This week in Las Vegas was dominated by one story. No, it wasn’t MGM Resorts announcing new sustainable sourcing goals for eggs and chickens. Just prior to reporting earnings, MGM Resorts sent out a press release that Jim Murren, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, informed the Company’s Board of Directors that he will step down from his positions before his contract expires.
I recently visited the renovated SAHARA Las Vegas for a breakfast meeting and happy hour. The breakfast meeting was the first time my friend and I visited the new Sahara post renovations. Our discussion over coffee about the new Sahara went something like this. There’s nothing wrong with the new Sahara but there’s nothing particularly amazing.
Press release: February 10, 2020 – LAS VEGAS – CBS Sports and William Hill, America’s leading sports book operator, today announced a strategic partnership that makes William Hill the Official Sports Book and Wagering Data Provider across all CBS Sports platforms. The deal will reimagine fan engagement through a unique integration of sports betting, media, product and technology. The partnership will tip off with initial integrations in March on CBS Sports digital platforms, with a full rollout planned for the fantasy football season.
The partnership extends CBS Sports’ digital leadership in the sports betting space and allows for the creation of even more relevant content across its wide array of platforms. CBS Sports will utilize William Hill’s odds, experts and more than 140 sports books to bolster its current digital offerings, delivering deeper information and programming produced from William Hill sports books across the country, and further engaging sports bettors and fans. In addition, the partnership includes opportunities to feature William Hill data, odds and markets across CBS television programming.
William Hill will receive exclusive rights to promote its brand across CBS Sports’ broad range of digital properties, including through CBS Sports Fantasy, one of the largest fantasy platforms in the world, resulting in highly efficient customer acquisition for the sports betting company.
“We’re thrilled to launch this momentous partnership, which will allow us to deepen our investment and further extend our leadership in delivering multi-platform sports wagering content, while providing William Hill with unprecedented reach for their market-leading betting platform as they continue to grow their industry-leading U.S. business,” said Jeffrey Gerttula, Executive Vice President and General Manager, CBS Sports Digital. “The power of our distribution, combined with the strength of our brands and the expertise of William Hill, has us well positioned to tap into the explosive growth of the legal sports betting industry in the U.S. Together, we will deliver even more value to this rapidly growing segment of sports fans.”
“CBS Sports, similar to William Hill, has a longstanding history of connecting fans directly to the biggest events and most iconic moments in sports,” said Joe Asher, CEO of William Hill US. “We are excited about this partnership, with assets including mass-reach digital content products, one of the largest fantasy sports databases and platforms in the world, and leading sports television programming, which will allow us to expand the William Hill brand across America quickly and efficiently.”
CBS Sports Digital is the second-largest sports property in the U.S. with more than 80 million users per month across its sites and apps as well as tens of millions of followers on social platforms. CBS Sports Digital offerings include SportsLine, the dedicated subscription platform for game picks and predictions that has seen strong subscriber growth in recent years; CBSSports.com; 24/7 streaming network CBS Sports HQ, which features the nightly SportsLine show focused on sports betting and delivered triple-digit viewership growth in 2019; CBS Sports Fantasy; CBS Sports apps; and 247Sports.
Powered by a heritage that dates back to 1934, William Hill established its U.S. presence in Las Vegas in 2012 and has grown to become America’s leading sports book operator by differentiating itself from the industry as an innovative pioneer in sports betting. Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that overturned PASPA in 2018, William Hill has led the United States expansion of sports betting and now has operations in 10 states. The company currently accepts one out of every four sports bets placed in the U.S.
Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed.
We’re going to jump right into the Vegas News this week because I found a new document just as I was sitting down. On Friday, the Nevada Gaming Control Board released the 179 page 2019 Gaming Abstract Report. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to go through the entire document yet so I’ll probably have some thoughts next week.
