Chicago Cubs Consider Opening Sportsbook at Wrigley Field: Report - NBC Chicago
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Chicago Cubs Consider Opening Sportsbook at Wrigley Field: Report

Major League Baseball currently prohibits sportsbooks inside a team's stadium, but the league is reviewing new Illinois legislation

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Chicago Cubs Consider Opening Sportsbook at Wrigley Field: Report

    With state lawmakers approving a huge new gambling bill in Springfield, the focus is now on how soon might we see sports betting take place inside your favorite professional team's stadium? NBC 5's Mary Ann Ahern reports.

    (Published Monday, July 8, 2019)

    The Chicago Cubs are considering opening a sportsbook at Wrigley Field, according to a report from ESPN.

    Major League Baseball currently prohibits sportsbooks inside a team's stadium, but the league is reviewing new Illinois legislation that would legalize wagering for competitive professional sports at qualifying facilities.

    Earlier this month, lawmakers passed Senate Bill 690, which allows for the construction of six new casinos and authorizes regulated sports betting, among other initiatives. The bill is awaiting a signature from Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who has said he supports the measure.

    Multiple sources told ESPN that the Cubs were considering betting windows, automated kiosks and a potential sportsbook venue both within or just outside the Friendly Confines, David Purdum reported Sunday.

    The Cubs did not immeiately respond to requests for comment on the matter.

    Seven states have already adapted full scale betting. 

    "There's an old saying in gambling, the house always wins," said sports business consultant Marc Ganis with Sportscorp LTD. "In this case, the state of Illinois wants to be the house - that means there's going to be a lot of losers." 

    State Rep. Mike Zalewski said other stadiums are also expected to consider allowing sports betting, including Soldier Field, Guaranteed Rate Field, the United Center and Chicago Speedway. 

    "We're sort of getting over taxes in Illinois and this is something I think can mitigate a little bit of that," he said. 

    The timing of when such betting would become available at Chicago venues remains unclear. The leagues would still need to rewrite their rules, which currently prohibit in-person betting inside arenas. 

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