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With Closed Casinos, Nevada’s March Gaming Revenue Suffered Major Drop

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Last week the Nevada Gaming Control Board reported that the amount of money won by Nevada casinos in March fell by almost 40% compared to the same period last year. Gaming revenue for the state was $618 million in March. That’s a decrease of 39.57% from March of 2019 when casinos won $1.022 billion.

The reason for the huge decrease in gaming revenue for Nevada is the closure of all casinos in the state on March 17 to help slow the spread of coronavirus.

Different drops for different regions

Nevada casinos in different parts of the state have different customers. In fact, even casinos in the Las Vegas area have different gambling guests. The Vegas Strip is dominated by high rollers and large casino corporations. Downtown Las Vegas and the suburban casinos cater to different tourists and local residents.

Not only are there different casino operators but the guests play varying games and have varying budgets. Casinos on the Vegas Strip won $299.9 million from gaming customers in March. That’s a decrease of 45.67% from last year.

Meanwhile, casinos in downtown Las Vegas weren’t hit as hard on a percentage basis. These casinos won $43 million. That’s only a decrease of 25.92% from the previous year.

Nevada sports betting demolished

The amount of money won by Nevada sportsbooks was crushed before casinos were even closed. The NBA suspended its season five days before casinos were told to close their doors. Other major sports, including the NCAA basketball tournament (AKA March Madness), followed the NBA’s lead.

March is chock full of college basketball games for bettors. Between the large volume of college basketball conference tournament games and the 63 games (plus play-in games) during March Madness, Nevada sportsbooks lost one of the largest cash generators of the year. For comparison, the entire NCAA basketball tournament typically sees as much money wagered as the Super Bowl.

Nevada sportsbooks saw a massive 76.3% decrease in its sports betting handle compared to last March. This was the lowest monthly handle for Nevada since 1993. March Madness typically draws less experienced sports bettors which means that sportsbooks typically win more of the wagers placed.

Without March Madness, Nevada sportsbooks only won $1.5 million from $141 million wagered in March. This is a 95.5% drop from a year ago.

April gaming revenue will be much worse

April’s gaming revenue in Nevada will be much worse. While casinos were closed in the middle of March, they’ve remained closed for the entire month of April. Additionally, video poker and slot machines in bars, taverns, supermarkets, and gas stations have also been turned off.

The only gaming revenue in Nevada for the month will come from one of the following sports wagering apps that remained open for the month.

  • BetMGM
  • Caesars
  • Circa Sports
  • William Hill

These four sportsbooks were only available to existing customers. Players must visit a brick and mortar casino to first set up a new sports wagering account. Since casinos were closed, no new accounts could be opened and funded.

Nevada doesn’t have full online casinos like New Jersey or Pennsylvania but it does have an online poker website. WSOP.com was also operational while brick and mortar casinos were closed in April.

Nevada casinos reopening

Nevada casinos won’t reopen on until mid to late May at the earliest. Governor Steve Sisolak says casinos will be able to open again during the third or fourth phase of his reopening plan.

Regardless of the opening date for brick and mortar casinos, the four sportsbook apps will have company. The Westgate SuperBook says the app will be turned on again on May 7.

When casinos do open for business again, don’t expect to see a return to normal business right away. During its first-quarter earnings call, MGM Resorts CEO Bill Hornbuckle said the company would open properties in phases. Bellagio and New York-New York will be MGM Resorts’ first two Las Vegas casinos to reopen. There could be another casino opening depending on demand.

While MGM Resorts doesn’t have a health and safety plan for reopening yet the company will have one in the next two weeks. They say that casino floors will have to be reconfigured to allow proper spacing. This should mean fewer table games and machines will be available right away. As a result, gaming revenue should be lower even after casinos reopen.



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New Jersey, Pennsylvania Online Gambling Revenue See Big Uptick In March

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This was supposed to be a landmark time of the year.

Two of the biggest and flourishing legal sports betting industries were supposed to be reaping the rewards of one of the sporting year’s busiest times: March MadnessMLB, the Masters, and postseason pushes for the NBA and NHL.

What an incredible month — certainly one that would produce record-breaking sports betting handle and revenue numbers for both New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Yet we were left wanting. The coronavirus pandemic shut it all down. All that’s left is what could have been.

That said, online gambling did not completely suffer. Rather, both online casinos and online poker saw an uptick. And last month, industries in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania seemingly compensated for a lack of sports.

New Jersey online gambling flourishes

Believe it or not, online gambling has been a mainstay in New Jersey for going on seven years. No month, however, has ever been as prosperous as March 2020.

Online casinos and poker operators reported a jaw-dropping $64.8 million in revenue. How big is that? Well, it sits nearly $13 million more than the previous month, for starters. More important, though, that total is the industry’s first month exceeding $60 million. And it’s actually nearly $10 million more than the state’s previous best monthly report.

