Barstool Sports Becomes Arizona Bowl Title Sponsor and Broadcast Partner

College Football Player Next to Money and Sportsbook Board

Barstool Sports will be joining the college football scene by becoming the exclusive title sponsor and broadcast partner of the Arizona Bowl. Scheduled for December 31st, this year’s Arizona Bowl coverage will move from the traditional TV coverage by CBS to online viewing via Barstool Sports’ website, mobile app, and social media channels.

Said Barstool CEO Erika Nardini in an interview:

“We really believe that what we can do is take the best of traditional broadcast and take the best of traditional sponsorship and do both in a brand new way. We think we’ll bring new fans. We know we will bring a level of energy, and we’ll cover the game in a way that is completely unique, and uniquely Barstool.”

Not the Original Intention

With this deal, Barstool Sports will be broadcasting a college football game for the first time ever, although that was not the company’s original intention. According to Nardini, the initial conversations were about straight sponsorship but eventually, it included discussion on distribution “by virtue of that sponsorship”.

The deal was facilitated by sponsorship agency Impression Sports, a Playfly Sports company. Impression Sports also brokered title sponsorship deals for other postseason college football games including the Union Home Mortgage Gasparilla Bowl, Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl, and the Cheez-it Bowl which was formerly the Tangerine Bowl.

Emphasis on Collegiate Sports

Barstool Sports has put an emphasis on collegiate sports this year. Last spring, they organized the “Let Them Play” Classic in Chandler, Arizona after the NCAA women’s golf regional was canceled. They also launched Barstool Athletics Inc. recently to partner with hundreds of NCAA athletes as ambassadors in the wake of the NIL.

The Arizona Bowl was first played in 2015 and last year, it involved teams from the Mountain West and Mid-American Conferences. It is played annually at the University of Arizona stadium and is owned and operated by Tucson-based non-profit TD4Tucson, which donates 100% of net proceeds to charity. With the Barstool Sportsbook expected to launch in Arizona this fall, getting involved in the Arizona Bowl was a good move.

Cliff Castle Casino Partners With PointsBet for Entry in Arizona Sports Betting Industry

Arizona State Flag and an Arizona Casino

Arizona’s Cliff Casino Hotel has entered into a partnership with online gaming operator PointsBet for entry in the state’s newly legalized sports betting industry.

Under the deal, the two parties will work to seek a license to operate online sports betting in Arizona’s newly regulated market.

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed the Arizona sports betting bill into a law in April, paving the way for up to 20 sportsbooks to operate in the state with professional sports teams and tribal casinos eligible to apply for a license. So far, six partnerships have been formed in an industry that is expected to launch on September 9th to coincide with the start of the NFL season. Now AZ has its 7th player in Cliff Castle Casino and Points Bet.

Said Aaron Moss, general manager of Cliff Castle Casino:

“Cliff Castle Casino Hotel and PointsBet are excited to partner and initiate our process of offering event wagering in the state of Arizona. PointsBet’s experience and reputation have made them a perfect fit in pursuit of an event wagering license. This partnership allows for Cliff Castle to work alongside PointsBet’s truly first-class brand and product, which we are thrilled to ultimately help make available to the Arizona market.”

10-Year Market Access Deal

According to reports, the agreements is for a 10-year market access deal to legal Arizona sports betting. Under the deal, PointsBet will pay a fixed fee of $850,000 as initial license fee. The Arizona sports betting bill also calls for an 8% tax rate on retail wagers and 10% of net gaming revenue online sports bets.

PointsBet will also help fund a branded sportsbook inside the Cliff Castle Casino Hotel which will be operated by the Yavapai-Apache nation. The online gaming operators has also agreed to make an annual donation to a public interest fund designated by the Yavapi Apache Nation that benefits the youth of the tribe.

The Arizona market represents the 16th state in which the fast-growing online sports betting operator has presence in. PointsBet also plans to utilize its partnership with NBC sports to help promote the brand in their latest market.

