Rivers Casino, SugarHouse Casino and Harrah’s Chester Down and Marina all got the go-ahead from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to offer land-based sports bets to players in Pennsylvania.
Chester Downs and Marina which is operated by Harrah’s also got approval to offer mobile and internet sports bets in addition to a land-based offering.
It now means that each casino can move forward with readying their sportsbook for launch—the date of which is still to be determined by the Bboard.
The above casinos now join the ranks of Parx Casino and Mount Airy in being one step closer to offering sports bets to their customers.
Rivers Casino, Sports Betting Only
Rivers Casino approval of a sports betting license will enable it to focus its efforts on readying its sportsbook. It returned three other licenses which would have allowed it to offer online poker, casino and slot games back to the board in what was seen as an unexpected and unprecedented move by a land-based casino.
At the time of the u-turn, a Rivers Casino representative commented that the casino still intended to offer igaming to players in PA but wanted to explore its options without specifying what those options were.
However, the rep went on to say that “Rivers is actively pursuing a sports wagering certificate to offer both land-based and mobile sports betting,” making it the only license the casino ended up applying for.
SugarHouse Moves Ahead
SugarHouse Casino will also be happy to move ahead with its plans for opening a sportsbook since gaining approval from the PGCB.
A December 1 launch date is slated for both SugarHouse and Rivers Casinos for the land-based sports wagering grand opening.
Partnering With Established Brands
The board also approved William Hill’s conditional Sports Wager Operator License. This will allow the sportsbook to move forward with its partnership with Pennsylvania’s bricks and mortar Hollywood Casino.
“When you partner with one of these large operations it really allows you to normalize the bets across all the operations they run,” Justin Carter, General Manager at Penn National Gaming (who owns Hollywood Casino) said when asked about the William Hill partnership at the G2E conference that took place in Las Vegas last month.
It will also give Hollywood Casino a step up in attracting players who might be familiar with the William Hill brand in other states to come and play with them in PA.
Land based casinos intending to offer sports betting to their customers will still have to wait for the PGCB final sign-off before being able to go live with their offerings.