SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — It's an exciting day for Massachusetts with the first day of legalized sports betting, as the Bay state's first legal sports bet was made at exactly 10 a.m. Tuesday.
The pot is now sweeter for sports fans, just in time for next weekend's big game.
"It feels amazing, this is something we’ve been working towards for years," said President and CEO of MGM Springfield, Chris Kelley.
With sports betting legal right over the border in Massachusetts, it's a chance for players in the Northern part of Connecticut to place their bets a little closer to home.
Now players can add MGM Springfield, which is only a few miles from Connecticut, Encore Boston Harbor and Plainridge Park casino to their list of places they can check out.
In-person sports betting at Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods and online betting on different apps have all been legal in Connecticut since 2021.
It brings millions of dollars in tax revenue to the state.
Across the border at MGM Springfield, they're ready to get in on the action.
Springfield city officials are excited for the business they’ll welcome from around the region.
"The spin off effects are going to be very, very good for the City of Springfield," said Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno.
There's around 70 movie theater style chairs and a 45 foot viewing wall in the new sports lounge at MGM Springfield.
Kelley said sports betting has been a long time coming and he's glad Massachusetts is now on an even playing field with their neighboring states.
"It's a challenge when six miles away it was a competitive situation they could offer something we couldn’t," said Kelley.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission voted not only to allow betting on professional sports leagues and college teams but also eating contests and award shows like the Academy Awards.
A chance for sports fans to play their cards right across state lines and for many, it's just a few minutes away.
"We’re only six miles away from the border here it’s just a short drive from the border up [interstate] 91 and we hope we see our Connecticut friends come up and give it a try," said Kelley.
In-person sports betting is ready to go but online betting is still a little ways away.
Massachusetts is launching that sometime in March.
Lindsey Kane is a reporter at FOX61 News. She can be reached at Lkane@fox61.com. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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