NBA, MGM Resorts Sign Multiyear Sports Gambling Deal

by Samuel Abasi Posted on August 1st, 2018

New York and Las Vegas :  MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) and the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced today a new multi-year partnership that will make MGM Resorts the official gaming partner of the NBA and WNBA.  The announcement was made this afternoon by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and MGM Resorts International Chairman & CEO Jim Murren in New York City.

This historic partnership will bring millions of NBA fans and MGM Resorts guests together through an innovative collaboration that will open new and exciting opportunities to engage with each other’s world-class brands and products.  The partnership is the NBA’s first with a sports betting operator in the U.S. and is the first of its kind between MGM Resorts and a major professional sports league.

As part of the partnership, MGM Resorts will use official NBA and WNBA data and branding, on a non-exclusive basis, across MGM Resorts’ land-based and digital sports betting offerings throughout the United States.

“As the landscape for sports betting in the U.S. continues to evolve at a rapid pace, MGM Resorts is a proven gaming leader for us to work with on this groundbreaking partnership,” said Silver.  “Our collaboration will result in the best possible gaming and entertainment experience for consumers through the use of accurate, real-time NBA and WNBA data, and our collective efforts to maintain and enhance the integrity of our games.”

“The NBA has always been an innovator at the forefront of sports evolution, and MGM Resorts is thrilled to partner with the league to revolutionize sports betting in the United States,” said Murren.  “Integrating the NBA’s assets and having official NBA data showcased across the MGM Resorts platforms will provide us with a distinct advantage and instill more confidence in knowing that our data is directly from the NBA.”

MGM Resorts and the NBA will also partner on best-in-class practices to protect the integrity of NBA and WNBA games, including anonymized real-time data sharing.

The NBA and MGM Resorts will also work together to create a series of integrations across NBA platforms, including a special digital content series.

MGM Resorts will be promoted across the NBA’s digital assets including NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA social media platforms.  Additionally, the NBA will be promoted across MGM Resorts’ sports betting platforms.

The sports betting partnership is the NBA and WNBA’s latest collaboration with MGM Resorts.  In 2017, MGM Resorts purchased the WNBA’s Las Vegas Aces after receiving unanimous approval from the WNBA and NBA Board of Governors.  The Aces are Las Vegas’ first professional basketball team and play their home games at MGM Resorts’ Mandalay Bay Events Center.

Additionally, MGM Resorts has been the title partner of the MGM Resorts NBA Summer League the last two years.

What did MGM get?

MGM gets the rights to NBA league and team logos, highlights, access to the official league data feed and the tag of being the “official gaming partner” of the NBA and WNBA.

What’s in it for the NBA?

The deal, according to sources, is believed to be $25 million over three years. That’s small change for the NBA. The value, though, may come through the creation of a market for their direct data feed. Now that MGM has signed up, other competitors have a decision to make: Is the access to data that the NBA is offering worth it?

What is the advantage of having the NBA’s direct data feed?

There are varying opinions on how valuable the NBA’s direct feed really is for the bookmaking business. Nevada sportsbooks aren’t using the NBA’s feed now and don’t seem to be running into any issues. However, the NBA believes the reliability and speed of the feed will become increasingly valuable in the future, especially for in-game betting, which is expected to take off in the U.S.

Will you be able to bet on the NBA at non-MGM sportsbooks?

Yes. The only thing that is exclusive about the deal is that MGM now has the right to market itself as the official gaming partner of the NBA and WNBA.

Author

Samuel Abasi

Samuel Abasi

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