If those feats aren’t enough, March 2020 numbers reflect an astonishing 65.6% increase year over year.

The kicker, though, lies with online poker. Entering March, this sector had not eclipsed $2 million in monthly revenue since August 2017. It hadn’t seen more than $3 million since October 2016. In January 2014, the state enjoyed its best poker month with $3.4 million in revenue.

You see where this is going: In March 2020, New Jersey online poker posted a whopping $3.6 million in revenue. Month over month, that’s a 101% spike.

All told, all but one online casino in the state reported record-setting revenue figures in March.

Certainly, these online platforms benefited from stay-at-home orders. Gov. Phil Murphy ordered the closure of Atlantic City casinos midway through the month. And when leagues began suspending and canceling events, online casinos and poker filled the void.

PA online gambling shows a similar trend

New Jersey was not alone in rewriting the history books.

Neighboring Pennsylvania was coming off a record-setting February. As the Keystone State nears the anniversary of its first online casinos, the industry put up yet another historic month.

Already trending upward, what with revenues up over 31% month to month since December, operators in March reported some $24.3 million in online revenue, marking a 24.5% increase from February. That total breaks down to a $12.4 million/$8.8 million/$3.1 million slash line for online slots/table games/poker.

It’s not just the revenue that stands out, but also the action. Consider players in Pennsylvania accounted for $871.6 million in total wagers, up nearly $170 million from the previous month. Staggering.

Like in New Jersey, the uptick in Pennsylvania can assuredly be attributed to mass shutdowns. With casinos closing down amid the coronavirus pandemic, overall gambling revenue in Pennsylvania actually dropped by 51%.

Takeaways from NJ, PA online gambling reports

Leagues and organizers suspending and canceling events sent a shockwave across not only the country but the world. What were fans and bettors to do?

From jump street, operators who integrated online casinos with online sportsbooks or vice versa made sure to cross-promote. The two industries appeal to different demographics. Get your slot players to notice the NFL lines, for example, or market table games to the everyday sports bettor.

March 2020 emerges as the most significant example of such strategies paying off.

What’s more, online gambling in New Jersey and Pennsylvania could open the eyes of lawmakers in other states. After all, those states could certainly use revenue from somewhere, right?



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Join PlayUSA Twitch Streamer Anthony F Cicali For His March 31 Fundraiser

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A regularly scheduled Twitch stream will carry more weight this time around.

Ahead of his March 31 airing on the PlayUSA channel, which features Chumba CasinoAnthony F. Cicali III, aka EatAHoagie, announced that all donations raised during the stream will benefit the First Responders Children’s Foundation in this time of the coronavirus outbreak.

Taking to Twitch to help coronavirus efforts

Chumba slots is the regular Tuesday streaming game of choice for Cicali.

Starting at 8:30 p.m. ET, however, the March 31 edition will be a change of pace.

Rather than splitting the donations between the stream team made during the airing, as he usually does, Cicali will forward along funds to the First Responders Children’s Foundation.

The foundation supports families of first responders “who are enduring financial hardship due to the coronavirus outbreak,” according to its website.

“A lot of my friends are police officers, nurses and other first responders and I’ve already seen how much of a stressful struggle this has been,” Cicali said. “Because these people don’t get to stay home. They are on the front lines. So Tuesday night on the PlayUSA Twitch page, I am hosting a charity stream. Any bits or donations I raise that night will go directly to [the charity].”

Cicali will take to Chumba Casino, which features slot titles, blackjack and video poker among its other offerings. The online platform is available to play in most of the United States as the site utilizes sweepstakes laws to create a place where players use Gold Coins to play in hopes of winning Sweeps Coins, which can be exchanged for cash.



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A Rundown of Top Online Poker Events For The Weekend Of March 28

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As the world continues to fight back against coronavirus, social and physical distancing have taken effect. Folks have holed themselves up as a preventative measure.

In turn, the public has shifted attention to legal online casinos and online poker, and poker operators have introduced various events and tournaments.

Need to find a table this weekend? Look no further than these events happening online.

Where to play legal online poker

Only select states offer regulated real-money poker in the US: DelawareNevadaNew Jersey and Pennsylvania.

The likes of PokerStars and World Series of Poker (WSOP) are heavy-hitters in the online poker world. So, too, is Global Poker, which prides itself on the social gaming aspect.

PokerStars stands as the largest online poker operator in the world, offering a wide array of cash games and tournaments for players in New Jersey, Nevada and Pennsylvania. Those wanting to play on the WSOP site have the option of a shared liquidity pool among players from New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware.

