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DraftKings responds to SCOTUS’ decision on gambling ban

By Stoyan Todorov eSports 16 May 2018 309 views

With the freshly overturned ban of PASPA, a law that prohibits online gambling in the United States, a number of online operators are on the go, including DraftKings, one of the most famous fantasy betting platforms in North America.

The company has been preparing for the likelihood of Nevada successfully contesting the issue before the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) for a while now, and the operator has been working on its own eSports betting platform since July 2017.

With the uplifting of the stringent ban on eSports and fantasy betting that may ensue from the Garden State’s victory in court, DraftKings is quite prepared to experiment with the segment.

Even though DraftKings CEO Jason Robins estimates that professional video games are still outstripped by the popularity of mainstream events, he sees a field for further expansion. Conversely, DraftKings’ Matt Kalish spoke to CNBC in which he touched on eSports.

Kalish acknowledged that some of the most popular titles have been gaining more traction, including League of Legends with a 59% surge in popularity based on entry rates. Kalish expects those metrics to be significantly better in 2018.

It is possible for the mainstream operator to experience a somewhat tentative influx of gamblers when it comes to eSports. Most players and fans are accustomed to loot boxes as the only form of trade and, indeed, gambling. However, regulators in Europe have begun addressing the issue.

In his interview with CNBC, Kalish elaborated:

‘We are certainly aware of how fast the sport has grown. One of the reasons we believe esports could be much bigger on DraftKings is we haven’t really penetrated to the full breadth of games.’

DraftKings still only caters to LoL. This is understandable as nearly 95% of the industry’s operators turn a loss on eSports, as reported a few months ago by The Lines, formerly known as the Esports Gambling Report.

Should it seek expansion in new grounds, DraftKings can definitely tap into a number of competitive titles, including Dota 2, Counter-Strike, Overwatch, and the unstoppable battle royale games of PUBG and Fortnite.

DraftKings used to partner with a number of powerhouses and companies that have deep roots in eSports. Should it seek to rekindle those partnerships, the platform may be in a position to bring in fresh blood. However, the challenge would be to defeat a crop of intelligent and knowledgeable punters.