The state of Louisiana was hoping to go live with legal sports betting at the start of September. The timing was tied to the start of the new football season. Like many other states that have worked through the process, delays are inevitable.
Going back to a Louisiana voter referendum in the 2021 November general election, the majority of the state’s 64 parishes were in favor of legal sports betting. Laws were put into place earlier this year. The regulatory process got underway to set all the proper betting rules.
Everything was moving forward until Hurricane Ida put a crimp in those launch plans at the end of August. Persevering through yet another hardship, things got back on track in September.
While delays in the licensing process have put a hold on the launch of legal online sports betting, licensed retail sportsbooks in casino venues now have the greenlight to go live when ready.
That day finally came on Oct. 6 when Paragon Casino Resorts’ retail sportsbook opened for business. Partnering with Betfred Sports as its sportsbook operator, this tribal gaming venue was the first to market.
Owned and operated by the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, Paragon received early approval to go live ahead of other commercial gaming venues in the state.
The Betfred Group was brought in to run the sportsbook in Paragon Casino’s Draft Room. This offers sports betting at traditional counters along with stand-alone betting kiosks.
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The overall gaming floor at Paragon Casino Resort offers 64,000 square feet of space. This houses 1000 Las Vegas-style slot machines as the primary casino gaming option.
Mark Stebbings is Betfred’s, Chief Operating Officer. He offered the following comments upon going live:
“Louisiana is an exciting opportunity for Betfred Sports to continue its expansion in the US after successful launches in Iowa, Colorado and Pennsylvania.”
He went on to add:
“We look forward to utilizing our 50 years of bookmaking experience with our fantastic partner, Paragon Casino Resort, to bring the best sports betting experience to bettors in the state.”
Paragon Casino general manager Marshall Sampson offered his comments as follows:
“Our relationship with Betfred Sports marks a new chapter for Paragon – which has always been a source of pride for Marksville and the people of Louisiana. With this new partnership, I hope visitors from across the region will have a chance to experience it for themselves.
Together, we are offering a first-class sports betting platform and venue that will make Paragon Casino Resort the place to bet and watch the games in Louisiana.”
This is an exciting time for the legal sports betting industry in Louisiana. As the industry expands in the coming weeks and months, the market potential is high given the strong fan base for both college and professional sports.