Digest (Jan. 9): Washington game sites could host sports betting

When sports gambling is formally legalized in Washington, fans will have the option to place bets in convenience stores, bars, restaurants or from their living room couches. But the most visible and elaborate betting venues could feel familiar to Washington sports fans: the high-traffic arenas and stadiums the city's professional teams call home. Mayor Muriel Bowser is expected to sign legislation that grants four arena and stadium operators the option of creating Las Vegas-style sportsbooks on-site. The exact timeline was cast into further uncertainty this week when the city council delayed a key vote that would have allowed the DC Lottery to begin negotiating with a preferred vendor. While the first legal sports bets likely won't take place until summer at the earliest, teams and stadium operators are weighing their options and deciding how they want to forge ahead. A city-sponsored study estimated that 150-200 Washington businesses might seek licenses to take sports bets, but the bill that was approved last month by the city council grants special privileges to the four stadiums and arenas. If those operators choose to get in the gambling business, no other entity can take sports bets legally within a two-block radius. That means the most prominent brick-and-mortar sports wagering locations in the city could be Capital One Arena, Nationals Park, the newly constructed Audi Field and the St. Elizabeths East Entertainment and Sports Arena. While the city works out details on regulation and licensing, those four stadium operators have to decide whether the potential revenue is worth the investment to create a glitzy sportsbook in and around their facilities. Officials with Capital One Arena owner Monumental Sports, the Nationals, D.C. United and Events DC, the District's convention and sports authority, which runs the St. Elizabeths arena, declined to discuss any specific plans before the mayor has signed the legislation into law.

— Rick Maese, The Washington Post


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National Women's Soccer League: The Washington Spirit acquired the No. 7 overall pick in the NWSL College Draft via trade from the Chicago Red Stars . In exchange, Washington sends the 20th pick in the draft and the club's natural first-round selection in the 2020 draft to the Red Stars. The Spirit holds five total picks in today's draft, including three selections in the first round at fourth, seventh and eighth overall. Washington also holds the 29th and 31st selections, both coming in the fourth round.

Men's college basketball: Senior Montaque Wright (Lake Clifton) had a triple double with 25 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists as Stevenson (11-4) defeated Messiah, 80-66, in Mid Atlantic Conference Commonwealth play at Owings Mills Gymnasium. ... Salisbury has climbed three spots to a season-high national ranking of No. 19 in the latest poll. The Sea Gulls have gone 3-1 since the last poll was released prior to the holidays, including a tournament-winning victory against then-No. 16 Nichols College at the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame Tournament in Springfield, Mass.

From Sun staff and news services