The state of Delaware was the first state, and has proven itself ahead of the curve when it comes to legal sports betting. Becoming one of the first states to allow betting for real money, the state has allowed its people the opportunity to take on a variety of opportunities as quickly as the federal government allowed them to.
In this guide to Delaware sports betting, find out what types of sports betting are legal in Delaware, what sports can be wagered on, and what kinds of rules are in place when wagering on sporting events in this state.
There are several sports that bettors can wager on throughout Delaware, with the most popular being the NFL. Dating back to before the full legalization of betting on sporting events, parlay bets were permitted. The NFL parlay was especially popular, with NFL betting remaining the most popular form of sports wagering in Delaware.
Outside of the NFL, bettors can also place straight bets, teaser bets or parlay wagers on professional sports leagues such as the NBA, MLB and NHL.
With Pennsylvania being close by, teams like the Philadelphia 76ers and Phillies are often popular selections in Delaware. Bettors can also take on college sports markets, with NCAA football and basketball odds being regularly available during those seasons.
Unfortunately for bettors in Delaware, the ability to utilize betting sites and mobile sports wagering technology is nonexistent in Delaware. According to Delaware state law, online gambling is not legal for sports bettors or online casino players. Instead, bettors have to go to the physical locations that the Delaware Lottery oversees in order to access a sportsbook.
While Delaware has come a long way from only offering parlay cards, Delaware online betting would be a massive boost for sports bettors throughout the state.
Mobile sports betting via an app or mobile version of the sites would allow bettors to quickly search for and find the most profitable lines, making sports betting a more profitable proposition for players. Hopefully for bettors, being able to place bets online becomes a reality in the near future.
Bettors who are looking for sports wagering options in Delaware are only able to look at the three physical locations that exist throughout the state. These locations are all racetrack locations, and are the only venues in which sports betting are legal. Here is a list of the sportsbook options that are open to those who are in Delaware.
On one hand, this does not seem like a large number of options to choose from for bettors. However, it should be remembered that Delaware is a state with a very small surface area, with three casinos going a long way toward covering their needs than three casinos would in a larger state like New York.
With that said, bettors in Delaware might not always be able to conveniently access the three sportsbooks in the state. In general, mobile sports betting is always more accessible to everyone in a state. But for now, bettors in Delaware have to use the only options that they have, which is to visit the three properties listed above to place their sports wagers.
The history of sports betting in Delaware started prior to the Supreme Court decision to overturn PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act), putting Delaware ahead of most of the United States in terms of action to bring sports wagering to the people. It actually started with the state lottery, which offered parlay card games, where bettors had to make several correct selections in order to receive a payout.
In 2009, Governor Jack Markell attempted to bring full-scale sports wagering to the state, but sports leagues sued the state and prevented it. Markell attempted to get the Supreme Court involved, but was unsuccessful, in a precursor to Murphy v. NCAA.
This led to a waiting period of nearly a decade, when the 2018 decision to overturn PASPA allowed Governor John Carney to approve Delaware as the first state outside of Nevada to allow legal sports betting. And while online sports betting and online poker are not legal yet, being the first post-PASPA state to legalize sports wagering is one accomplishment nobody will be able to take away from Delaware anytime soon.
Sportsbook betting in Delaware does come with some rules that are unique and should be paid attention to before any wagers are placed. The most notable of those rules is the fact that online sportsbook activity is not yet legal in the state. But there are some other nuances worth knowing as well.
As it pertains to the still active parlay card gaming in Delaware, the sports lottery product offers a quick pick option. Similar to a traditional lottery ticket, bettors can have the legs in their parlay wagers chosen for them to make things easier.
If a bettor is to win a bet, whether it be a straight bet, teaser or parlay, the winnings can only be cashed in by going to one of the three in-state casinos or by mailing the request to the state lottery. For those that choose to go to a casino to redeem their winnings, avoiding slots and table games with those winnings can be the surest way to maintain a profit. Until mobile sports betting is introduced in Delaware, the temptation to spend some of those winnings on other casino offerings will always be present and bettors should prepare for that.
Currently, online sports betting is not legal in Delaware. If online sports betting becomes legal, below are the varieties of the sports bettors can wager on.