MGM Officials Expect ‘Nine or Ten’ Online Sportsbooks In New York

Written By Mike Mazzeo on November 4, 2021 - Last Updated on January 7, 2022
FILE - In this Dec. 2, 2016, file photo, the MGM lion stands in front of the 23-story hotel during a preview tour of the MGM National Harbor hotel and casino in Oxon Hill, Md. Maryland voters are deciding two statewide ballot questions with significant financial ramifications for future years, including whether to allow sports betting and if the legislature should have more power over the state budget. Details such as where sports betting would be allowed will be decided later. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

Executives for MGM Resorts anticipate a market with “nine or ten” online sports betting operators when the winning bids are revealed in New York. That would put the tax rate at either 51% or 50%, respectively.

The question, of course, is whether or not BetMGM will be among them.

As of today, most industry sources expect the two Super Bids to emerge victorious:

  • Super Bid 1: FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, Bally’s
  • Super Bid 2: Caesars, PointsBet, Wynn Bet, BetRivers, Resorts World

“It’s probably going to end up at 50%,” MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle said during the company’s Q3 earnings call this week. “Time will tell, but I think that’s what we’re all contemplating. And it’ll be nine or ten operators, give or take.”

That would seemingly put BetMGM in while leaving Fanatics and Barstool Sportsbook among the proverbial odd men out. His expectations also match the rumors recently reported by NY Post and others.

The NYS Gaming Commission could announce the winning bidders as early as this week.

MGM ready for sports betting in NY

MGM officials are confident that they are additionally “well-positioned” to land a full commercial casino gaming license in New York given that they own and operate video lottery terminals at Empire City in Yonkers.

“Going into it, I’m happy we have a property there,” Hornbuckle said. “We all understand because we’re in New Jersey. It’s one of the more expensive media markets in the world. But I can tell you [New York] is the largest market we will launch into to date with the M life database[…] And we’ll be there from Day 1, which is also critical.”

BetMGM has offered sports betting in New Jersey under the license of Borgata since mid-2018 and is today among the market leaders.

NY regulators not quite ready…

“I think we’ll get off to a great start, and time will tell with sports how much money there is to be made,” Hornbuckle continued. “For us, it’s an omni-channel play, it’s a brand play.

“We’re going to have a huge presence there, and hopefully someday we can get to online (poker) and iCasino, but that’s something for down the road.”

The hope is that the first bet can be placed during the NFL playoffs in January, with online sports betting fully up and running in New York by the Super Bowl on Feb. 13.

Lead photo: Alex Brandon | AP

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Mike Mazzeo

Mike Mazzeo is a contributing writer for PlayNY, reporting on legal sports betting in New York while covering the potential legalization of NY online casinos and poker. He previously wrote for ESPN, the New York Daily News and The Ringer, among others.

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