Global Poker, meanwhile, allows players to buy Gold Coins for for ring games and tourneys.

PokerStars online poker events

A pleasant surprise of late has been the rising popularity of online poker in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Here is the schedule for players in Pennsylvania:

No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $30
Guaranteed prize pool: $15,000

No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $250
Prize pool: $20,000

The Big
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $20
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

Sunday Storm, No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 5 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

The Big
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

Bounty Builder, PKO
Date: March 29, 9 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $20
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

Sunday Supersonic
Date: March 29, 10 p.m.
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

For those in New Jersey, here are the upcoming tournaments:

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 4 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 5 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

No Limit Texas Hold Em, deposit freeroll
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: Ticket
Guaranteed prize pool: $1,000 added

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $200
Guaranteed prize pool: $40,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $500
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

8-Game
Date: March 29, 8:30 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $1,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 10 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $75
Guaranteed prize pool: $5,000

And with several variations of Championship of Online Poker (COOP), PokerStars has helped spearhead the uptick of online poker.

The Spring Championship of Online Poker will be the first such event in PA and feature a whopping $2 million guarantee. New Jersey, meanwhile, expects to have a $1.2 million guarantee, representing a $200,000 increase from 2019.

Those tourneys are scheduled for April 4, allowing for enough practice time.

Complete schedules for both events are expected shortly.

WSOP.com online poker events

A premier event expects to be a monumental hit during this summer’s World Series of Poker. And one last qualifying event is left for players hoping to join those tables.

The $55 March Mayhem tournaments boast a $50,000 guarantee and a seat at the Big 50 table to the winner. Players have one final opportunity to earn that seat as March Mayhem wraps up March 29.

Take solace for non-winners, however: Those players who have entered at least two tourneys receive tickets to a Big 50 Seat Freeroll, which awards five seats at the Big 50 table.

Not to be outdone, WSOP.com is looking to make up for postponed and canceled events. As part of its Online Super Series, WSOP hands out 18 WSOP Circuit rings in 18 days. One of the primetime tables: a $525 Main Event with $200,000 guaranteed.

The series goes through March 31. Here’s a look at this weekend’s events:

  • Saturday, March 28: 7 p.m. ET, $320 buy-in, $75,000 guarantee
  • Sunday, March 29: 5 p.m. ET, $525 buy-in, $200,000 guarantee

To boot, players in Nevada and New Jersey have access to daily WSOP tournaments:

  • Daily, 4 p.m. ET, $215 buy-in, $10,000 guarantee
  • Daily, 11 p.m. ET, $30 buy-in, $10,000 guarantee
  • Wednesdays, 8:30 p.m. ET, $20,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 8:30 p.m. ET, $500 buy-in, $20,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 10 p.m. ET, $250 buy-in, $15,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 11:30 p.m. ET, $1,000 buy-in, $20,000 guarantee

Global Poker online poker events

Like WSOP, Global Poker continues to add to its tournament schedule to help meet the demand for online poker.

On top of five-figure guarantees during the week, Global Poker offers several high-profile payouts over the weekend, including:

  • Friday Flash: SC15,000 Guaranteed
  • Saturday Swift: SC15,000 Guaranteed
  • Sunday Six: SC15,000 Guaranteed

The site has also ramped up its daily offerings including its new “NightCap” series for night time players. Here’s a look at the complete slate of new dailies:

Throughout the night, too, Global Poker features a variety of events for night owls:

  • 6 p.m. ET, SC11 buy-in, SC6,000 guaranteed
  • 6:45 p.m. ET, SC55 buy-in, SC8,500 guarantee
  • 8:00 p.m. ET, SC5.50 buy-in, SC15,000 guarantee
  • 8:30 p.m. ET, SC33 buy-in, SC20,000 guarantee
  • 10 p.m. ET, SC55 buy-in, SC10,000 guarantee
  • 11 p.m. ET, SC11 buy-in, SC5,000 guarantee
  • Midnight ET, SC21.50 buy-in, SC3,000 guarantee
  • 12:30 a.m. ET, SC22 buy-in, SC2,000 guarantee
  • 1 a.m. ET, SC21.40 buy-in, SC2,000 guarantee
  • 1:30 a.m. ET, SC21.40 buy-in, SC1,500 guarantee

Finally, Global Poker strengthened its weekend schedule with the addition of a deepstack event featuring SC1,500 guarantee. Those tourneys begin each Sunday at 4:15 p.m. ET.

