Hockey Hall of Famer and all-time scoring leader Wayne Gretzky, known as “The Great One,” has inked a deal to become a brand ambassador for BetMGM, the company announced today.
BetMGM is an industry leader in sports betting and online gaming. They are an official betting partner of the National Hockey League and have relationships with almost every professional sports entity in the country and many around the globe. MGM Resorts, a subsidiary of the parent company, is an officially licensed gaming partner of the NHL.
Gretzky’s New Role
Gretzky will serve in an advisory capacity and lend his name and image to promoting BetMGM and their gaming products, as well as responsible gaming.
Gretzky won four Stanley Cup titles as a player, and a record nine Hart Trophies as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player. He is the all-time leader in goals scored and assists. Gretzky’s 1,963 assists are more than any other player has points in their career. His iconic uniform #99 was retired by the entire National Hockey League in 2000.
“BetMGM is a terrific company and one at the forefront of the dynamic changes taking place in the sports business. I’m excited to be a part of the company’s continued expansion into new states and territories and to help tell BetMGM’s story,” Gretzky said in a statement released by BetMGM on Wednesday.
The Future Of Hockey Betting
Traditionally, betting on the NFL, college football, and the National Basketball Association. Followed by Major League Baseball. Of the four major spSorts leagues in the United States, the National Hockey League has lagged behind in betting popularity. As Canada nears legalization of sports betting and online sports betting, the future of hockey gambling is positioned to grow.
The NHL will negotiate a new national (U.S.-based) TV contract at the end of the current season. That deal is expected to pump millions of dollars into the 32 franchises, who according to Forbes have increased in value by six percent since 2019.
Interest in hockey in the United States may be increasing ironically because of the legalization of sports betting across the country. More fans are able to access odds and sportsbooks that cover the league. Also, the U.S. franchises are dominating the NHL: no Canadian team has won the Stanley Cup since 1993, and popular teams in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh have won nine of the last twelve.
BetMGM Expands Gaming Efforts Into New Sports and States
Based on deals in recent months, BetMGM is working to expand into many sports that have traditionally been less popular with gamblers. Earlier in 2021, BetMGM became the first official betting operator of the LPGA, entered into a partnership with Richard Childress Racing, and forged an innovative arrangement with Topgolf that will offer advanced simulations of live games and tournaments. Late last year, BetMGM and the National Lacrosse League partnered to deliver a sports betting platform for that sport.
BetMGM Sportsbook is operating currently in nine states: Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. They are active in efforts to make online sports betting legal in other states, including Maryland, where voters legalized it in November of 2020. In anticipation of online sportsbooks being available in Maryland later in 2021, BetMGM has entered agreements as official gaming partners of the Baltimore Ravens, and they are gaming sponsors of the Washington Nationals as well.