to a pandemic and come back four-plus months later in two Canadian “bubble” cities with a never-before-tried round-robin/play-in format, but no matter how different the circumstances, one thing about the NHL will never change: Every underdog is live.

The 2012 Los Angeles Kings won the Stanley Cup after entering as the lowest seed in the Western Conference. In 2017, the Nashville Predators — the 16th ranked team out of 16 in the playoffs — reached the finals. Just last season, the St. Louis Blues were the worst team in the entire NHL at one point in January before rallying, claiming the Western Conference’s fifth seed, and staying hot enough to win the Cup.

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