Exclusive Sports Betting Partner of NBC

As the exclusive sports betting partner of NBC, PointsBet will make use of the network’s TV and digital assets to help promote the PointsBet brand in the new market.

As part of their agreement, NBC Sports will provide PointsBet with a year-round multi-platform media and marketing opportunities across its portfolio of sporting events, including exclusive gameday integrations across NBC’s regional sports networks.

With a full Spanish language functionality, PointsBet will also be able to reach Hispanic sports fans via Telemundo Deportes and Telemundo broadcast stations.

Another Casino in Phoenix Will Open its Doors in the Next Few Years

Phoenix AZ

Arizona is home to one of the largest casino industries in the Western United States. Incredibly, this industry continues to expand on a regular basis. New reports indicate that a new casino in Phoenix will be opening its doors sometime over the next two years.

Casino fans in the area have reason to be excited. Today, we’ll discuss the details of this new gambling venue. We will also take a look at how Arizona’s gambling industry has been faring throughout 2021.

Here’s what you need to know!

More States Have Recently Welcomed Incredible New Casinos

Regulated casino gambling has been available in the United States for decades. There was a time when only Las Vegas was considered a true gaming hub. That is no longer the case and a huge number of states are now home to a huge number of world-class casinos.

Several states have recently welcomed impressive new gambling properties. Many leaders recognize how effective these venues can be at attracting tourism. They also tend to generate a massive amount of tax revenue for different areas of the country.

Perhaps the most obvious example of this is Las Vegas, which recently welcomed the brand-new Resorts World Las Vegas. At $4.3 billion, this is the most expensive resort ever built in the city. It held a grand opening on June 24 and reports claim this was a major success with thousands of guests attending the opening ceremony.

Atlantic City has also welcomed an exciting new property in 2018 when the Ocean Casino-Resort took the place of the former Revel Resort. Initially, this venue struggled to generate much interest from tourists. Things have turned around in recent years, however, and this property is now the third-most successful venue in the city.

The US casino industry has turned around in a massive way when compared to 2020. There was a time when all major casinos were closed around the country. Most states have now lifted nearly all of the restrictions set on this venue in early last year.

Arizona continues to expand its own casino industry. It’s here that a massive number of popular tribal casinos are located. New reports indicate a brand new casino will soon be opening its doors in the Phoenix area of the state.

Sources Confirm That a New Casino in Phoenix Will Open Soon

The state of Arizona is known for having a large and successful gaming industry. Recently, lawmakers here approved a new set of measures to expand the list of gaming options available here. That took place in April when Governor Ducey approved a new compact that allows both sports betting and additional casinos.

This new compact allows tribal groups in the state to operate thousands of new casinos and four news casinos. That includes two in the Phoenix area. New reports have surfaced this week that another casino in Phoenix will open its doors sometime in the next one or two years.

The new casino in Phoenix will be run by the Gila River Indian Community and will be given permission to offer all of the news games approved in the recent contract. This gaming venue will also be allowed to offer its guests sports betting. It is expected to cost more than $100 million and will also include a hotel.

Gila River Indian Community Governor Stephen Roe Lewis released a statement on this new property to the media this week.

“Adding a 4th casino will bring additional revenue, security, and critical services to Community members. In addition, we anticipate being able to add hundreds of new jobs that Community members can take advantage of, and we expect that many of those will be filled by Community members,” Roe said. 

This property will open its doors near Chandler. Once opened, it should be able to employ over 1,000 individuals. Many believe this venue will help to significantly boost tourism rates in the Phoenix area. We’ll be sure to offer more updates on this property over the next few years!

Arizona’s Sports Betting Industry is Expected to Go Live This September

The US sports betting industry began to expand significantly after May of 2018 when the US Supreme Court decided to strike down PASPA. This proved to be a massive deal for the country’s entire gambling industry. More than 30 states across the country now have a regulated sports betting industry set in place.

