Congrats sports betting fans in Ontario, Canada!
Your province has finally welcomed you into the world of legal sports betting!
So what does that mean for our NFL fans in Ontar-e-air-e-air-e-oh?
Some great betting opportunities, which we will break down as we look at some of the companies setting up shop in our Ontario Best Bets.
Our own Wade and Ryan hail from the province of Ontario, Canada, so they know the pains and perils of having to use the antiquated ‘Pro Line’ parlay.
They have also lived in England long enough to know what makes a good betting company.
Pro Line was great in the early days, especially when they didn’t realise they didn’t keep on top of their Premier League product, and punters were able to bet on soccer games that already happened.
Canada has been WAY behind the world when it comes to the world of betting, so bettors are in for a quick, and steep learning curve.
What it Is
Ontario’s can now bet online on sports and casino games from April 4, 2022.
This was a pretty grey and dodgy market, as numerous casino providers have found ways to target Canadians with free to play slots and other late night shenanigans.
Sportsbooks must register with the provinces iGaming Market must first register with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission, and since Canada loves ‘rules’, the arduous process has weeded out some of the less enthusiastic providers.
Bettors can be registered anywhere in the world, but they need to be in Ontario to make the bets.
Major sports are fair game to bet on, but amateur sports (CHL) and virtual sports are off limit.
Horseracing is run the federal mafia…government, so those betting companies looking to lock up the ponies will need to tweak their products.
As you can well imagine, all of these betting companies are foreign (The Score has Canadian roots), and have very little experience with Canadian betting habits.
What we have seen from the rapid expansion of America, is that many European betting companies run roughshod into the market, without even knowing the nuances of what audiences are looking for.
Odds that are formatted in European standards, failing to comprehend nuances in sport selection, and a general arrogance of ‘we know what you want to bet on’ attitude has actually frightened as many people as it ha enticed.
Canada (and Ontario) are massive territories and markets with incredibly diversity.
Hopefully these companies don’t attempt to shoebox bettors into limited options like they have south of the border.
So which of these betting companies is going to offer you not only the best selection, but also the best learning curve to getting your bet on?
There are two that we would recommend given previous experience, but of course we are UK based now, and haven’t used these Ontario products (yet).
We do have decades of betting experience, and have worked with many of these companies, so we will tap into that.
One thing to note is the variety of new players to the market (or those who renamed themselves).
Just because it has a fancy new name, doesn’t mean that you should trust them with your money.
So the two betting sites that we as Ontarian’s with sports betting experience would suggest?
1. The Score
Ontarians will be familiar with The Score, a mainstay of sports TV in the early 2000s.
After being tucked into the belt of Rogers Media, then Penn National Gaming, The Score has positioned itself as one of the emerging sources of Canadian sports media.
The Score app constantly wins rave reviews for its comprehensive lineup of sports content, and has been a driving force into tapping into emerging platforms.
Canadians LOVE a consistent Canadian brand that provides them with that they need (Tim Horton’s, Swiss Chalet, PornHub) & The Score offers the best betting options that we have seen for the Canadian betting market.
A good betting option, despite their cringe-worthy commercials.
After years of spending fast cash on countless commercials, Draftkings has solidified itself in the eyes and minds of Ontario bettors.
Despite starting our as a DFS only option, Draftkings has matured its offerings by pivoting to the demand for traditional sports betting options.
Draftkings has had a presence in Canada for the past 7 years, so they stand to transition to this whole new provincial positioning.
DK was late to the party in Ontario in terms of license application, but it’s safe to say that DraftKings will be able to get in the game in 2022.
Hit up Draftkings here.
European bookmakers Bet365, 888, & Unibet all make the splash across the pond in April, as they attempt to do what Marks & Spencer failed to do, sustain a British invasion.
All three of these providers are noticeably tone deaf to North American sports, with Bet365 offering a shambolic NFL product that’s so bad, it’s deletable.
Poinstbet, the thunder from down under is another new player to the North American betting scene.
Despite not having much experience in global sports betting, Pointsbet has decided to splash the cash, tossing toonies at the likes of Curling Canada and the Trailer Park Boys.
It’s like they Googled ‘What do Canadians Like?’ without actually talking to Canadians.
Canadians are happy to take free money, but we don’t appreciate being fed the same diet as Americans.
A cautionary tale for other big brands who have tried to roll onto the tundra with deep pockets, only to realise Canadians don’t think this way, in fact-it turns them off.
Yankee Doodle Dandies like BetMGM, and Caesars Sportsbook have been on a mission to conquer the world!
Sadly they should first conquer their products, which pale as cheap imitations compared to some of the more established players.
Just like Vegas, these products are new, cheap, and filled with smoke.
Who the what now? Other new brands like Coolbet, Casimba, Fitzdares and Rivalry are also new to the province, but will mostly be targeting the elderly with their casino products.
Time will tell if they last or go the way of Nando’s.
If you’re new to sports betting, take it slow.
There’s no need to rush into the sports betting game if you’re not sure what you’re doing.
And never spend more than you can afford! Keep it less than your weekly coffee spend if you just want to have some fun.
Keep watching this space. We will update on the progress of Ontario and Canada betting as we know more.
Any remember, it’s yours to discover.