76ers, Devils Announce Partnership with Caesars Entertainment
Since the United States Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in May, several professional sports franchises and leagues in the U.S. have made moves to open themselves up to the world of sports gambling. Back in August, the NBA took the historic step of becoming the first American professional sports league to strike a deal with a betting sponsor when they came to terms with MGM. A month later, the Vegas Golden Knights became the first American professional sports franchise to do so when they did the same with William Hill sportsbook.
Now, a couple of more teams have followed suit. According to ESPN’s David Purdum, the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils have each agreed to partnerships with Caesars Entertainment. The Sixers and Devils are both owned by the same ownership group, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment. The deals are multi-year pacts, though no financial terms have been released to the public. Caesars becomes the first casino to ink a deal with both an NHL and an NBA franchise.
Caesars plans to open a betting lounge inside the Prudential Center, the home of the Devils. That’s an interesting tidbit considering just last week we learned the Prudential Center will also be opening another betting lounge sponsored by William Hill. The Devils certainly aren’t being shy about dipping their toes into the sports betting waters.
The deal will serve as a way for Caesars to promote its own sportsbook, which is already available at a couple of the company’s properties in Atlantic City, New Jersey, as well as the Caesars Casino & Sports mobile app. While the 76ers and Devils will promote Caesars within their respective arenas, Caesars will in turn promote both franchises at nearly 50 venues around the world. Caesars already owns Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack in Chester, Pennsylvania.
Sixers fans will be given opportunities to win prizes such as a free stay at the LINQ Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas or the Caesars Atlantic City Hotel & Casino. The 76ers will create an on-court game called “Score for the Shore” through which fans can win the aforementioned prizes. The team’s social media accounts will also have a “Live Like a Caesars VIP” social media contest through which fans can win.
The Devils will hold a “Shoot for a Million” on-ice promotion at Prudential Center in which fans will be afforded the chance to win $1 million during the intermission between the second and third periods. The contest will be hold across 10 regular season games. The Prudential Center will also open a 5,000-seat bar and restaurant called the Caesars Club on the arena’s main concourse.
This isn’t either franchise’s first foray into the world of sports gambling. Just recently the Devils announced their partnership with William Hill. Back in 2014, the 76ers announced a partnership with daily fantasy sports giant DraftKings, becoming DraftKings’ first professional sports partner in the process. Several franchises would follow in the Sixers’ footsteps. DraftKings also agreed to a deal with the Wells Fargo Center, home of the Sixers, to open a fantasy sports lounge inside the arena.
Neither lounge within the Prudential Center will serve as an actual sportsbook, but sports betting is allowed via mobile app for anybody physically located within the borders of the state of New Jersey. So, William Hill and Caesars plan to use the lounges to promote their respective mobile betting apps to help customers place wagers via mobile devices
In addition to the NBA, MGM also has a sponsorship deal with the NHL. The Dallas Cowboys recently struck a deal with WinStar World, while the Golden Knights and Devils have their aforementioned William Hill deals. Last week, Horseshoe Baltimore, a Caesars operation, announced a partnership with the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens.
Expect these kinds of partnerships to continue to flow with PASPA having been struck down earlier this year.
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