Lawmakers in Arizona have been working hard to legalize sports betting for many years. It hasn’t been easy, though. Lawmakers have been forced to come up with an agreement with various tribal groups in the state who hold a monopoly over the gaming industry.

As mentioned earlier, Governor Ducey agreed to a new gaming compact in April that formally approved sports betting in the state. Of course, getting any sportsbooks operational here has proven extremely difficult. Lawmakers still need to come up with specific agreements with these tribal groups to launch sports gambling.

There seems to be some real progress being made, though. The current plan is for the state’s first sportsbooks to launch on September 9 of 2021. The Arizona Department of Gaming has released a set of guidelines to get things moving and recently wrapped up its public comments section to hear what local residents have to say about the industry.

There is clearly a lot happening here with Arizona’s entire gambling industry. Sports betting should become available here within a few months. If all goes according to plan, a new casino in Phoenix will open its doors within a year or two, as well.

Are you excited to hear about the new casino opening up near Chandler? Let us know in the comments section below!

Arizona Department of Gaming Working to Meet Fall Launch of Sports Betting

Arizona State Seal With a Casino Hotel Background
Arizona sports betting became legal last April, when Gov. Doug Ducey signed HB 2772 into a law. But it won’t be operational until the Arizona Department of Gaming can formulate and finalize the rules and regulations governing Arizona sports betting.

With state leaders wanting to launch Arizona sports betting by the time the NFL’s 2021 season starts, the Department of Gaming is working double-time in formulating the rules.

Said Max Hartgraves, public information officer of the Arizona Department of Gaming:

“We do need to set up a whole new regulatory structure and develop these rules. So, we are on a pretty tight timetable. Luckily, we do have that emergency clause, so we’re able to kind of expedite that rule-making process. But, just putting that whole regulatory structure in place, because this form of gaming has never been legal in the state.”

20 Licenses Have Been Issued

So far, a total of 20 Arizona sports betting licenses have been issued. 10 of these were given to Arizona tribal casinos while the other 10 were awarded to Arizona professional sports teams. Positioning has been quick with sports betting companies partnering with different sports teams in recent months.

The Arizona Diamondbacks of the MLB have partnered with Caesars Entertainment to build a retail sportsbook in the plaza adjacent to Chase Field and will launch their mobile sports betting app. The NBA’s Phoenix Suns will team up with FanDuel to bring a sportsbook to the Phoenix Suns Arena. Meanwhile, golf’s TPC Scottsdale has paired with DraftKings for the establishment of a sportsbook at its facility.

Approval by Bureau of Indian Affairs

Last month, the Interior Department’s Bureau of Indian Affairs gave the final nod for the legalization of Arizona sports betting by approving the amended tribal state gaming agreement between Gov. Ducey and the state’s tribal leaders. The tribes fought to protect their exclusive rights to most gambling in Arizona and they got that under the new agreement.

Aside from operating Arizona sports betting, the new law allows the tribal casinos to expand their gaming offerings by adding games such as baccarat and craps. They were also permitted to increase the number of slot machines while maintaining their existing offers for poker and blackjack.

Federal Government Approves Legal Arizona Sports Betting

Arizona State Flag and an Arizona Casino

The United States Department of the Interior approved on Monday an updated tribal gaming compact agreed upon last month by Gov. Doug Ducey and the state’s tribal leaders, paving way for the legalization of Arizona sports betting and online fantasy sports betting.

Said Gov. Ducey in a statement:

“Gaming creates thousands of jobs for Arizonans, it generates tax revenue that benefits key areas of our communities, and it draws visitors to our state. The tribal-state gaming compact amendment, along with its associated legislation, was the culmination of a multi-year process and I was proud to work with all the stakeholders on this historic accomplishment. The tribal-state gaming compact and its associated legislation now is officially in effect — thank you to everyone who worked to make this happen!”