In addition, Global padded its Saturday schedule of events:

  • SC11 buy-in, 3 p.m. ET, SC3,000 guaranteed
  • SC22 buy-in, 4:15 p.m. ET, SC6,000 guaranteed
  • SC55 buy-in, 5:30 p.m. ET, SC12,000 guaranteed

Finally, several satellite tourneys will run earlier in the day each Saturday, awarding seats to the major events:

  • SC2.20 buy-in, 2:20 p.m. ET, 12 seats guaranteed
  • SC3.21 buy-in, 2:50 p.m. ET, 10 seats guaranteed
  • SC3.30 buy-in, 3:20 p.m. ET, 8 seats guaranteed
  • SC5.30 buy-in, 4:05 p.m. ET, 10 seats guaranteed

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A Rundown of Top Online Poker Events For The Weekend Of March 28

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As the world continues to fight back against coronavirus, social and physical distancing have taken effect. Folks have holed themselves up as a preventative measure.

In turn, the public has shifted attention to legal online casinos and online poker, and poker operators have introduced various events and tournaments.

Need to find a table this weekend? Look no further than these events happening online.

Where to play legal online poker

Only select states offer regulated real-money poker in the US: DelawareNevadaNew Jersey and Pennsylvania.

The likes of PokerStars and World Series of Poker (WSOP) are heavy-hitters in the online poker world. So, too, is Global Poker, which prides itself on the social gaming aspect.

PokerStars stands as the largest online poker operator in the world, offering a wide array of cash games and tournaments for players in New Jersey, Nevada and Pennsylvania. Those wanting to play on the WSOP site have the option of a shared liquidity pool among players from New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware.

Global Poker, meanwhile, allows players to buy Gold Coins for for ring games and tourneys.

PokerStars online poker events

A pleasant surprise of late has been the rising popularity of online poker in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Here is the schedule for players in Pennsylvania:

No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $30
Guaranteed prize pool: $15,000

No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $250
Prize pool: $20,000

The Big
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $20
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

Sunday Storm, No Limit Texas Hold’em
Date: March 29, 5 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

The Big
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

Bounty Builder, PKO
Date: March 29, 9 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $20
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

Sunday Supersonic
Date: March 29, 10 p.m.
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

For those in New Jersey, here are the upcoming tournaments:

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 4 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 5 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $10
Guaranteed prize pool: $7,500

No Limit Texas Hold Em, deposit freeroll
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: Ticket
Guaranteed prize pool: $1,000 added

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 6 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $200
Guaranteed prize pool: $40,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 7 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $500
Guaranteed prize pool: $10,000

8-Game
Date: March 29, 8:30 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $50
Guaranteed prize pool: $1,000

No Limit Texas Hold Em
Date: March 29, 10 p.m. ET
Buy-in: $75
Guaranteed prize pool: $5,000

And with several variations of Championship of Online Poker (COOP), PokerStars has helped spearhead the uptick of online poker.

The Spring Championship of Online Poker will be the first such event in PA and feature a whopping $2 million guarantee. New Jersey, meanwhile, expects to have a $1.2 million guarantee, representing a $200,000 increase from 2019.

Those tourneys are scheduled for April 4, allowing for enough practice time.

Complete schedules for both events are expected shortly.

WSOP.com online poker events

A premier event expects to be a monumental hit during this summer’s World Series of Poker. And one last qualifying event is left for players hoping to join those tables.

The $55 March Mayhem tournaments boast a $50,000 guarantee and a seat at the Big 50 table to the winner. Players have one final opportunity to earn that seat as March Mayhem wraps up March 29.

Take solace for non-winners, however: Those players who have entered at least two tourneys receive tickets to a Big 50 Seat Freeroll, which awards five seats at the Big 50 table.

Not to be outdone, WSOP.com is looking to make up for postponed and canceled events. As part of its Online Super Series, WSOP hands out 18 WSOP Circuit rings in 18 days. One of the primetime tables: a $525 Main Event with $200,000 guaranteed.

The series goes through March 31. Here’s a look at this weekend’s events:

  • Saturday, March 28: 7 p.m. ET, $320 buy-in, $75,000 guarantee
  • Sunday, March 29: 5 p.m. ET, $525 buy-in, $200,000 guarantee

To boot, players in Nevada and New Jersey have access to daily WSOP tournaments:

  • Daily, 4 p.m. ET, $215 buy-in, $10,000 guarantee
  • Daily, 11 p.m. ET, $30 buy-in, $10,000 guarantee
  • Wednesdays, 8:30 p.m. ET, $20,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 8:30 p.m. ET, $500 buy-in, $20,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 10 p.m. ET, $250 buy-in, $15,000 guarantee
  • Thursdays, 11:30 p.m. ET, $1,000 buy-in, $20,000 guarantee

Global Poker online poker events

Like WSOP, Global Poker continues to add to its tournament schedule to help meet the demand for online poker.

