In case there were any doubts concerning the long-term profit potential of sports betting vs. daily fantasy sports (DFS), please put them to rest: Sports betting is king.
Proof can be found in Oregon, where DraftKings has abruptly put an end to paid DFS contests in its ongoing attempt to curry favor with the state and gain the sports betting monopoly.
Currently, the only way to place a sports bet online in Oregon is through the state lottery’s ScoreBoard app; DraftKings has been in negotiations with the state to take over the operation.
And in a note to Oregon DFS customers informing them that the ride is over, the company doesn’t hide behind any PR speak — it makes clear sports betting is taking precedence here.
“As you might already be aware, DraftKings has been in discussions with the Oregon Lottery to potentially transition its Scoreboard app to the DraftKings platform,” the note begins. “During these discussions, some questions have been raised about whether paid fantasy sports contests are permissible under Oregon law.
“While we respectfully disagree, we value our relationship with the Oregon lottery and share a common commitment to best serve Oregonians who are passionate about sports betting,” the note continues. “As such, DraftKings will stop paid fantasy sports contests in Oregon at 7am PST on July 26, 2021 so that those discussions can continue.”
And just like that, DraftKings has pulled the plug on daily fantasy in Oregon.
Predictably, players were not happy.
@oregon_lottery you better update your Scoreboard app game to include a useable DFS section b/c this is some serious 💩 I am going to lose all my achievements b/c of a couple greedy PERS-receiving-middle-mgmt bureaucrats.🖕🏻Same goes to you @DraftKings for not doing a better job! pic.twitter.com/HIgPVtvD6r
— braxtol (@braxtol) July 25, 2021
You can do meth in Oregon but can’t play Draftkings lol
— Mike McKinnon III (@MikeMcKinnonIII) July 24, 2021
— Adam P Farnsworth (@AdamPFarnsworth) July 24, 2021
FanDuel: We’re here!
Notably, there’s a different take from the other key Oregon DFS operator: FanDuel, which now finds itself no longer battling DraftKings for market share in the state. The company confirmed over the weekend that it will continue to offer paid daily fantasy sports contests.
Hey there, thanks for reaching out! Yes, we will continue to operate our DFS platform in Oregon as normal.
— FD Customer Support (@FanDuel_Support) July 24, 2021
This isn’t the first time DFS operators have had to shimmy-shimmy-shake in an effort to also get their sports betting operatons up and running. In Connecticut, both DraftKings and FanDuel were on the verge of being forced to give up their daily fantasy operations if they wanted to run sportsbooks.
In the end, a deal was struck that would allow daily fantasy sports operators to continue operations in the state, provided they partnered with existing tribal casinos or the lottery.
DraftKings had one in place with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe, which operates Foxwoods, and FanDuel was granted a provisional license with the Mohegan Tribe. Other operators, such as Underdog, PrizePicks, and MonkeyKnifeFight, have currently ceased operations in Connecticut.