Press release: LAS VEGAS (Feb. 10, 2020) – SAHARA Las Vegas will welcome players to its all-new poker room on Friday, Feb. 14 with an array of game offerings and impressive room features. The Poker Room at SAHARA Las Vegas will be open daily beginning at 10 a.m.
The new poker room boasts seven tables, a 16-foot by nine-foot LED video wall and five additional screens throughout the room along with 24/7 food options provided by Northside Café. The room will offer an extensive game chart including No Limit Texas Holdem, Limit Holdem, Pot Limit Omaha, 7-card Stud and various mix games with the ability to spread what players are seeking.
Tournaments will be offered daily with at least four start times and buy-ins ranging from $45 to $100, with No Limit Texas Holdem as the primary tournament. Live cash games will also run daily and promotions will be held throughout the duration of those games. The Poker Room at SAHARA Las Vegas also offers a competitive rake at 10 percent with a $4 max. Players will receive $2 in rewards points per hour played in a cash game by signing up to play through Poker Atlas. Points can be redeemed at several of the resort’s restaurants, while Club 52 members are eligible to receive personalized deals and one-of-a-kind access to everything SAHARA Las Vegas has to offer.
The Poker Room at SAHARA Las Vegas will host a grand opening celebration on Friday, Feb. 21. Players can enjoy champagne, hors d’oeuvres, branded swag, gift cards and giveaways. Bounties will also be in play for the exciting event.
To view current cash games and tournaments or to register to play, visit pokeratlas.com/poker-room/sahara-las-vegas. For more information on the Poker Room and SAHARA Las Vegas, visit saharalasvegas.com.
I found Las Vegas and the casino business because of gambling. My first time gambling was in grade school when I learned how to play poker. We played for pennies and had a great time. My poker playing days stayed on the east coast since I only gamble in casinos nowadays.
Press release: LAS VEGAS – The Plaza Hotel & Casino will host its annual March Mania viewing parties from Thursday, March 19 to Sunday, March 22 in its Plaza Event Center, a nearly 5,000 sq. ft. event space that has 18 large screen high-definition televisions, two projectors and a state-of-the-art sound system, making it one of the city’s most popular sports event viewing experiences.
At the Plaza’s March Mania Viewing Party, guests will enjoy food from Pop Up Pizza and drink specials from multiple bars inside the Plaza Event Center. The March Mania Viewing Party and the Plaza’s Omaha Lounge and Race & Sports Book bars will offer several drink specials, including Jameson for $5, Guinness draft for $5 and a Jameson shot with a domestic beer for $8.
In addition to its multiple HD screens, the Plaza Event Center has flexible seating options so large and small groups can mix and mingle while watching the basketball games. The party will also have William Hill satellite betting stations, making it convenient for guests to places bets during the games.
There will also be a $25,000 March Mayhem Drawing. Entries can be earned now through March 28. Thirty players are paid in free slot play, with the top prize of $5,000 in free slot play. Complete rules and details on how to enter are available at the players’ club.
Admission to the Plaza’s March Mania Viewing Party is $20 for a One-Day Pass or $40 for a Four-Day Pass (plus taxes and fees). Each admission pass includes one koozie and one complimentary drink and food item per day. Tickets can be purchased online at www.plazahotelcasino.com/entertainment/march-mania/, at the Casino Box Office, or by calling 702-386-2507. Doors open at 8 a.m. each day.
Press release: LAS VEGAS – Downtown Las Vegas hotspot the D Las Vegas will up the ante with the reveal of its original bar concept, BarCanada, an ode to Canadian sports and culture. Debuting this March, the hockey-inspired tavern will merge modern design, specialty cocktails and an intimate game-day viewing space as part of the hotel’s second-level expansion project.
Additionally, the D will refresh its 9,000-square-foot second floor casino, with the renovation adding 800 square feet to its current sportsbook, Circa Sports; all-new Keno and high-limit slot areas; and new programming from VSiN, The Sports Betting Network.