On top of five-figure guarantees during the week, Global Poker offers several high-profile payouts over the weekend, including:

  • Friday Flash: SC15,000 Guaranteed
  • Saturday Swift: SC15,000 Guaranteed
  • Sunday Six: SC15,000 Guaranteed

The site has also ramped up its daily offerings including its new “NightCap” series for night time players. Here’s a look at the complete slate of new dailies:

Throughout the night, too, Global Poker features a variety of events for night owls:

  • 6 p.m. ET, SC11 buy-in, SC6,000 guaranteed
  • 6:45 p.m. ET, SC55 buy-in, SC8,500 guarantee
  • 8:00 p.m. ET, SC5.50 buy-in, SC15,000 guarantee
  • 8:30 p.m. ET, SC33 buy-in, SC20,000 guarantee
  • 10 p.m. ET, SC55 buy-in, SC10,000 guarantee
  • 11 p.m. ET, SC11 buy-in, SC5,000 guarantee
  • Midnight ET, SC21.50 buy-in, SC3,000 guarantee
  • 12:30 a.m. ET, SC22 buy-in, SC2,000 guarantee
  • 1 a.m. ET, SC21.40 buy-in, SC2,000 guarantee
  • 1:30 a.m. ET, SC21.40 buy-in, SC1,500 guarantee

Finally, Global Poker strengthened its weekend schedule with the addition of a deepstack event featuring SC1,500 guarantee. Those tourneys begin each Sunday at 4:15 p.m. ET.

In addition, Global padded its Saturday schedule of events:

  • SC11 buy-in, 3 p.m. ET, SC3,000 guaranteed
  • SC22 buy-in, 4:15 p.m. ET, SC6,000 guaranteed
  • SC55 buy-in, 5:30 p.m. ET, SC12,000 guaranteed

Finally, several satellite tourneys will run earlier in the day each Saturday, awarding seats to the major events:

  • SC2.20 buy-in, 2:20 p.m. ET, 12 seats guaranteed
  • SC3.21 buy-in, 2:50 p.m. ET, 10 seats guaranteed
  • SC3.30 buy-in, 3:20 p.m. ET, 8 seats guaranteed
  • SC5.30 buy-in, 4:05 p.m. ET, 10 seats guaranteed

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Illinois Sports Betting Kicks Off March 9 At This Casino Sportsbook

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The moment many thought would never come is finally arriving: Illinois sports betting has a start date.

Rivers Casino in Des Plaines announced the BetRivers Sportsbook will open Monday, March 9 at noon. This will mark the first brick-and-mortar sportsbook in the state following a long and rocky path to legalization.

“The BetRivers Sportsbook will take March Madness out of the office pool and into an exciting, elevated live sports wagering experience,” said Corey Wise, senior vice president and general manager of Rivers Casino. “We are grateful to the Illinois Gaming Board staff for their work approving our sportsbook in time for the college basketball tournament—one of the greatest sports events of the year.”

Greg Carlin, CEO and co-founder of Rush Street Gaming, Rivers parent company had this to say:

“Whether you are a seasoned sportsbook player or a casual sports fan interested in this new entertainment option, we’re dedicated to an environment where all customers will enjoy themselves in this great venue within our premier casino.”

What to expect at BetRivers Sportsbook

According to the release, the sportsbook will feature a number of amenities including:

  • 4,840 square foot sports bar
  • 47-foot-wide Ultra HD LED video wall
  • 10 86-inch HD televisions
  • 4 75-inch HD television
  • 5 betting windows
  • 30 sportsbook kiosk
  • 1 full-service island bar with 32 seats
  • 26 bar-top video poker machines
  • 29 leather lounge chairs with additional table seating

“BetRivers Sportsbook meets the high bar established by the team at Rivers Casino Des Plaines as one of the most successful and unique regional gaming destinations in the country,” said Bill Carstanjen, CEO of Churchill Downs Incorporated, the racing, online wagering and gaming entertainment company which co-owns Rivers. “We’re excited to add this top-flight amenity to what is already a premier destination.”

What about mobile wagering and who’s next?

Unfortunately for those traveling outside the Chicago land area, mobile sports betting will not be available until later this year.

Many experts anticipated the start of the NCAA Basketball tournament would be the defacto launch date. With Rivers launching Monday, March Madness betting will be in full swing.

Additionally, the Illinois Gaming Board has announced a number of temporary permits in the past few days so there are several properties that might follow Rivers lead.

Argosy Casino Alton, owned by Penn National Gaming and Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin, owned by Eldorado, are the most likely to launch next.

Other casinos receiving temporary permits are:

  • Hollywood Casinos in Aurora and Joliet
  • Par-A-Dice Hotel and Casino in Peoria

For those looking for alternative options traveling from the southern part of Illinois, Horseshoe Casino and Ameristar Casino in Hammond, Indiana, each have full-service sportsbooks.

