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Florida Poised to Authorize Sports Betting and Microbetting Through Seminole Tribe

By Rich Duprey - Updated Apr 26, 2021 at 8:27AM

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The tribe would have the right to offer sports betting concessions to sportsbooks.

Sports betting could be coming to Florida if the state legislature signs off on a deal Gov. Ron DeSantis just signed with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. 

Microbetting, or wagers made on the outcomes of events that occur within a game, is also part of the deal. Analysts believe microbets could become the biggest portion of sports betting. In the U.K., an estimated 75% of all wagers made are microbets.

Poker chips and dice on computer keyboard

Image source: Getty Images.

The agreement bodes well for sportsbooks like Flutter Entertainment's (PDYPF 3.88%) FanDuel, DraftKings (DKNG -4.63%), and BetMGM, the mobile betting app of MGM Resorts (MGM -2.70%), which is the fastest growing sportsbook in the country and says it will eventually become the second biggest.

The Seminole Tribe has exclusive rights to certain kinds of gambling in the state. The agreement allows the tribe to build three more casinos and authorizes betting on various sports in card rooms, racetracks, and ja alai arenas, known as frontons. The tribe would also have the right to dole out licenses to sportsbooks to operate at the casinos.

Microbetting would also be permitted, meaning gamblers could bet on things like whether a player hits a home run during an at-bat or a quarterback throws a touchdown pass. 

However, anti-gambling groups say the state doesn't have the authority to legalize sports betting because an amendment approved by voters in 2018 only authorizes it through a citizen's initiative garnering 60% support.

Legislative leaders have signaled support for the governor's bill, meaning the entertainment initiative will likely end up in the courts before long.

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