By Sally Fahey

Maryland sports betting heads to a fall 2021 launch after regulators advanced several hundred pages of key sportsbook regulations without opposition last week.

The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Commission’s uncontested votes clear a key regulatory threshold that will allow state officials and future sportsbook operators to continue launch preparations. No formal go-live date has been scheduled, but all parties are working to capture as much of the lucrative football season as possible.

FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, PointsBet and Barstool Sportsbook are among a dozen or more brands that have already announced market access deals or that are expected to do so. Caesars William Hill posted job listings earlier this week for a future sportsbook at the Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore, and FanDuel has already constructed a physical sportsbook in Live! Casino Hotel Maryland near Baltimore-Washington International Airport.

Maryland will license as many as 60 statewide mobile sportsbooks, though it could take years to reach that cap. Maryland’s 2021 sports betting law permits its six casinos and three professional sports venues to apply for licensure, all of which are expected to do so. Three more are set aside for the owner of Laurel Park and Pimlico horse tracks, the state fairgrounds and an off-track betting facility, respectively.

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