Just A Matter Of Time: NBA Ties The Knot With DraftKings In Sports Betting Deal

Another day plus another sports betting partnership leads to another dollar for the NBA.

The National Basketball Association and DraftKings Sportsbook announced a multi-year partnership on Monday. The deal names DraftKings as an “Authorized Sports Betting Operator” of the NBA.

As part of the deal, DraftKings will immediately have access to official NBA betting data on its mobile sports betting app and in its retail sportsbooks in states where it operates.

Scott Kaufman-Ross, senior vice president and head of Fantasy & Gaming of the NBA, commented on the partnership in a press release:

“We are excited to team with DraftKings, who has established itself as one of the leaders in the sports betting landscape in the US and has a passionate NBA following. Our partnership will provide our fans with an authentic and enhanced gaming experience and help us further protect the integrity of our games.”

DraftKings doubling down on NBA live betting

Protecting the integrity of the game seems to be a common theme with every gambling company and sports league partnership. That is no different here.

Bettors should be assured that the integrity of the game is already protected. And there isn’t any proof that having access to official data provides any further protections.

One thing official data does do, in theory, is provide more opportunity for live betting. Live betting, or in-game betting, is one of the most popular sports betting options at DraftKings and other online sportsbooks in New Jersey.

That is good news for a company where nearly half of NBA betting comes from live betting. And where almost one-third of all NBA bettors have placed in-game wagers at some point.

“NBA games are among the most captivating, dramatic and widely consumed sports entertainment products globally,” said Ezra Kucharz, the chief business officer at DraftKings. “And the advocacy of the league around legal sports betting further demonstrates its consistent foresight to innovate for the betterment of the fan experience.

“The correlation between sports betting and fan engagement is proven, and we look forward to the opportunities that being an authorized gaming operator of the NBA will unlock for consumers.”

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The NBA sure does get around

Immediately after the door opened for legal sports betting in New Jersey (and across the country), sports leagues set out to encourage legislation mandating integrity fees.

It wasn’t long before the leagues realized that approach or requiring official data agreements through state regulations was not in the cards.

The NBA saw the writing on the wall. It went to work early on developing agreements to secure its piece of the very lucrative pie.

The NBA has already embraced data as a way of transforming the league to maximize each team’s talent. It might as well get more bang for its buck.

Besides DraftKings, just a few of the current NBA deals in place include:

FanDuel is DraftKings’ most significant competitor in New Jersey. Having access to the same data seems paramount to keep DraftKings and its live betting options competitive.

The partnership between DraftKings and NBA makes good business sense for both companies. It keeps DraftKings competitive and makes the NBA more money.

It’s safe to say that we can move past the need to use “protecting the integrity of the game” as a reason for these partnerships. Being good for business is reason enough.

About the Author

Kim Yuhl

Kim Yuhl has been covering the US online gambling market since 2013. Her work is featured on various sites and covers sports betting, online casino gambling, and online poker. Kim is a full-time traveler and vlogger and is currently slow traveling to 60 countries. You can follow her travels at kimandway.com and on YouTube at kimandway.