Wednesday, November 11, 2015
New York’s attorney general on Tuesday ordered the daily fantasy sports companies DraftKings and FanDuel to stop accepting bets in the state, saying their operations amount to illegal gambling.
In a pair of letters sent to the companies, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said that after a one-month investigation, his office had concluded that the daily contests are essentially games of chance, not skill.
He drew a sharp distinction between the operations of daily fantasy sports sites and traditional fantasy leagues, which he said were legal partly because they relied on months of smart play over the course of several months. DraftKings and FanDuel contests, he wrote, are about “instant gratification” and involve no long-term strategy.
Schneiderman also said advertisements by the two companies, including one from Draft Kings promoting the site as “the simplest way of winning life-changing piles of cash,” misled players about their chances of winning. The top 1 percent of players, he wrote, take home most of the prizes.
“Daily fantasy sports is neither victimless nor harmless, and it is clear that DraftKings and FanDuel are the leaders of a massive, multibillion-dollar scheme intended to evade the law and fleece sports fans across the country,” Schneiderman said in a statement issued after the letters were sent.
Both companies insisted that their games are legal and based on skill and said they were reviewing their legal options.