Expect fierce competition for gambling dollars between Illinois and Indiana once the Prairie State is completely up and running. Also, don’t forget about the Wolverine State which recently announced Michigan sports betting will commence on Wednesday, March 11.

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What To Know Ahead Of March Madness

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Rest assured, sports betting is coming to Michigan, and it’s coming sooner than you think.

The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) recently announced that on Tuesday it expects to give final approval for sports betting at the three commercial casinos in downtown Detroit.

With approval, sports betting is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, March 11.

“With just 11 weeks to prepare, MGCB staff worked hard to make the launch of onsite sports betting at the Detroit commercial casinos possible,” said Richard S. Kalm, MGCB executive director.

A spokesperson with BetMGM confirmed they expect to start taking bets immediately at MGM Grand Detroit. It’s unknown if Detroit’s other two casinos, Greektown and Motor City will launch on Wednesday.

As a casual or expert bettor, you may have a few questions such as:

  • When will I be able to begin placing bets?
  • What will sports betting look like in Michigan?
  • Can I place bets using my smartphone or computer?

The staff here at PlayUSA has curated as much information as possible about Michigan sports betting, and we want to share it with you.

The basics of Michigan sports betting

Michigan became the 20th state to pass a sports betting bill with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s signature in December 2019. The bill authorizes sports betting at the state’s three commercial casinos in downtown Detroit.

  • Greektown Casino + Penn National
  • MGM Grand/GVC + Roar Digital
  • Motor City Casino + FanDuel Sportsbook

The 24 tribal casinos will also be permitted to offer sports betting. However, since they are not regulated by the MGCB it’s very hard to speculate when they will launch. Experts have anticipated tribal casinos will most likely beat commercial facilities to launch but that has yet to be seen.

When will Michigan sports betting launch?

Regulators originally anticipated the start of the NCAA Basketball Tournament as a viable launch date. But now it appears that the timeline has moved to Wednesday, March 11.

March Madness, which begins March 17, is obviously one of the annual peak periods for US betting, along with the Super Bowl and start of NFL season. The basketball frenzy is a big opportunity to start MI sports betting with a bang, which means a lot of potential revenue from March Madness betting.

What can we expect MI betting to look like?

Sports betting will operate a lot like it does in places like New Jersey, Nevada, and Indiana. Operations will begin with retail sportsbooks only, then gradually introduce mobile wagering at a later date.

Regulators in Michigan have stated they want to take their time when developing rules and regulations for mobile wagering and have an expected target date of 2021. So in the meantime, you will not be able to place bets online or via a smartphone.

It’s expected that casino properties will have a designated sportsbook lounge or area complete with TVs, seating and betting counters where customers wait in line to place bets. MGM Grand recently completed construction on a $7 million “sports lounge” complete with numerous amenities including self-serve betting kiosks.

If you’re looking for what things could look like, Horsehoe Casino and Ameristar Casino in Hammond, IN, can provide you with a good visual.

Tribal gaming partnerships

Thus far, there are only three sports betting/tribal gaming partnerships.

  • PointsBet + Northern Waters Casino Resort, operated by the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians.
  • The Star Group/ Fox Bet + Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians.
  • William Hill + the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians

William Hill will operate sports betting at the Onyx Sports Bar at Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel and a satellite location at Leelanau Sands Casino. Both locations are expected to be open by the start of the 2020 football season.

With 24 tribal casinos spread across the state, there are surely more partnerships to come.

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Why It Looks Like Montana Sports Betting Will Launch In Time For March Madness

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The terminals are packed up. They’re powered up, in essence. Within days, drivers will begin delivering them to more than 150 locations throughout the state.

Get ready, Montana. Potentially within a week, legalized sports betting will kick off in Big Sky Country, courtesy of Sports Bet Montana.

“There’s a robust gambling market already in Montana,” said Jennifer McKee, communications manager for the Montana Lottery. Powered by Intralot, sports betting in the state will be overseen by the lottery.

“Mostly what we’ve heard from people is why (sports betting) isn’t already up and running. It’s almost unilateral excitement and people really want it to be out right now.”

Fear not, Treasure Staters: Sports Bet Montana is in its final stages of preparation. And just in time for March Madness.

Sports betting terminals ready for delivery in Montana

After some delays, Montana sports betting is about to kick into overdrive.

Within the past few weeks, the Montana Lottery Commission approved bet types and sports, the lottery installed “communication beacons” at locations that will house betting terminals, and the lottery readied said terminals for delivery, which begins March 9.

Theoretically, within two weeks, Montana sports betting could be operational.

“The limiting factor for us is just the size of the state of Montana,” McKee said. “We’re going to be delivering equipment as quickly as possible and getting as many installed as possible.”

