Sports betting has been a part of the sports fans’ experience as long as sports have been a part of human culture. Even the ancient Romans enjoyed placing bets on the outcomes of gladiator fights and chariot races. A lot has changed since then — although with online sports betting no one will judge you if you feel like placing some bets from home in a toga!
Betting in Canada has been tightly controlled and up until fairly recently it was limited to betting on horse racing in person and placing parlay bets. In 2021, parliament passed bill C-218. This bill made it possible for each province to pass its own laws regulating all forms of iGaming. Ontario was the first province to act on this new freedom, and as of April 2022 online sports betting is now legal.
Online sports betting has had many years to develop in other countries, primarily the United Kingdom, and more recently in the United States. There is already a huge online betting market that bettors from Ontario can now participate in. While all this variety is fantastic and means there are plenty of opportunities to bet on any sport, it can also be confusing.
New bettors often have a ton of questions that need to be answered before they’re ready to place their first bet. Is it better to bet with an established land-based brand or an online-only sportsbook? Are these welcome promotions too good to be true? How do you find the best odds?
A visit to Ontario’s online sports betting hub is a must when choosing a sportsbook. For new bettors, it’s a guide that can answer the questions they have before they make an account anywhere. For experienced bettors, it’s a place to research alternative sportsbooks that might be better suited for betting on a certain sport.
In this article, we’ll explain how sports betting guides make their recommendations and what matters when choosing a sportsbook. Then we’ll go over some of the leading sportsbooks for bettors in Ontario.
How to choose a sportsbook
In order to operate legally in Ontario, a sportsbook needs to have a valid license. There are many countries that provide licences, but they don’t all have the same reputations. Some licensing bodies, such as the United Kingdom Gambling Commission and the Malta Gaming Authority, are very well-respected and license many of the top sportsbooks and casinos.
Operating in Ontario requires a license from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (ACGO). ACGO is a trusted body and highly respected in the industry. If you travel a lot and would like to bet on sports from outside of the province, it is a good idea to consider sportsbooks which hold multiple licenses.
Any site that requires users to enter personal and financial information is always going to be a target for hackers and scammers. Online casinos and sportsbooks are targets for this reason. That’s why it’s important to consider what kind of security software your chosen sportsbook uses.
You should always look for evidence that a sportsbook uses SSL 128-bit encryption. This encryption is incredibly hard to crack, so your private data and financial information will be protected.
Bonuses and promotions
In order to attract new bettors and to reward loyal customers, sportsbooks will offer welcome bonuses and special promotions. Some of these can sound too good to be true, but most of them are just a great reward for bettors.
Not all of them will be as valuable for each person though. For example, if you have no interest in slot games and a bonus includes a free bet and 100 free spins, those spins will go to waste. Alternatively, if a bonus includes three free bets but one bet must be on horse racing and one must be on football, but you only bet on rugby, then you’re really only getting one free bet.
It’s also essential to read the fine print for any bonus. Every sports betting site will have wagering requirements that you must met in order to withdraw any winnings you’ve earned from free bets or deposits. With the best sportsbooks, these requirements will be reasonable to meet. Scam sportsbooks may make them impossibly high for the average person.
Odds and bet types
Comparing odds can give you a good idea of whether you want to open an account with a certain sports betting site. You will want to verify that they offer odds on the sport you want to bet on and not just on the most popular sports or biggest tournaments.
The best sportsbooks will offer a variety of different types of bets. You want to be able to place more than just a single bet, even if that’s where most bettors start out. Being able to place prop bets, parlays or complex bets can increase the entertainment.
Being able to make deposits and withdrawals with your preferred payment method is important. It’s hard to feel comfortable spending money when you don’t trust the payment method. Top betting sites will accept a wide range of payment methods. The most popular are credit and debit cards, bank transfers, e-wallets and payment apps.
Even with the best sportsbooks, there is always a chance that something could go wrong. If it does, you want to know that customer support is easy to contact, quick to respond and able to provide effective support.
The best sportsbooks will provide more than one way to reach their customer support team. A telephone number, dedicated email address and live chat are the three methods you can typically expect to see. Being available 24/7 is a perk, but for smaller sportsbooks it simply isn’t possible; however, this doesn’t necessarily impact the quality of support that you receive.
Best sportsbooks in Ontario in 2023
BetMGM is the betting site for the MGM casino brand. With so many decades of experience in the business in Las Vegas, they are an elite sportsbook that has worked out any problems long ago. Aside from being one of the most recognized and respected casino brands, BetMGM has the added appeal of being one of the sportsbooks that has partnered with an NHL team.
Though new to North America, BetVictor has a long history in the UK. They have one of the easiest to use sites with a very intuitive app. They offer odds on more sports than almost all their competitors.
If supporting local businesses is important to you, definitely consider Toronto-founded and based Northstar Bets. Although smaller and younger than many of the other top brands, they fully understand the Canadian betting market and how best to support their customers.