Legal Gambling on Professional Sports

The approval of the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs was the last step in the legalization of Arizona sports betting. Professional teams will need to acquire state-issued licenses and set up their sports wagering operations. Backers of legal Arizona sports betting hope that everything will be ready in time for the start of the 2021 NFL season.

Under the deal, major professional sports groups will be able to offer legal Arizona sports betting on professional sports leagues like the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL. Online fantasy sports operators like DraftKings and FanDuel can “piggyback” on the approved licenses.

The deal also allows the tribes to expand their casino gambling options by adding games like craps and baccarat or increasing the number of slot machines in their properties.

Partnerships Have Started

Since the Governor and the tribes signed the new agreement, partnerships between sports organizations and sports betting companies have started. Earlier this month, the Arizona Diamondbacks and Caesars Entertainment announced a partnership to build a retail sportsbook in the plaza adjacent to Chase Field.

The NBA’s Phoenix Suns have also announced that the organization will partner with FanDuel to bring legal Arizona sportsbetting to the Phoenix Suns Arena via a retail sportsbook. The Suns say that the 6,300 square foot sportsbook is expected to be ready for the 2021-22 NBA season.

Likewise, the TPC Scottsdale which is the home of the Waste Management Phoenix Open golf tournament, revealed that it will be partnering with DraftKings to construct a sportsbook at the facility. TPC Scottsdale describe the project as a “19th hole experience” where fans can place bets all-year round.

Lawmakers Pass Arizona Online Sports Betting Bill

Arizona State Flag and an Arizona Casino
Arizona lawmakers moved companion bills, Senate Bill 1797 and House Bill 2772 through their respective chambers, and approved the House version on a 23-6 vote with one member not voting. The bill now moves to the office of Gov. Doug Ducey, who is expected to sign the bill into a law, legalizing sports and fantasy betting, as well as a keno game which will be run by the state lottery.

As Many as 20 Sports Betting Operators

Arizona’s sports betting bill allows as many as 20 sports betting operators, with the state’s Native American tribes getting 10 and its professional sports organization getting the other 10. All of them can offer online sports betting. Betting on college sports is allowed, except proposition bets. Sports betting operators will be taxed at 8% on all revenue after deducting payouts to bettors.

Under the bill, the Arizona Department of Gaming can license fantasy sports operators, who will be allowed to take online bets. With fantasy sports, gamblers can select virtual teams made up of actual players in recognized sports and place bets on them.

The Arizona Cardinals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Coyotes, Phoenix Suns, TPC Scottsdale of the PGA Tour’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, and Phoenix Raceway which houses annual NASCAR and Indycar events will be permitted to partner with an online operator. Each team could also open a retail sportsbook at their venue or at a nearby property.

Amendments to Gaming Compacts With Tribes

With the passing of the bill, Gov. Ducey is also expected to sign amendments to the gaming compacts with the state’s Native American tribes. Currently, these tribal gaming properties only offer card games such as poker and blackjack. The amendment will allow them to expand offering to include new games such as baccarat, craps, and roulette.

These amendments and the Governor’s decision to allow them to expand to an unspecified number of new casinos in Metro Phoenix helped win their support for the sports betting bill, causing them to lobby on its behalf throughout the legislative process.

Assuming thar Gov. Ducey signs the bill this week, lawmakers expect legal Arizona sports betting to commence before the start of the 2021 NFL season. The Arizona Department of Gaming still has to approve the rules and hand out licenses, which has taken between three to 18 months in other states.

Sports Betting Proposal Advances in Arizona House Panel

Arizona State Flag and an Arizona Casino
An Arizona House panel advanced a proposal that would permit legal betting on professional and collegiate sports at tribal casinos and venues owned by professional sports teams after hearing from the tribes and teams that back the deal that Gov Doug Ducey made with the tribes.

The proposal, authored by Rep. Jeff Weninger, would allow professional sports teams and tribes with existing casinos to conduct legal Arizona sports betting operations. It would also allow fantasy sports betting from online operators, new sports betting at horse racing tracks and selling of Keno tickets by groups like the VFW.

