Hard Rock to Launch Retail Sports Betting, Craps, Roulette in Florida on Dec. 7; No Mobile Update

Retail Florida sports betting, craps, and roulette will debut on Dec. 7, more than two years after the Seminole Tribe of Florida was granted the right to offer them in a 30-year deal with the state.

The fate of mobile and online sports betting, the controversial part of the compact that has led to two years of litigation that now brews in the United States Supreme Court and Florida Supreme Court, was not addressed in a Seminole Tribe press release announcing the so-called “New Era of Gambling in Florida.” The tribe touted “star-studded celebrations at its six Florida casinos. No Seminole Tribe property in Florida opened a sportsbook before mobile sports betting was shut down. Craps tables were stationed around the casino floor in the Tampa Hard Rock property in 2021 but were never used.

Retail Sports Betting, Craps, Roulette Schedule

  • December 7: Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Seminole Classic Casino in Hollywood, and Seminole Casino Coconut Creek
  • December 8: Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa
  • December 11: Seminole Casino Immokalee, and Seminole Brighton Casino

Meanwhile, Back at the Mobile Betting Question

Mobile sports betting in Florida lasted from Nov. 1 to Dec. 4 before US District Court Judge Dabney L. Friedrich ruled the “hub-and-spoke” tech model that allowed the Seminoles to accept digital bets off tribal lands, state-wide, was beyond the scope of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

West Flagler Associates and the owners of the Bonita Springs Poker Room, who had successfully sued the Department of the Interior to void the Seminoles’ compact, enjoyed a series of legal victories at the federal level until a three-judge panel from the US District Court of Appeals, DC Circuit in June ruled that the deal should be allowed to resume. West Flagler has subsequently sued in the US and Florida high courts, with deadlines approaching in the next month for legal action. West Flagler has promised to deliver its official request for the US Supreme Court to take up the case by Nov. 20.

On Oct. 12, the US Supreme Court denied a permanent stay request on the compact.

Hard-Rock-bet app
Floridians were greeted by this unintentionally humorous Hard Rock BET app message at launch on midday Wednesday.

Three key questions remain:

  • When will mobile sports betting resume?
  • Was the launch of these games timed because Hard Rock and the DOI felt litigation would be over by then?
  • Will the Seminole Tribe resume the $500 million yearly revenue share payments it halted when mobile sports betting was shut down?

Seminole Tribe of Florida spokesperson Gary Bitner told Gaming Today there would be no further updates today. So, for now, Floridian gamblers have a timeline for everything but mobile sports betting.

About the Author
Brant James

Brant James

Senior Writer
Brant James is a senior writer who covers the sports betting industry and legislation 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. He also 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 has yelled at him numerous times.

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