MGC regulators do not LIV for betting on new golf league

LIV Golf sign
Image: Shutterstock / L.E.MORMILE

The list of prohibited sports to bet on in Massachusetts grew yesterday as the Massachusetts Gaming Commission unanimously voted to exclude LIV golf events from the state’s wagering catalog.

Though LIV betting is offered in some states, Massachusetts commissioners were uneasy about the request from DraftKings to offer betting on events.

“For a lot of the reasons that are in the press about the financial backing of the LIV league, to me, I’d feel uncomfortable putting this in our catalog,” said Commissioner Eileen O’Brien.

Commissioner Bradford Hill agreed that he was uncomfortable with allowing LIV betting.

“I, too, am not comfortable putting this in our catalog right now with all the controversy that surrounds it,” he said.

While LIV is currently attempting to merge with the PGA, Tuesday’s vote was specifically about the current iteration of LIV. If the merger goes through and is approved, the issue would come up again for the MGC commissioners to vote on.

The commissioners have voted down several previous sports to add to the catalog. Per the request of the race organizers, the commission prohibited betting on the Boston Marathon. There are also regulations limiting betting on sports involving Russia. No leagues organized within Russia or Belarus are currently allowed to be wagered on either.

In May, the commissioners also voted to exclude slap fighting, mini golf, and pro skateboarding as well.

While the commissioners unanimously voted to leave LIV out of the catalog for now, there is a possibility for operators to bring them to the commission again in the future.

Massachusetts is setting itself apart as a regulator willing to prohibit sports for political reasons. Some other states and sportsbooks have also limited offerings on Russian sports but no other regulators have expressly said LIV cannot be in their betting catalog for political reasons.