Not only does Montana’s size affect the speed at which the lottery can fulfill deliveries, so, too, does the over 150 locations that have signed up to host betting terminals.

Hope is for little lag time after deliveries

As McKee emphasized, the betting terminals will already be functioning before the lottery even delivers them.

“But because this is a completely new activity,” she added, “they’ll be delivered and very soon after that there will be a lottery crew training on how the equipment works.”

Once again citing the sheer size of Montana (it is the fourth-largest by area in the US), as well as the number of locations expecting deliveries, McKee could not provide a built-in timeline for when sports betting will launch. But the anticipation, she said, is “very soon.”

“We didn’t want to do an all-at-once launch, just because of the geographic concerns,” McKee said. “It can take so long, we didn’t want to have dark terminals.”

What Montana sports betting will offer

The upside for bettors: Montana will accept wagers on professional and college sports. On top of that, Montana university athletics are also in play.

From basketball to baseball, football to hockey, soccer to tennis, golf to boxing, and MMA to motor sports, Sports Bet Montana will have a decent variety of betting offerings.

That said, the lottery has instituted betting limits for those placing wagers both at kiosks and via the Sports Bet Montana app and website.

Gamblers at terminals cannot bet more than $250, while mobile wagers will be capped at $1,000. This is part of the lottery’s ongoing pursuit to “contribute to the common good” of Montana gaming, as McKee put it. With these limits, sports betting operates under a more controlled environment.

So, too, is the lottery’s decision pertaining to mobile wagering.

Montana sports betting goes mobile… kind of

In a sense, Montana will offer online sports betting via the Sports Bet Montana app and website.

But bettors will only have access to these mobile options within establishments that house betting terminals. These sites feature “communication beacons” that interact with the Sports Bet Montana app and website.

At the door of each location, however, exists “null-beacons” that prevent the signal from getting outside.

Already, McKee said, more than 70 locations have been outfitted with communication beacons.

Pending lawsuit will not delay Montana sports betting

Several months after HB 725 passed to legalize sports betting in the state, the Montana Lottery included an addendum that required businesses to possess a specific alcohol license in order to be qualified to offer regulated wagering.

As the legislature didn’t initially require such a stipulation, a lawsuit was filed against the lottery. Not only did the plaintiff request it be awarded a sports wagering license despite not owning an alcohol license, it also asked for the court to issue a restraining order until a ruling is made.

While McKee could not comment on the lawsuit, as it remains pending, the request for an injunction was denied.

Despite the pending lawsuit, Montana sports betting chugs along.

What kind of future does Montana sports betting have?

Excitement abounds for regulated wagering in the Treasure State, at least from McKee’s perspective — and not only from businesses that will house terminals, but also from the public.

Even the state’s colleges have expressed support, according to McKee. (Interview requests to several universities either went unreturned or were denied.)

“We’ve worked with the Commissioner of Higher Education here,” McKee said. “Part of our system is colleges and universities have their own standards for who can and who can’t bet. So what we’ve done to help them, and to help anyone who wants assistance with not gambling, is you can go into our system and put yourself on a self-exclusion list.”

McKee noted that several athletic directors in the state raised “very legitimate questions” about how the Montana Lottery would be able to control sports betting. Already, the lottery has displayed the controlled environment it has created: betting terminals at select locations, communication beacons to allow for mobile wagering within these establishments, and limits on how much bettors can wager.

While over 150 businesses are licensed to host betting terminals, upwards of 1,400 locations are eligible to offer regulated sports betting. That, combined with Montana’s hunger for gambling, should make the state’s sports betting industry relatively successful, per McKee.

“From our perspective as the lottery,” she said, “we’re really focused on putting out a product that people will really enjoy and make it successful.”

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Why Illinois Sports Betting Has A 50/50 Shot For A March Launch Date

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The excitement surrounding Illinois sports betting and when it will make its official debut is causing a frenzy amongst casual and expert bettors.

I’d imagine fans of the New Orleans Pelicans had a similar feeling waiting patiently for first-round draft pick Zion Williams to step on the hardwood. But with something so delicate, like Zion and sports betting, you must proceed with caution.

So while three casinos have been granted temporary operating permits, this doesn’t mean sports betting has finally arrived. However, it does mean the necessary steps are being taken to ensure these properties can be the first to begin receiving wagers once the green light is given.

Let the madness begin

March has been designated as the target date for sports betting to launch.

But is it conceivable?

Cory Aronovitz, a seasoned gaming attorney with Casino Law Group in Chicago, IL, is optimistic sports betting can launch in March because these gaming operators have done this in other jurisdictions.

“Managing expectations is crucial, and there is a demand for the product. So, target dates with contingencies are appropriate,” Aronovitz said in an email.

