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Tennessee OKs 2 more operators for online-only sportsbooks

January 29, 2021 GMT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee panel approved licenses Friday for two more sportsbook operators under the state’s online-only sports betting law.

William Hill and Wynn Sports drew approval from the Tennessee Lottery’s Sports Wagering Committee.

Lottery CEO Rebecca Hargrove said those companies and a third, Churchill Downs, have indicated they won’t launch in Tennessee in time for the Super Bowl on Feb. 7. One operator’s server was near where a bomb detonated in downtown Nashville on Christmas, Hargrove said.

FanDuel, BetMGM, DraftKings and Tennessee Action 24/7 are up and running in Tennessee. Churchill Downs, operating a sportsbook named BetAmerica that is rebranding as TwinSpires, received previous approval but isn’t running yet in Tennessee.

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Tennessee’s online-only sports betting has seen $312.3 million in gross wagers in its first two months of November and December, yielding $5.4 million in privilege taxes.

Sports betting narrowly passed in spring 2019. Republican Gov. Bill Lee let it become law without signing it due to his opposition to more gambling in a state without casinos. After the law took effect that summer, the lottery was tasked with coming up with rules and vetting operators and others looking to get into Tennessee’s industry. Now the lottery regulates how sports betting is carried out.