DraftKings Ontario Sportsbook and LeoVegas Casino Ontario issued statements this week saying they would no longer be offering bets on sports leagues or teams in Russia or Belarus in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Head over to the PROLINE+ site, the online one currently available for Ontario sports betting, and you won’t find any of those leagues or teams there either.
Invasion Leads to OLG Decision
”As of Feb. 25, OLG stopped offering wagers on select markets on PROLINE+ and PROLINE at retail, consistent with actions taken by the province, Canada and global lottery and sports betting partners,” an Ontario Lottery and Gaming spokesperson said. “We will reassess this decision on wagering at the appropriate time as global events continue to unfold.”
Belarus has backed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has drawn worldwide condemnation including in the sports world.
Meanwhile, in terms of PROLINE numbers, hockey betting has been showing strong growth in the new year. February was the highest monthly sales numbers for the NHL to date, according to the OLG. With the lull in NBA play over the All-Star break, the NHL held 24 of the top 25 events last week.
With the April 4 launch of other online operators pending, the Raptors and Hornets was the only non-NHL game at No. 12. The top three of the week were all Maple Leafs games.
Picture of Action After NFL Season
The NFL’s very large betting shadow is now gone for another season, and other markets are benefitting. For example, NCAA basketball has seen 43% sales growth from January to February.
For March Madness, on the men’s side, PROLINE will feature complete pregame as well as in-game coverage. Another first for PROLINE will be complete pregame coverage of the women’s tournament as well as in-play for the Sweet 16. They’re also offering complete pregame coverage for the NIT tournaments and in-game when possible.
PROLINE will also be offering a special pools card for the final game of the main tournament, similar in tone to the one they ran for the Super Bowl, which they said got great feedback from patrons. With pools, players predict who will win in any matchup, on any pools card.