Arizona Finally Gets Daily Fantasy Sports Sites with DraftKings, FanDuel Launches
Denise Truscello/Getty Images for DraftKings.
- Daily fantasy sports contests have been very popular for nearly a decade in the U.S., but until now Arizona users were not able to participate.
- As of Saturday, August 28, both DraftKings and FanDuel are live and operating in Arizona, allowing residents of the Grand Canyon State to immediately play in contests for college football, NFL, baseball, and more.
- There's more good news, too: Pre-registration for online sports betting is also officially live in Arizona, and everyone will be able to start betting on September 9, the start of the NFL season.
Arizona’s first legal daily fantasy sports operators are now live.
DraftKings and FanDuel, the nation’s two most prominent DFS operators, are now letting Arizona players set lineups for the first time ever. Arizona lawmakers formally legalized DFS contests as part of a larger gaming expansion package approved earlier this year.
Arizona officials announced Friday it has approved six total DFS licenses:
- Fantasy Sports Shark
- Underdog Sports
Other major DFS operators including Monkey Knife Fight (owned by Bally’s) and SuperDraft (Caesars) are also expected to launch both their daily fantasy and sports betting products in the state.
DraftKings and FanDuel are set to launch their respective online sportsbooks Sept. 9.
Nationwide Expansion Continues
DraftKings daily fantasy sports contests are now available in 44 states following Saturday’s Arizona launch. The company will offer contests for certain professional, college and international leagues, including its popular NFL and MLB offerings, DraftKings announced in a statement Friday.
“There is no better time of the year to launch our leading daily fantasy sports app than ahead of the NFL season,” said Matt Kalish, co-founder and president of DraftKings North America, in a press release. “We’re excited for the opportunity to provide Arizona sports fans with the thrill of having some skin-in-the-game as we head into what we expect to be the busiest time of the year for our company.”
DraftKings will offer Arizona players its flagship array of “classic” contests, where users draft a team position-by-position across multiple games from a designated player pool using a predetermined salary cap. Players can also enter Showdown Contests where they must draft from a single game, round or match.
FanDuel, DraftKings’ long-time DFS and sports betting rival, announced its Arizona daily fantasy launch earlier this year as part of its larger gaming partnership with the NBA’s Phoenix Suns. Like DraftKings, FanDuel will offer a wide range of DFS options for Arizona players.
“Designed for the everyday fan, FanDuel’s fantasy sports app offers boundless options in daily, weekly or season-long contests with cash prizes,” the company announced in a press release earlier this year.
Non-Operating State List Shrinks
Arizona’s launch follows a similar sports betting and daily fantasy implementation approved by Iowa last year and continues to dwindle the footprint of states without legal DFS options.
Nevada technically legalized daily fantasy sports but requires operators to license under similar regulations to gambling entities. DraftKings and FanDuel have long maintained their DFS contests are not gambling products.
Washington, Idaho, Montana and Hawaii are among the few remaining states without legal DFS operators. DraftKings stopped operating its DFS products in Oregon as it worked toward securing the state lottery-run mobile sportsbook’s branding rights, which was approved by state officials Thursday.