Mississippi Sports Betting to Launch at MGM Properties in Biloxi, Tunica

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As had been rumored since the new Mississippi sports betting regulations went into effect on July 21, the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino (Biloxi, MS) and Gold Strike Casino Resort (Tunica, MS) will accept their first legal sports wagers on Wednesday, August 1 at 12 p.m. CT.

“The two Mississippi gaming resorts, both part of the MGM Resorts International portfolio, will celebrate the occasion with invited guests placing simultaneous first bets in the two locations at opposite ends of the Magnolia State,” a statement from MGM reads. “These first sports wagers will be placed on the 26th anniversary of the first casino bet made in Mississippi’s modern casino age, when the first pair of dice was rolled at the Isle of Capri in Biloxi on August 1, 1992.”

For now, wagering will be retail, or on-premises only. Mississippi’s enabling legislation in 2017 that permits sports wagering now there there’s been a change in federal law, courtesy the United States Supreme Court in May, but allows only wagering only in person and via mobile on casino premises.

Mississippi Sports Betting Will Arrive This Week in Biloxi and Tunica at MGM’s Beau Rivage and Gold Strike.

 

Among dignitaries and sports figures invited to place the first wagers are Willis McGahee, former NFL Pro Bowl running back (2003-2013); New Orleans native Robert Royal, former NFL tightend  (2002-2010); and handicapper and sports analyst for USA TODAY, Danny Sheridan.

“It’s been exciting, it’s been busy, and we’re starting to get applications in,” said Mississippi Gaming Commission executive director Allen Godfrey in early July. “Operators are diligently preparing. It appears that the enthusiasm is high.

“We’ve had staff in Nevada, we’ve had them in New Jersey,” Godfrey continued. “We talk constantly with these other agencies and the model we are after is the Nevada model.”

Support and training from personnel in Nevada is part of why MGM will be the first to take wagers in Mississippi, and why the MGM-owned Borgata Hotel & Resort in Atlantic City, New Jersey opened its doors on June 14, the day that the Garden State saw its first two licensees launch.

Over a dozen of Mississippi’s casinos, largely concentrated in Biloxi on the Gulf Coast and Tunica in the northwestern part of the state near Memphis, Tennessee, have applied for licenses.

 

Full details of the sportsbook at the Beau Rivage, already regarded as a cream-of-the-crop resort in Mississippi, are not available. The lounge is likely a temporary space for the time being with about 5 to 8 sports betting windows/tellers available.

Further, we anticipate a traditional sports betting menu, with straight bets, parlays, teasers, props and futures, just like the recently launched Borgata in Atlantic City, New Jersey. And there will be no limitation on wagering on local college teams — namely Ole Miss and Mississippi State.

[Also See: ‘Enthusiasm Is High’ as Mississippi Sports Betting Preparations Underway]


Other Casinos Soon to Follow.

Mississippi Sports Betting legal sportsbook golden nugget
The Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino in Biloxi, MS

Sports Handle has learned that the Golden Nugget in Biloxi will also launch sometime in August, likely before football season.

Likewise, the Horsehoe Tunica, next door neighbor of the Gold Strike, will launch “The Book” in mid-August, roughly. That opening will coincide with a sportsbook launch at Biloxi’s Harrah’s Gulf Coast Hotel & Casino — a Caesars property like the Horseshoe. Others in both Biloxi and Tunica will follow in the coming weeks.

This MGM news comes on the same day that the company disclosed further details of its $200 million joint venture with British betting group GVC. Plus — Monday brought word of its partnership with regional operator Boyd Gaming. The latter arrangement will expand MGM’s portfolio into states likely to offer sports betting and/or online gaming in the coming months or years. The partnership has an eye toward jurisdictions where either Boyd Gaming or MGM Resorts operate physical casino resorts and should be able to obtain licenses to operate online.

This sure beats a Friday news dump!  Stay tuned for further coverage Mississippi sports betting launches and developments.

The post Mississippi Sports Betting to Launch This Week at MGM Properties in Biloxi, Tunica appeared first on SportsHandle.

‘Enthusiasm Is High’ as Mississippi Sports Betting Preparations Underway

The post ‘Enthusiasm Is High’ as Mississippi Sports Betting Preparations Underway appeared first on SportsHandle.

The Mississippi Gaming Commission has received five applications from commercial casinos interested in introducing sports betting, according to executive director Allen Godfrey. The Magnolia State’s gaming regulations go into effect on July 21 and the state has 28 commercial casinos, including many owned by large gaming corporations.

Godfrey said the MGM and Caesar’s properties, as well as The Palace Casino Resort in Biloxi, have made application for sports betting. The expectation is that every commercial casino will follow suit in the coming weeks.

Mississippi rolled out its sports betting regulations on June 21. The gaming commission has sent representatives to both Nevada and New Jersey to see working sportsbooks and add to their base of knowledge.

Mississippi Sports Betting Regulations Go Into Effect June 21, and Operators Are Beginning to Build MS Sportsbooks and Hire and Train Staff.

“It’s been exciting, it’s been busy, and we’re starting to get applications in,” Godfrey said. “Operators are diligently preparing. … It appears that the enthusiasm is high.

“We’ve had staff in Nevada, we’ve had them in New Jersey. We talk constantly with these other agencies and the model we are after is the Nevada model.”

Mississippi has had gambling for more than 25 years, but Godfrey said the “learning curve is straight up,” when it comes to sports betting. Sports betting in Mississippi will be fairly straightforward to start – bets will be limited to those that are more mainstream and mobile betting will not be part of the picture at the outset. So the focus is simply on getting sportsbooks ready for in-casino sports betting.

According to the Biloxi Sun-Herald, the MGM-owned Beau Rivage Casino in Biloxi is planning to be ready to accept sports bets on July 21, the first day bets can be taken. The casino is in the midst of building a temporary seven-window sportsbook and hiring and training new staff. The story goes on to say that all 28 of Mississippi’s casinos plan to offer sports betting.

Mississippi Sports Betting set to open at Beau Rivage Mississippi Casino
The Beau Rivage

MS Tribal Casinos May Roll Out Sports Betting Ahead of State Regulations, Which Go Into Effect on June 21.

The state has no control over its tribal gaming properties, and in late May, the Band of Choctaw, owners of the Pearl River and Bok Homa casino resorts, voted to allow sports betting. The initial plan was to roll out sports betting over the summer.

Mississippi’s commercial casinos will be taxed at a 12 percent rate, and like every other state, the state is looking forward to the extra cash flow.

“Anything we get will be more than we get now,” Godfrey said.

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