The likely three casinos to launch first are:

  • Argosy Casino Alton – Penn National
  • Grand Victoria Casino Elgin – Eldorado
  • Rivers Casino Des Plaines – Rivers

“These properties all have sports wagering experience, and aside from tweaks for unique aspects of Illinois regulations, the software has been vetted and utilized in other markets,” Aronovitz said.

Other experts on the subject of Illinois sports betting

Tom Swoik, executive director of the Illinois Casino Gaming Association, told Legal Sports Report, “I think you’ll see something up and running before March Madness, at least at these three facilities.”

Sure, it’s possible casinos can be up and running in time for the big dance, but there are still miles of red tape to go through. Properties still need to complete rigorous testing on internal control systems, betting software, and other compliance operations outlined by the emergency rules. That doesn’t happen overnight.

But it appears all the work rests in the hands of the casinos.

According to Joe Miller, director of policy at the Illinois Gaming Board (IGB), “we’ve given them the tools, and now they can finish the job.”

“It’s on [the casinos] on how fast they want to go to become compliant with the rules and offer sports wagering to their customers,” Miller told LSR.

More gambling, more gambling dollars

Illinois is no stranger to milking gambling dollars from its residents.

The state already has more video gaming terminals (VGT)  than Las Vegas 385,945 to be exact. In 2019, Illinois collected $444,384,459 in taxes from gaming terminals. Municipalities collected a combined $83,833,498, according to a report from the IGB.

The addition of sports betting will only solidity the state as a gambling powerhouse not only in the Midwest but in the country. According to some estimates, the state could record an annual sports betting handle of $5.3 billion by 2023.

To say that IL residents are hungry for sports betting would be an understatement. Residents have been bolting across the border into Indiana to hand over wads of cash in order to place bets. Only time will tell if they can empty their pockets at local casinos in time for March Madness.

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Gambling News

Why Illinois Sports Betting Has A 50/50 Shot For A March Launch Date

[ad_1]

The excitement surrounding Illinois sports betting and when it will make its official debut is causing a frenzy amongst casual and expert bettors.

I’d imagine fans of the New Orleans Pelicans had a similar feeling waiting patiently for first-round draft pick Zion Williams to step on the hardwood. But with something so delicate, like Zion and sports betting, you must proceed with caution.

So while three casinos have been granted temporary operating permits, this doesn’t mean sports betting has finally arrived. However, it does mean the necessary steps are being taken to ensure these properties can be the first to begin receiving wagers once the green light is given.

Let the madness begin

March has been designated as the target date for sports betting to launch.

But is it conceivable?

Cory Aronovitz, a seasoned gaming attorney with Casino Law Group in Chicago, IL, is optimistic sports betting can launch in March because these gaming operators have done this in other jurisdictions.

“Managing expectations is crucial, and there is a demand for the product. So, target dates with contingencies are appropriate,” Aronovitz said in an email.

The likely three casinos to launch first are:

  • Argosy Casino Alton – Penn National
  • Grand Victoria Casino Elgin – Eldorado
  • Rivers Casino Des Plaines – Rivers

“These properties all have sports wagering experience, and aside from tweaks for unique aspects of Illinois regulations, the software has been vetted and utilized in other markets,” Aronovitz said.

Other experts on the subject of Illinois sports betting

Tom Swoik, executive director of the Illinois Casino Gaming Association, told Legal Sports Report, “I think you’ll see something up and running before March Madness, at least at these three facilities.”

Sure, it’s possible casinos can be up and running in time for the big dance, but there are still miles of red tape to go through. Properties still need to complete rigorous testing on internal control systems, betting software, and other compliance operations outlined by the emergency rules. That doesn’t happen overnight.

But it appears all the work rests in the hands of the casinos.

According to Joe Miller, director of policy at the Illinois Gaming Board (IGB), “we’ve given them the tools, and now they can finish the job.”

“It’s on [the casinos] on how fast they want to go to become compliant with the rules and offer sports wagering to their customers,” Miller told LSR.

More gambling, more gambling dollars

Illinois is no stranger to milking gambling dollars from its residents.

The state already has more video gaming terminals (VGT)  than Las Vegas 385,945 to be exact. In 2019, Illinois collected $444,384,459 in taxes from gaming terminals. Municipalities collected a combined $83,833,498, according to a report from the IGB.

The addition of sports betting will only solidity the state as a gambling powerhouse not only in the Midwest but in the country. According to some estimates, the state could record an annual sports betting handle of $5.3 billion by 2023.

To say that IL residents are hungry for sports betting would be an understatement. Residents have been bolting across the border into Indiana to hand over wads of cash in order to place bets. Only time will tell if they can empty their pockets at local casinos in time for March Madness.

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