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What coronavirus impact means for sports betting, DFS at DraftKings

There will be some refunds, and some waiting for word from the NBA.

Fan leave after an announcement that the Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Utah Jazz game is canceled just before the tip off at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA suspended its season on Wednesday following word that Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus. Other sports leagues are continuing play for the time being with no fan attendance in some instances, but the NBA is pulling the plug given the complications of a single player having coronavirus.

The NBA is the first US-based league to suspend play, but not the first in the world. Italy’s major soccer league, Serie A suspended play as well, and other leagues could join them soon.

In doing so, this creates a variety of complications. Health is first and foremost, but it is worth noting that people are impacted who take part in sports betting and daily fantasy sports. Late Wednesday, DraftKings Sportsbook and daily fantasy services made a pair of announcements for impacted people.

The sportsbook has shut down all betting on the NBA for the time being. DK announced that all bets for last night’s cancelled games will be voided and bettors will get their money back for the wagers. Any futures bets placed will remain active until the NBA decides how to proceed with the season. You can no longer place futures bets, but if you have one in place, it will be on hold until more is known.

A suspended season means there is an opportunity to resume play, but it could impact the length of the season. A win total bet in the NBA was placed assuming 82 games would be played. If the season plays less than 82 games, that changes the arithmetic.

Last night saw the Jazz-Thunder and Pelicans-Kings postponed. DK announced later in the evening that if you entered an event and had rostered players from either of those games, DK, “will be issuing you a site credit for your entry fees minus your winnings.”