As the state with the largest population and most professional sports teams, California likely would have the largest sports betting market in the US. The only problem is that tribal casino, card rooms, the lottery, horse racing, and other stakeholders in California’s potential sports betting market simply can’t get on the same page.
With more and more states legitimizing sports betting, it stands to reason that the Golden State would seek to do so too, if for no other reason than the money. Eilers & Krejcik, a gambling research and consulting firm, estimated that California could add over $500 million in state revenue from a mature sports wagering market. While even $500 million is just a small portion of California’s $180 billion+ state budget, it still is half a billion more than the state would have otherwise.
California does legalize sports betting, FanDuel Sportsbook would be a good bet to try to launch in the state. Prior to telling you all about FanDuel, let’s start with a quick rundown of where we currently stand with legalizing sports betting in California and what would need to occur next if FanDuel is ever going to be able to launch its online sportsbook in the state.
How would FanDuel Sportsbook compete in California?
Given how contentious the battle for who controls sports betting in California, FanDuel is well-positioned in California to potentially approach sports betting from several angles.
If the tribal push to successfully put and pass a constitutional amendment that allows them to offer sports betting, FanDuel should have its bases covered thanks to its partnership with Boyd Gaming.
FanDuel and the Wilton Rancheira Tribe
Boyd, a casino company, announced a deal for its first-ever California property with the Wilton Rancheira Tribe near Elk Grove, CA. The casino, just south of Sacramento, broke ground in March 2021. The property is set to open in 2022, giving FanDuel and Boyd at least one opportunity to get into the Sunshine State.
FanDuel and California cardrooms
However, FanDuel and its parent company, Flutter, arguably have other options. It has been several years since the push for online poker resulted in PokerStars, then not part of Flutter, forging partnerships with several California cardrooms. Nonetheless, these existing relationships between the groups certainly couldn’t hurt if cardrooms were able to apply for sports betting licenses.
FanDuel and CA racetracks
Should horse racing facilities end up with an opportunity to offer sports betting in addition to parimutuel wagering, FanDuel has a leg up there as well. The company acquired TVG, one of the leading horse betting apps, which already works with several major CA racetracks.
FanDuel and CA professional sports teams
Finally, there is always the possibility that California follows the suit of other states and offers up licensing to the professional sports franchises themselves. If that were the case, FanDuel has more than one league to choose from where an existing partnership of the same ilk is already in effect.
In Virginia, FanDuel serves as the actual sportsbook operator under the Washington Football Team’s license to accept sports bets. It will also launch a sportsbook on behalf of the Phoenix Suns in Arizona before 2021 is over.
In other words, no matter which way the wind blows in California, FanDuel likely has its bases covered.
FanDuel sports betting and major California sports
Even though sports betting is not legal in California, the state is home to one of the largest daily fantasy sports markets in the nation. Accordingly, the DFS market leaders FanDuel and DraftKings spent quite a bit of time and effort on brand awareness in the state.
In the past, FanDuel has worked with the LA Lakers and the LA Rams, but neither of those deals are active anymore.
Instead, FanDuel has been focusing on multi-platform sponsorship deals with the leagues themselves. For example, FanDuel has official sportsbook partnership deals with all four major sports leagues. While that doesn’t equate to branding at California venues, whenever CA sports fans travel to towns where sports betting is legal, that branding will be front and center.
Ditto when California sports fans turn on televised games of their favorite teams. When watching the NBA on TNT, not only will basketball fans notice branding within the arena, they will be inundated with FanDuel mentions since the company has a deal with Turner Sports to be the official sportsbook of NBA on TNT.
What would a FanDuel Sportsbook look like in California?
