The Arizona Cardinals are set to make National Football League history soon: on Monday, it was announced that a retail sportsbook is planned for State Farm Stadium in 2022, and it will be the first of its kind in the NFL.
The Arizona Cardinals and Gila River Hotel & Casinos have teamed up with BetMGM to make this new retail sportsbook a reality. The Gila River Indian Community owns and operates the Hotel and Casino, and it has a working relationship with the Cardinals already in place.
Rumors of a partnership between BetMGM and Gila River Hotel & Casinos have been circulating for weeks, but adding the Arizona Cardinals to the deal was not expected. In a statement, Cardinals owner Michael Bidwell stated, “This is a tremendous opportunity to build upon our long-standing relationship with Gila River and launch a new one with BetMGM.”
Arizona is still on track to launch sports betting on September 9, the date of the first regular-season game in the NFL. The Arizona Cardinals will not begin their season until September 12 in a matchup with the Tennessee Titans.
Monday was also the deadline for online operators to submit license applications, and the Arizona Department of Gaming is expected to award these licenses on August 16. There are a total of 20 online licenses available, with 10 going to Native American tribes and another 10 going to professional sports teams.
BetMGM has seen some huge increases in revenue over the last fiscal quarter, which just ended at the end of June. According to a report from the company, the total revenue jumped from $5.2 million all the way up to $45.9 million.
State Farm Stadium has already been selected to host Super Bowl LVII in 2023, and this BetMGM Sportsbook will be well established by that point. The College Football Playoffs also use the home of the Cardinals for a major bowl game.
Washington DC was actually the first area of the US to see a retail sportsbook at a sports arena as William Hill was able to open up at Capital One Arena. That sportsbook has now been rebranded under the Caesars name, and it is open year-round.
Arizona Seeing Plenty of Partnerships
Even before Arizona sports betting was approved by the federal government, partnerships had already started to form in the state. Some online operators worked to enter the market through deals with Native American tribes, while the biggest names sought out deals with professional sports teams.
FanDuel Sportsbook is expected to launch at Phoenix Suns Arena after partnering with the NBA franchise. Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks, will eventually have a Caesars Sportsbook inside of the stadium.
When sports betting licenses are announced next week, there will still be a couple of professional sports licenses that aren’t claimed. This will allow for growth in the market and can allow new operators to enter the state at some point.