LeoVegas may be better known for their leading online casino, but their sportsbook is also one of the best. In addition to traditional betting, they also provide bettors with live/in-play betting options. Their customer support team is available 24/7 and they have a convenient live chat option.
BetRivers consistently offers some of the best odds on the market, making them a very appealing option. They have also established a reputation for having rapid withdrawal times, which is an added bonus.
Matt Irwin Deserves a Spot on the Canucks’ NHL Roster, Right?
How to Spot a Trustworthy Online Casino in Canada
Spotting a trustworthy online casino isn’t hard once you know what to look for, but until then, you better hold off on signing up or making a deposit. This quick guide on how to find a reputable online casino will cover five different factors you can evaluate to determine whether or not a casino is trustworthy. While you could just use a site like the trusted source WikiHow that lists the best online casinos Canada, it does help to be able to evaluate the trustworthiness of casinos on your own. Likewise, you shouldn’t believe everything you read on the internet. Casino review sites are a great resource, but it doesn’t hurt to also do a little digging of your own. Without further delay, here’s a quick and easy guide on how to spot a trustworthy online casino.
Checking for Proper Licensing and Regulation
One of the first things you should do when assessing the trustworthiness of the best online casinos Canada is to check for proper licensing and regulation. Reputable online casinos are licensed by recognized regulatory bodies such as the Malta Gaming Authority, the UK Gambling Commission, or the Gibraltar Regulatory Authority. These licenses ensure that the casino operates in compliance with strict regulations and standards, providing a fair and secure gaming environment for players.
Never play at a casino that does not have a license or whose license is unverifiable. The easiest way to verify a license is to head to the licensor’s website and cross-check their registry with the name of the casino you’re looking at. If a license does appear in the registry, always double-check the names and domain names associated with the license. Some scam sites use domains that look similar to real casinos and act as if they are operating under their license. When in doubt, head to the URL listed on the license you find in the registry to be sure that you’re at the right site.
Evaluating the Casino’s Security Measures
Examining the Casino’s Game Selection
Game selection is another important factor to consider when choosing from the best online casinos Canada. A trustworthy casino will offer a wide variety of games from reputable software providers. Look for popular titles from well-known developers such as Microgaming, NetEnt, and Playtech. Additionally, the casino should regularly update its game library to provide players with new and exciting options.
Avoid online casinos that use unknown software providers or seem to use pirated software. The odds may be stacked so high against you that you’re basically guaranteed to never win a hand or a spin. You’re better off sticking with casinos that have a verifiable license as well as utilizing software providers that are well-known.
Verifying the Casino’s Customer Support
Good customer support is essential for a positive online casino experience. A trustworthy casino will have a responsive and knowledgeable support team available to assist you with any queries or concerns. Look for casinos that offer multiple support channels, such as live chat, email, and telephone. Additionally, check for the casino’s operating hours to ensure that support is available when you need it. You should also try and give their customer support a test run. By simply asking their 24/7 Live Chat simple questions about the site, you can get a feel for their response time and overall knowledge. Sites with poor customer service will often take a long time to connect to an agent and be unable to answer even the simplest of queries.
Looking for Fair and Transparent Bonus Terms
Bonuses and promotions are a common feature of online casinos, but it’s important to carefully review the terms and conditions associated with these offers. A trustworthy casino will have fair and transparent bonus terms, clearly outlining the wagering requirements, maximum bet limits, and any other conditions that apply. Avoid casinos that have overly restrictive or confusing bonus terms, as this may indicate a lack of transparency.
In conclusion, when looking for a trustworthy online casino, it’s important to consider factors such as proper licensing and regulation, security measures, game selection, customer support, and bonus terms. By taking the time to evaluate these aspects, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable gaming experience. Remember to always gamble responsibly and set limits for yourself to avoid any potential issues.
Canadiens acquire Tanner Pearson, trade Casey DeSmith to Canucks
A third-round pick in 2025 also goes to Montreal in the deal completed Tuesday.
Pearson hasn’t played since suffering a broken hand last November during a game in Montreal.
Pearson, 31, had one goal and four assists in 14 games last season.
In 590 career games with the Canucks, Pittsburgh Penguins and Los Angeles Kings, Pearson has 133 goals and 139 assists for 272 points.
The Kings picked the Barrie Colts product in the first round (30th overall) of the 2012 NHL Draft.
Pearson is in the final year of a three-year contract with a cap hit of $3.25 million.
DeSmith, 32, has been with the Pittsburgh Penguins since 2017-18. He was acquired by the Canadians in a three-team deal also involving the San Jose Sharks last month.
DeSmith was 15-16-4 with a 3.17 goals-against average and .905 save percentage last season.
In 134 career games, the undrafted DeSmith is 58-44-15 with a 2.81 GAA and .912 save percentage.
DeSmith is on the final year of a two-year deal with a cap hit of $1.8 million.
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