For the first time in US history, a sportsbook will be set up inside a professional sports venue, thanks to a deal that was struck on Thursday.
On Thursday, the sports betting giant William Hill announced a partnership with Monumental Sports & Entertainment, the company that owns the Capital One Arena in Washington DC.
Monumental Sports also own the Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals and Washington Mystics.
This news comes just a day after William Hill was named as an official NBA sports betting partner.
What’s covered in the deal?
Under the deal, a William Hill sportsbook will be constructed inside the Capital One Arena in Washington DC. This news was confirmed earlier this year after Ted Leonsis, Monumental’s owner, signalled his intent to open a sportsbook at the venue.
In a press statement, Leonsis said: “Monumental is dedicated to bringing the latest technology and innovation into our arena and delivering extraordinary experiences to our fans. We are excited to partner with William Hill, the industry leader in sports betting, to become the first professional sports arena in the US to feature a sportsbook.
“Through this partnership, we are thrilled to enhance the fan experience with innovative gaming opportunities and transformational dining and culinary options not just on event days, but year-round. Our partnership with William Hill compliments our vision of making our arena the premier sports and entertainment destination in Washington, DC.”
Inside the sportsbook
Although the partnership is still pending regulatory approval, the announcement contained some details on what bettors can expect to find at the venue.
According to the press release, the sportsbook will feature a full-service food and beverage offering and will span multiple floors. The sportsbook will remain open on a daily basis, including on game days, event days and non-event days at the arena.
Bettors will also be able to place wagers using the William Hill betting app while inside the arena.
Both companies have yet to confirm a launch date for the sportsbook.
Joe Asher, CEO of William Hill US said: “This sportsbook will be a flagship venue for the industry and will serve the sports fans of the Washington DC area unlike any other.
“Partnering with Ted Leonsis and the entire Monumental team was ideal. They share our vision and principles for bringing innovative sports betting opportunities to fans in a responsible way. This deal sets a new benchmark for how the industry will serve fans and how fans engage in sports.”
Sports betting in DC
Earlier this year, Washington DC’s mayor signed the proposed sports betting bill into law. Under the district’s sports betting law, bettors will be able to place bets via an online app run by the DC Lottery, at select sporting venues and at licensed bars.
The creation of the DC Lottery’s sports betting app has been surrounded in controversy after the council voted to skip the standard bidding process and grant the district’s sports betting contract to Intralot.
At the moment, a court case threatens to derail the launch of sports betting in DC. Last week, Judge Joan Zeldon issued an immediate order for Washington DC to cease all payments to Intralot. The order has since been extended until the companies appear in court on October 18.
While the current situation has stalled the launch of online sports betting in DC, it hasn’t stopped other interested parties from moving forward with sports betting in the district.