“There’s no denying that Las Vegas has transformed into a sports destination, and the D’s casino and sportsbook expansion is a direct response to that growth,” said Derek Stevens, CEO of the D Las Vegas. “As a hockey fan, I know where you watch a game can be just as important as the game itself. We are excited to debut a high-energy space where locals and visitors alike will want to grab a drink, place a bet and cheer for their favorite teams.”
BarCanada also will bring on-site programming by VSiN, where their team of experts will provide sports betting analysis and live insights. A proud partner of the D, VSiN currently broadcasts live from the hotel’s sports hub LONGBAR, and will house a studio within the sportsbook at Stevens’ upcoming casino-resort project, Circa Resort & Casino.
Brian Musburger, CEO of VSiN, said, “We’re thrilled to expand our partnership with Derek and the D. Everyone loves VSiN’s hits from LONGBAR, but as we continue to bring our unique sports betting content to a rapidly growing audience, it will be amazing to broadcast our expanded programming from this exciting venue at the center of Downtown.”
the D’s casino refresh will include the following:
• The Debut of BarCanada – BarCanada will deliver the Canadian spirit of hockey and hops for an unforgettable game watching experience. Conceptualized by design firm PGAL, the 2,000-square-foot, 20-seat bar will span 60 feet. Fans will be able to catch major sporting events in a space surrounded by 85-inch TVs and adorned with Art-Deco-inspired designs like maple-leaf embroidered chairs and red interiors. Big groups also can gather at communal tables with up to 38 seats to share Canadian-inspired eats and libations from D Grill.
• High-Tech Wagering – Growing by 800 square feet, Circa Sports at the D will introduce additional betting stations and one self-serve kiosk for ultimate convenience. Circa Sports – Stevens’ sports betting venture – debuted in 2019 and brings a customer-first approach with a team of the country’s top oddsmakers. It also boasts the first two-sided futures odds for major professional sports leagues, as well as competitive wagering menus and higher app limits. The sportsbook will continue to give spectators quality offerings, such as vast TVs and bar-top games that make betting more accessible.
• All-New Keno and High-Limit Spaces – Second-floor casino guests will enjoy the D’s 600-square-foot keno area and 1,340 square feet of high-limit slots, with an opulent VIP lounge. The keno space will showcase booth seating, individual seats for 16 people and modern technology. The high-limit slots and lounge will take center stage with thoughtful wall design and décor, including artistic light sculptures. In addition to the new keno and high limit areas, 9,000 square feet of the casino floor will be refreshed with new carpet, ceiling design, lighting and modern wallcoverings.
Press release: LAS VEGAS – On Sunday, February 2, more than 8,500 football fans gathered at Downtown Las Vegas Events Center to cheer on their favorite teams for the fifth annual Biggest Big Game Bash watch party. Hosting one of the largest crowds in the city, the event featured delicious food vendors, VIP Man Caves and massive stadium-style screens that provided guests with fantastic views of the game.
“Every year, we aim to throw the ultimate viewing party and 2020 proved to be one our best yet,” said Downtown Las Vegas Events Center CEO and Owner Derek Stevens. “It was great to witness the excitement and energy surrounding the biggest game of the year.”
From live odds at Circa Sports to celebratory ice-cold beers, guests filled the venue to enjoy its entertainment offerings. This included tableside food and beverage options from American Coney Island, Project BBQ and more, as well as Man Caves boasting plush couches, corn hole and 70-inch TVs.
Across the street, visitors packed the D Las Vegas at the property’s exclusive Man Cave spaces and Detroit Ballroom. Both options offered stadium-style food, on-site betting and state-of-the-art surround sound.
Downtown Las Vegas Events Center continues to be a watch party destination for football, hockey and more. For additional information on upcoming watch parties, please visit dlvec.com.
There’s always something new to enjoy in Las Vegas. There’s so much to do that even old things can be new in Las Vegas. On Friday I made my first trip close to the top of The Strat. GASP! A friend and I enjoyed some half-priced drinks and snacks at 107 Sky Lounge.