MGM Resorts International will now get official data shared by the National Basketball Association (NBA) and Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) as the pro basketball leagues prepare for the projected expansion of sports betting throughout the United States.
The casino giant based in Las Vegas will secure crucial NBA data that will be used in their sports betting product to calculate the outcomes of different bets.
The NBA which was once opposed to the legalization of sports betting in the United States was happy to sign a deal with MGM Resorts as the NBA wanted MGM Sportsbooks to provide their basketball bettors with accurate and real time data that will enable them to have accurate knowledge of the games and odds they bet on.
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This ‘Gaming Partner’ deal involving MGM Resorts and the NBA is the first time a casino operator has paid the basketball league for such statistics. This is also the first time such a deal between a casino and major US sports league has been made. The agreement was announced Tuesday but the terms of the partnership was not revealed only that it was only divulged that it is a multi-year deal.
James Murren, CEO of MGM Resorts was willing to pay the NBA money for their data as he said it was vital that MGM sportsbooks be able to provide accurate NBA statistics for sports bettors throughout the world. No information has been released as to how the NBA will provide MGM Resorts with the required data as of now.
The partnership will also require the NBA to advertise the MGM brand across multiple NBA products including the NBA App, NBA TV and NBA.com while MGM will promote the NBA brand via its land-based and digital sports betting offerings.
NBA Happy To Get Commission On Sports Betting
The NBA along with other major sporting leagues such as the NFL, NHL and MLB opposed sports betting legalization for a number of years. Once the Supreme Court overturned the PASPA 1992 law that banned sports betting, as many as 20 states across the country rushed to pass sports betting bills to legalize the industry.
The NBA decided that it was better to stop opposing sports betting and instead work together with casino operators in order to see how the league can benefit from sports betting. The NBA and MGM Resorts held detailed discussions for a number of weeks before they were able to work out a mutual agreement.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver signed a multi-year deal with MGM Resorts which will give both parties time to see how their partnership in working out, whether bettors are benefitting from the data shared and if the two companies wanted to extend their partnership going forward.
In a statement, Silver said
We understood the value of our marks, of official designations. But I think then in terms of the data we’re providing, we have a sense of the magnitude of the current business and a sense of where things may go over the next few years. And I’d say we generally tried to approximate in a sense to come up with what we thought was fair compensation
This is not the first time NBA and MGM have teamed up. MGM owns the Las Vegas Aces in the WNBA, which play at the Mandalay Bay casino. MGM is also one of the presenters of the NBA Summer League.
NBA Could Form Partnerships With Other Providers
While MGM Resorts will benefit from this deal with the NBA, the deal does not give MGM Resorts exclusive rights over the data. This means that the NBA is free to sign similar deals with other casino operators who are offering sports betting services. Basketball is one of the most popular sports in America and just about every sportsbook will offer basketball bets.
This would allow the NBA to sign up with multiple casino providers and create another stream of revenue for the league.
The American Gaming Association (AGA) said it was pleased to see MGM Resorts and the NBA enter a partnership agreement and believed that this would be the first of many agreements between sports leagues and casino operators.