The selection of sportsbooks operating in Atlantic City will soon double, as Caesars Entertainment will open bet shops within its Bally’s and Harrah’s casinos there this week.
The sportsbook at Bally’s AC began taking bets on July 30, while the Harrah’s Atlantic City venue launched on August 1. Bettors visiting either venue will place wagers through temporary facilities for the time being, but Caesars announced that a nine-month renovation would be undertaken to
“create the same world-class sports betting experiences currently available at its properties in Nevada.”
Bally’s and Harrah’s will join the MGM Resorts-owned Borgata and the independently owned Oceans Resort as the only locations in Atlantic City currently operating sportsbooks.
As of now, Caesars Entertainment has not revealed any plans to operate a sportsbook within its flagship Caesars Atlantic City property.
Caesars is also planning to open a pair of sportsbooks in Mississippi, which recently finalized regulations pertaining to a 2017 law allowing sports wagers. The Harrah’s Gulf Coast in Biloxi and Horseshoe Tunica sportsbooks are both scheduled to open in “mid-August,” per a press release issued by Caesars.
In that press release, Mark Frissora – who serves as president and chief executive officer of Caesars Entertainment – outlined the company’s intentions to capitalize on the repeal of a 26-year old federal sports betting ban this May:
“The recent Supreme Court ruling allows us to expand our sports betting digital and mobile offerings into new markets.
We recognize that our customers expect exciting new experiences, which is why we will continue to offer new products through our mobile and digital platforms and inside our properties.”
Caesars is also set to launch online sports betting in the Garden State, where online gambling has been legal since 2013. Wagering on sports via the internet was legalized this year along with traditional brick and mortar sportsbooks.
Visitors to the CaesarsCasino.com site will find a banner ad proclaiming that “sports wagering is coming” to the site. And while no dates have been announced for the launch of Caesars’ mobile sports betting platform, the banner ad informs users that they’ll be alerted when wagering goes live.
Caesars has partnered with Scientific Games – a leading provider of iGaming software and backend technology based in Las Vegas – to power the new mobile betting platform.
Barry Cottle – who serves as president and chief executive officer for Scientific Games – issued the following statement outlining the partnership:
“We’re thrilled to partner with Caesars to help them bring best-in-class sports wagering experiences to their players.
With OpenBet, our powerful and robust sportsbook platform, Caesars will have a truly open platform and end-to-end product suite that delivers the very best and flexible solutions and has proven success managing the largest share of the world’s online bets, more than 2 billion online bets annually.
Our SG Digital team is excited to help Caesars stay ahead of the game, as they work to expand their sports betting, digital and mobile offerings into newly regulated markets.”
As for the possibility of launching mobile sportsbooks connected to its Mississippi properties, the Caesars statement clarified that the company “plans to introduce the mobile application in additional states when and if it becomes legal and economically attractive for Caesars to do so.”
The rush to open and operate sportsbooks in states outside of Nevada officially began on May 14, when the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling in the case of Murphy vs. NCAA. That case concerned New Jersey’s repeated efforts to legalize and regulate sportsbooks in the state.
When the Court ruled 6-3 in New Jersey’s favor – finding the federal sports betting ban known as the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) of 1992 to be unconstitutional – individual states were free to follow New Jersey’s lead.