8% of the non-tribal legal Arizona sports betting profits will go to the state’s general fund while taxes from a maximum of 8% on tribal gaming revenues will go to the local governments and special state accounts. It is estimated that legal Arizona sports betting could bring in as much as $42M per year in additional state revenue.

Backed by Arizona Pro Sports Teams

Representatives for Arizona’s professional sports teams are backing the measure. Under Weninger’s proposal, teams like the Arizona Diamondbacks would be allowed to have sportsbooks inside and near their venues. Weninger’s initiative is also backed up by the major tribes in Arizona as it would allow them to add more table games while also operate sports betting facilities.

According to Arizona Diamondbacks representative Amilyn Pierce, teams in areas with legal sports betting bring in extra revenues that hurt the competitiveness of Arizona’s pro sports teams. Pierce said without legal Arizona sports betting, the state’s sports teams are at a disadvantage in a competitive market.

Small Businesses Are Being Left Out

Associations representing bars aren’t too thrilled with the proposal. Arizona’s bars, which were hit very hard by the pandemic, are complaining that they are being left out new opportunities, including new Keno games and fantasy sports betting. They argue that big operators will get more revenues from legal Arizona sports betting while bars are either closed or operating at limited capacity.

Democratic Rep. Diego Espinoza and eight other house members agree. Although the group voted for Weninger’s bill, they said that they want to see the bars and restaurants included in the measure, and that they may not back the bill in the full House if these small business are omitted.

The All-new We-Ko-Pa Casino Resort in Arizona Now Open

Arizona State Flag With a Casino Background
The all-new We-Ko-Pa Casino opened its doors last Wednesday, October 29th, ushering a new age of gaming and entertainment in the Northeast Valley and raising the bar for Valley gaming properties.It replaces the former Fort McDowell Casino which holds a special place in the fight for Indian gaming rights not only in the state but in the entire country.

Said Bernadine Burnette, president of the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation:

“We’re proud that we were Arizona’s first casino and are now the state’s newest casino. Gaming has been a part of our tribal community for the past three decades and has allowed us to provide financial security for our members and employees. Our new casino allows us to take gaming to an entirely new level while keeping a Native American look and feel – with design elements of earth, water, fire and basket-weaving that are so important to our culture.”

The Former Baja Bingo Hall

The Fort McDowell Casino opened as the Baja Bingo Hall in 1984 as the first tribal gaming operation in Arizona. Owned and operated by the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, the Baja Bingo has undergone a lot of changes and challenges.

Eight years after its launch, an attempt by Federal agents to seize its slots machines halted the Fort McDowell Casino operations. But the stoppage was only temporary as the Yavapai Nation peacefully challenged the state for its right to operate the casino on their reservation under the federal law. The Arizona casino reopened and grew its business with more casinos and gaming tables.

The All-New We-Ko-Pa Casino

The We-Ko-Pa Casino has 850 slot machines, 22 black jack tables, a five-table poker room, and a 400-seat smoke-free bino hall. In addition to a full complement of gaming amenities, the We-Ko-Pa Casino also has a wide variety of dining establishments, event venues, and other features that will ensure the enjoyment, comfort, and safety of casino patrons or guests who stay at the adjoining hotel.

The Ember restaurant is an upscale dining venue where steaks and seafood are prepared over wood-fired grills.The Market provides 24-hour quick serving food options while the Ahnala Mesquite Room at the adjoining hotel serves American-style comfort foods. The WKP bar serves pub fare and craft beer.

The Arizona casino is connected to a four-storey covered parking structure and the 246-room hotel that has been the recipient of the prestigious AAA Four Diamond award every year since its opening in 2006. The Arizona casino also shares the same name of the We-ko-pa golf Club across the street which hosts the award-winning Saguaro and Cholla golf courses.