The NHL has announced a multi-year gaming partnership with MGM Resorts International to become the league’s first official gaming and resort destination partner.
MGM Resorts, which is also an official resorts partner of the NHL, will have the ability to market many of its products and services to the NHL’s millions of fans via its various media platforms and events.
While the NHL won’t receive a portion of gambling profits, the agreement will give MGM access to proprietary league data that could eventually include puck and player tracking information in order to provide customers with specialized game insights in addition to other special gambling opportunities.
“The new sports betting landscape presents a unique opportunity for fan engagement utilizing technology and data that are exclusive to our league,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement.
“As a leading global gaming operator and entertainment company, MGM Resorts is the perfect partner for us to begin our transformative entry into this space. Fan engagement, technological advancement and innovation are paramount to our progressive approach and will be at the forefront of everything we do.”
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) October 29, 2018
Bettman also left open the possibility of future partnerships since the one with MGM is not exclusive. He downplayed the likelihood that opening the door to sports betting could have a negative impact on the league’s players.
“I’ve never worried and don’t worry about the integrity of our game,” Bettman said. “It has been strong even when the majority of gambling was not through legal sportsbooks.”
MGM believes expanded sports betting will eventually be available in 25 to 30 states.