DraftKings CEO On Legalized Sports Betting In NY: 'I'm Hoping It Happens Soon'

In this March 15, 2018 photo, people watch coverage of the first round of the NCAA college basketball tournament at the Westgate Superbook sports book in Las Vegas.
Photo credit AP

New York could soon be following in New Jersey’s footsteps when it comes to betting on sports.

New Jersey has become one of the country’s most popular locations for sports betting since it received the OK from state lawmakers following last year's landmark Supreme Court ruling. Much of those numbers are surely coming from New Yorkers who bet when they’re over the border in Jersey.

Jason Robins, the CEO of DraftKings, is one of the people working hard to get sports betting legalized across the United States. Robins joined Mike Francesa on Monday and provided an update on the efforts to bring sports betting to New York.

“Online and mobile (betting) is what people want, especially for those in Manhattan, where it’s a bit of a hike to drive up there (to a casino),” said Robins. “I’m hoping it happens soon. We’re working hard behind the scenes to try to work with lawmakers to get it done. Hopefully it will happen in the next year or so.”

New Jersey legalized sports betting in 2018. As of August 2019, 13 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws to allow betting on sports. New York passed a law approving limited sports betting, meaning it’s only allowed at state-designated casinos, which are all upstate. 

DraftKings has become the most popular sports betting app in the New Jersey market, and the company would certainly be a big player if New York finally succumbs to the pressure and enacts full legalization.

Robins thinks that sports betting feels like it’s sweeping across the country because of a “perfect storm” of factors. 

“I think that’s why it’s happening so fast. If the leagues were against it, it wouldn’t be happening this fast. It’s because of that. I think it’s the perfect storm of the path getting cleared by the Supreme Court, society being ready for this, technology being able to support, for mobile, the kinds of checks and security that you need, and then the leagues getting behind it all at the same time.”

Click on the audio player above to listen to Mike Francesa’s full interview with Jason Robins.