Fanatics to Open Retail Sportsbook Adjacent Columbus Blue Jackets’ Nationwide Arena

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Retail sportsbooks are becoming the must-have amenity for professional sports franchises in Ohio. The Columbus Blue Jackets hopped on the trend Tuesday, as Fanatics Betting and Gaming, the online and retail sports betting company within the global digital sports platform, announced plans for one adjacent Nationwide Arena.

Unlike retail sportsbooks located within Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. and the Footprint Center in Phoenix, the Fanatics shop in the Arena District will set up nearby the venue as a fan experience, as has become the industry norm.

It’s scheduled to open in late August, on a similar timetable as another Fanatics retail spot in Progressive Field, home of the Cleveland Guardians.

According to a Fanatics release, the sportsbook in Columbus will be located at 401 North Front Street. The main entrance will be located “in the alleyway immediately north of the entrances to Buca di Beppo and Starbucks.”

Blue Jackets Sr. Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Cameron Scholvin said in a release:

The Columbus Blue Jackets are constantly seeking new and exciting ways to engage with our fans. We believe this collaboration with Fanatics Betting and Gaming on a world-class sportsbook location just outside the doors of Nationwide Arena in the heart of the Arena District does just that.”

Fanatics is also the online sports betting partner of the Blue Jackets. The company, which recently agreed to purchase the American assets of the PointsBet sports betting brand, is quasi-live for mobile betting in four states, officially beta testing in Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio, and Tennessee.

Betting Partnership Tracker: Sportsbook, Casino & DFS Deals of NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL Teams

Details of the Blue Jackets' Fanatics Sportsbook

  • More than 5,000 square feet
  • Four betting windows
  • Fourteen self-service betting kiosks
  • An LED video wall
  • Twenty TV monitors
  • A full-service restaurant

"We're thrilled to be partnering with the Blue Jackets to bring a world-class retail experience to the arena district in downtown Columbus," Ari Borod, Chief Business Officer, Fanatics Betting and Gaming, said in the release. "The Jackets are one of the youngest teams in the league, and we are excited to leverage our partnership to grow with them and complement our online sports betting experience that is currently being beta-tested in Ohio."

Blue Jackets retail sportsbook professional franchise
Rendering of Fanatics' planned sportsbook near Nationwide Arena

Most Ohio Pro Teams Planned Sportsbooks or Lounges

By Ohio sports betting law, pro teams and horse racing tracks, in addition to casinos, can apply for licenses to partner with gambling companies to open retail sportsbooks.

All those pro sports teams have been approved by the Ohio Casino Control Commission, but the state's two NFL teams have not acted upon the ability to build a sportsbook, although the Cleveland Browns plan to open a Bally's sports lounge in FirstEnergy Stadium. The Cincinnati Bengals have an official sports betting partnership with Betfred that, according to a release will include "a variety of fan engagement activations, promotions and free-to-play gaming opportunities" but no lounge for Paycor Stadium.

While the Cincinnati Reds' relocated BetMGM retail sportsbook will be less than a half mile away from Paycor Stadium.

The Columbus Crew boast a Tipico lounge.

Sportsbooks at Ohio Pro Venues

  • CINCINNATI REDS (MLB): Their BetMGM retail spot will move out of Great American Ball Park to a nearby locale the team hopes will generate more business.
  • CLEVELAND CAVALIERS (NBA): Caesars opened a two-story sportsbook in the atrium of Rocket Mortgage Field House.
  • CLEVELAND GUARDIANS (MLB): Plan to open a Fanatics sportsbook in August.
  • COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS (NHL): A Fanatics sportsbook is also planned for August.
  • FC CINCINNATI (MLS): The team opened a satellite SuperBook Sports retail shop at Taft's Ale House near TQL Stadium.
  • PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME VILLAGE: Announced plans for a BetRivers retail sportsbook.
About the Author
Brant James

Brant James

Senior Writer
Brant James is a senior writer at Gaming Today. An alum of the Tampa Bay Times, ESPN.com, espnW, SI.com and USA Today, he's covered motorsports and the NHL as beats, once made a tail-hook landing on an aircraft carrier with Dale Earnhardt Jr., and rode to the top of Mt. Washington with Travis Pastrana. John Tortorella yelled at him numerous times. In covering the sports betting industry, he's looking for what and who are next and why.

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