Don’t expect a bet365 retail sportsbook at Spectrum Center anytime soon.
Even though the Charlotte Hornets NBA franchise announced a 10-year sponsorship and North Carolina sports betting industry access deal with the gambling giant last week, team chief operating officer Jacob Gallagher told the Charlotte Business Journal that a retail sportsbook at the team’s home venue was “wasn’t a priority.”
“You’re not going to see that in our building now. As we continue to grow the partnership and have conversations, that might change. But, for either of us, we really want to make sure that our fans have the best user experience in their hand, and they can place bets that way.”
With legal sports betting in North Carolina to include mobile betting, fans will not actually need a retail sportsbook as long as they have online connectivity. Mobile wagering comprises as much as 90% of betting handle in the 27 US jurisdictions that allow it. Though many professional teams have built communal spaces for fans, the need for a working sportsbook with ticket writers or kiosks hasn’t gained wide traction.
“When we look at a retail sportsbook, and we talk to other teams, and we talk to bet365, right now, with this being a mobile sports-betting license where people can bet on their phones, the retail sportsbook wasn’t a priority for us,” Gallagher told CBJ. “You’re not going to see that in our building now.
“As we continue to grow the partnership and have conversations, that might change. But, for either of us, we really want to make sure that our fans have the best user experience in their hand, and they can place bets that way.”
North Carolina Pro Properties Key Cog In Sports Betting
North Carolina’s sports betting law allows licensed operators to gain market access through deals with eight professional sports teams or venues, including the Hornets, Carolina Panthers and Hurricanes, Charlotte Motor Speedway, and Quail Hollow Club golf course.
The Hurricanes envision a retail shop as part of a revitalization of the entertainment zone around PNC Arena.
“We want to make this just a destination place, make it a place people want to go to have fun regardless of what’s going on in the arena, the attraction to the area that, you know, people want to be here,” general manager and arena president DonWaddell said. “If you’re going to do it, you got to do it right.
“You only open once. So once we open that thing, once we get by a temporary location, open a permanent location, we want to make sure it’s state of the art.”
Spectrum Center Sportsbook Would Be Among a Select Few
A sportsbook in Spectrum Center would be a novelty even with legal wagering embraced by pro sports leagues.
Currently, two NBA venues, the Footprint Center in Phoenix and Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C., have retail sportsbooks inside the building. Capital One is currently the only NHL arena with such a space. The Hornets were the first to announce a pact, but the rest figure to have plenty of time.
Although the window for launching sports betting in North Carolina opens in January, regulatory procedures are expected to continue at least into spring. The bet365 NC bonus code is expected to be among the first offers to launch in the Tar Heel state.
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