FanDuel is one of the top names for both sports betting and daily fantasy sports in the US, and with good reason. Californians already can use FanDuel’s DFS product, so many of them may already be familiar with the company. If you are a FanDuel DFS user, you can use your account to open a sportsbook account should FanDuel launch in California. That way your funds will be connected between the two products
Focusing exclusively on the sportsbook, FanDuel offers betting on its website and its app, which is available for iOS and Android devices. If California were to allow retail sportsbooks, there is a decent chance FanDuel would open a brick-and-mortar location too.
FanDuel online sportsbook pros and cons
There are a lot of areas where FanDuel hits a home run, the three that stand out the most are FanDuel’s promotions, betting markets, and overall ease of use.
FanDuel has numerous promotions running all the time. What makes them even better, though, is that you receive rewards as site credit. Most online books offer free bets, which you have to use all at once, while site credit offers much more flexibility.
FanDuel Sportsbook also offers a plethora of betting markets, including same-game parlays, which it made available earlier than just about anyone else. In addition to accepting a variety of bets, FanDuel also covers all of the major sports.
And whether you’re using the FanDuel website or sportsbook app, you should experience little to no trouble when it comes to placing bets, making deposits and cashing out any winnings. If by chance you do run into any issues, FanDuel also has a solid customer service department to help straighten things out.
One downside, though, is that you do need to do to opt into FanDuel’s promotions. This means you need to go to FanDuel’s promos page, click on an individual promotion and opt-in from there. Otherwise, you receive no benefits.
Types of bets available at FanDuel online betting
FanDuel accepts pretty much every sports wager there is. You’ll find totals, spreads and moneylines, as well as being able to create parlays, teasers and round robins. In addition to all those, FanDuel also offers same-game parlays for the NBA, MLB, and NFL. Here is a brief look at common sports wagers and how they work:
To win a moneyline wager, you just have to pick the winning team. Here’s an example of what a moneyline bet looks like:
- Los Angeles Dodgers -178
- San Diego Padres +150
Los Angeles is favored (you can tell by the negative number), and, for that reason, you would need to wager $178 for a chance to win $100. Since San Diego is the underdog, a $100 wager would net you $150 if correct.
Spread betting is a way of evening the gap between two teams by introducing a handicap element.
- Los Angeles Lakers -3.5 (-110)
- Los Angeles Clippers +3.5 (-110)
Again, the negative number indicates the favored team. So for the Lakers to cover the spread, they’ll need to win by four points or more. The Clippers can lose by three points or fewer or win outright. So if the Lakers were to win 107-105, the Clippers would cover the point spread. Note that the odds for most spreads and totals bets will be around -110 on both sides.
Totals or over/unders
Place a wager on the total combined score of a game. It does not matter which team wins or how much each team scores, only the total.
- Over 61.5 (-110)
- Under 61.5 (-110)
If you choose the over, you win if the two teams combine for 62 points or more. Anything less and bets on the under will win.
Multiple wagers combined onto one betting slip. With each additional selection, your possible winnings climb, but so does the risk. If you miss on any of the individual bets, you win nothing.
We already touched on the fact that FanDuel rewards users with site credit as opposed to free bets. Now let’s take a look at some of the offers at FanDuel.
- Welcome bonus: New users get a risk-free first bet for up to $1,000. If your first bet loses, you’ll receive an equal amount of site credit up to a maximum of $1,000.
- Betting insurance offers: Usually for parlays, these will get you between $10 and $25 back if your parlay misses by only one leg. Sometimes FanDuel runs bonuses where you receive a refund no matter how many legs you miss.
- Spread the Love: These promos are more scarce because they are essentially free money. Lines increase based on how many users bet on the promo, often climbing to over +100, making winning a sure thing. Bets are capped at $50 per customer.
History of FanDuel
FanDuel launched in 2009 as a daily fantasy sports company. Since then, it has experienced a meteoric rise that saw it battle DraftKings for DFS supremacy and then for dominion over the US sports betting marketplace.
FanDuel runs online sportsbooks in 10 states, with more expected to launch soon. Additionally, FanDuel’s paid DFS contests are legal in 43 states at this time.