Golden Nugget Online is one of the reasons why its parent company and namesake has enjoyed massive financial online casino success in New Jersey so far in 2019. Now, Golden Nugget's sports betting platform could be adding an much-needed dynamic if proposed legislation passes, finally allowing Golden Nugget Casino to offer NBA betting odds to its players.
Bill A 5463, proposed by New Jersey democratic assemblyman Raj Mukherji and co-sponsored by his colleague John Burzichelli, would permit Golden Nugget Online Sportsbook to make NBA betting lines eligible for the first time since NJ sports betting was launched by the platform this past February. Golden Nugget owner Tilman Fertitta also holds an ownership stake in the NBA’s Houston Rockets and to this point, hasn’t been able to let his sportsbook offer NBA lines due to negative repercussions, both financial and media-related.
Currently, Fertitta and Golden Nugget Online is the only New Jersey sports betting site operator left out in the cold on NBA betting because of other business ventures. Part of the goal of this legislation is to give everyone a level playing field, since that is not currently the case.
Golden Nugget Hopes To Offer NBA Betting Odds If Law Changes
As the New Jersey laws currently reads, owners with a 10 percent stake or higher in a sports team cannot accept wagers across that entire sport.
The new bill sponsored by Mukherji and Burzichelli would allow owners with a 10 percent stake or more in a sports governing body accept wagers on an event in which the owner’s team is not a participant. Basically, the legislation would permit Golden Nugget to accept NBA betting picks for games that didn’t include the Rockets.
The allowance of Golden Nugget to take NBA bets on games in which the Rockets are not participating complies with how Nevada sports betting rules are written and enforced, and Mukherji thinks the Garden State has a chance to advance to an even higher level if things are done the right way.
“New Jersey’s sports wagering industry is new and fledgling, but if we take the handcuffs off, it could surpass Nevada as the largest market in the country within a few years,” said Mukherji according to the Associated Press.
Does Golden Nugget Online Need NBA Betting Lines?
The short and simple answer is yes, it does. Despite legal sports betting being allowed since the summer of 2018, Golden Nugget Online Sportsbook just recently went live in February 2019 during the heart of the pro basketball season. NBA wagers are said to account for an average of around 15 percent total handle for sports betting operators across the country, meaning the AC casino has been losing out on quite a bit of business, allowing other Atlantic City casinos to benefit.
While the $1,000 penalty for accepting NJ sports betting wagers illegally is a tiny amount in relative terms, the backlash that matters more would’ve come from unwanted media attention and the potential negative result it could have on the company moving forward. Golden Nugget Online Casino already lost one business opportunity when Rush Street Games (which operates SugarHouse Sportsbook NJ) backed out of a partnership deal due to the restrictions placed by NJ sports betting law, and understandably didn’t want to impact its future endeavors by breaking the law.
The sports betting side of the business won’t dominate the industry the same way Golden Nugget has among other online casinos in New Jersey. Golden Nugget Online has generated over $65 million in revenue in 2019, far and away above any Garden State peers. The hope for Fertitta and Golden Nugget Sportsbook, however, is that the platform can begin to turn a corner and compete with its peers now that it can accept bets from all major sports.