It is easy to think the NJ sports betting market is saturated because it certainly feels like it is. Since mid-June, eight retail and eight online and mobile sportsbooks found their way to market.
Don’s get too comfortable with the current betting options, though, because there are likely a few more sportsbooks on the horizon.
As per the NJ sports betting law, each authorized licensee is allowed three online skins for a total of 42 possible apps.
Which sportsbook will be next to launch in the Garden State is anybody’s guess. To make an educated guess, however, let’s start by taking a look at where things stand.
The retail side of sports betting in NJ
Retail sportsbook locations include:
The two racetracks are making waves. Monmouth Park was the first to accept sports bets in New Jersey, and Meadowlands has come out strong as the revenue leader in the nascent market.
Golden Nugget Atlantic City launched its retail location with a temporary sportsbook to get in the game early and has since opened its permanent space. The Borgata Sportsbook, on the other hand, is still accepting sports bets in temporary quarters.
The self-proclaimed “best in the business,” William Hill Sports Book @ Ocean Resort, was a vision of Ocean Resort’s owner Bruce Deifik from the very beginning. And it is no surprise that Harrah’s, Bally’s, and Resorts all wanted in on the action.
Online and mobile sportsbooks are the talk of the town
The current online and mobile sportsbooks are:
- DraftKings (web, iOS, and Android)
- playMGM (Android)
- SugarHouse Sportsbook (web, iOS, and Android)
- Caesars (web, iOS, and Android)
- FanDuel Sportsbook (web, iOS, and Android)
- BetStars (iOS and Android)
- 888 Sport (web and Android)
- William Hill (web, iOS and Android)
DraftKings was the first mobile sportsbook to launch after teaming up with Resorts during the summer.
The launch came as a surprise to the entire industry. It allowed the daily fantasy sports leader to transition to sports betting without competition for nearly three weeks.
The rush was on for the rest of the pack to get online before the start of football season. You might notice some operators do not have iOS apps yet. Rest assured that if a sportsbook is online, they are working to have their app added to the App Store as soon as possible.
All the NJ sports betting possibilities
Now, let’s take a look at which operators are left and which might potentially launch a sportsbook.
Tropicana has been in transition. Carl Icahn recently sold it as part of a larger transaction. Penn National now manages the property while Eldorado Gaming oversees the gaming operations.
Times of transition are not always the best times to launch new ventures, but that may not be the case for Tropicana. Recently, the casino inked a deal with William Hill US. The sportsbook is already a prominent player in New Jersey sports betting circles.
Additionally, Eldorado was just approved by the Casino Control Commission to take over the gaming management. Those two key milestones likely indicate a sportsbook is on the horizon.
Tropicana hinted at an October reveal.
Golden Nugget has held the top spot among NJ gambling sites for a while now. As such, it might be surprising to see the company take its sweet time in launching an online sportsbook.
Granted, its partner SugarHouse in Philadelphia joined the online market in late August. But for Golden Nugget specifically, and SBTech as its provider, it’s just retail at this time.
Maybe we will see some movement from the company now that their permanent retail book is open. Don’t bet on it, though, as the news from the company on its plans to accept online sports bets is practically non-existent.
A Resorts mobile sportsbook is mostly an unknown. With two online sportsbooks (DraftKings and BetStars) operating under its license, the casino might be content to take a wait-and-see approach.
Or it might not.
In August, Resorts commented on the possibility of a self-branded online sportsbook by the end of September. And we are just days away from that time frame.
Hard Rock Atlantic City smashed guitars on the Atlantic City Boardwalk this summer to a lot of fanfare. On the same day, although a little more quietly, it launched its online casino.
Hard Rock Chairman,Jim Allen has made statements in the past that signal a potential sports betting presence in the Garden State.
It has deals in place with bet365 and Kindred Group (Unibet), which signals an online sportsbook skin is a possibility. The current status of those two brands is a mystery, but it’s likely both are in the works to launch sooner rather than later.
A retail location, however, is still an unknown.
Ocean Resort’s retail sportsbook partner is William Hill, and William Hill launched its own app in September. That bodes well for a future self-branded online sportsbook for the new casino.
Alongside Hard Rock, Ocean Resort launched its NJ online casino when it opened its doors in Atlantic City in June. It seems likely an online sportsbook will follow at some point in the near future, perhaps even tied to the existing gambling site.
Which sports betting operator is likely to be next?
Our money is on Tropicana. With technology partnerships in place and Eldorado’s recent approval from the Casino Control Commission, it seems a likely next step.
Eldorado also has a partnership agreement with William Hill and is already in the sports betting market in Nevada. It seems as if all the pieces to the puzzle are in place.
Of course, if we were really betting, we would probably hedge our bets some. The New Jersey sports betting market has been anything but predictable and as such, that means its anybody’s game.