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Parlays, point spreads: Sports betting launches in Virginia

The state lottery has approved online sportsbooks operated by both FanDuel and DraftKings, bringing gambling competition to the state.

WASHINGTON — Sports betting in Virginia is now a reality. The state lottery has approved an online sportsbook operated by FanDuel through a partnership with the Washington Football Team, and DraftKings has also opened its separate sportsbook, bring gambling competition to the Commonwealth.

FanDuel jumped on the head start it received from the lottery. After receiving approval Wednesday, it was signing up customers in Virginia and started taking bets last Thursday. 

DraftKings launched its sportsbook in Virginia just in time for the NFC and AFC championship games on Sunday. 

“Just in time for Super Bowl LV, we are thrilled to bring the DraftKings sports betting experience to Virginia with an abundance of betting options for fans,” said Jason Robins, co-founder and CEO, DraftKings. “With our customer-first approach, we hope to be the sportsbook of choice for Virginians who enjoy having skin in the game.”

The approval comes after Virginia passed legislation last year legalizing sports gambling. The law requires that all sportsbooks be online only.

Meanwhile, two dozen other would-be competitors are still waiting to see if they will receive one of what is expected to be a dozen additional permits.

The move for Virginia is a solid one. Both the Commonwealth and Maryland have been vying for sports betting laws that could entice Dan Snyder and the Washington Football Team to move its dream of a new stadium to their state. D.C., where sports betting has already taken off, will also look to bring the team back to the District, by appealing to its desire for a sports-betting friendly stadium.

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