Sports betting and iGaming provider BetMGM has struck a deal with the Emerald Queen Casino in Washington state to provide its products, meaning another outlet for sports betting in Washington will be available at a future date.
BetMGM made the deal with the Puyallup Tribe to gain access in the Evergreen State; the company already operates either mobile or retail sports betting, or both, in 14 states and Washington D.C., with more pending.
The tribe has two facilities in the Tacoma area – the Emerald Queen Casino I-5 in Tacoma itself and the Emerald Queen Hotel & Casino just a few miles east in the town of Fife. BetMGM products will be available at both places.
"Today's announcement marks another key moment in the expansion of BetMGM as we extend our western footprint into Washington," BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt said in a media release. "The Puyallup Tribe and Emerald Queen Casino are ideal partners for us as they represent the same high-level of service, amenities and experiences that is built into our DNA at BetMGM."
According to the release, the Tacoma casino will offer BetMGM at six ticket windows and 30 betting kiosks, while the Fife casino will offer 22 kiosks.
“We are very excited to be working with BetMGM to bring legal sports betting to sports fans in the Pacific Northwest," Emerald Queen general manager Frank Wright Jr. said. “As industry leaders, EQC and BetMGM are two entertainment powerhouses, and combined we will deliver the ultimate fan experience in sports betting.”
The wheels for such an agreement were set in motion when Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law the rules approved by the Washington Gambling Commission for retail sports betting at some of the state’s tribal casinos. There is no true mobile sports betting market in Washington.
The U.S. Department of the Interior approved several tribes for retail sports betting in September, including the Puyallup.
The state’s first tribal operation to take a legal sports bet was the Snoqualmie Casino, which made a deal with International Gaming Technology in July and took its first bet in time for the NFL regular season. A few other casinos had updated gaming compacts approved in September.
BetMGM competitor FanDuel is also moving into the Washington sports betting market, making a deal in September with the Suquamish Clearwater Casino Resort just outside of Seattle. The Puyallup Tribe’s two casinos are about 30 miles south of Seattle.
It’s no surprise that major sports betting companies are keen to enter Washington even if the state only offers a retail market for now. The NFL’s Seahawks, MLB’s Mariners and Major League Soccer’s Sounders all play in Seattle, as do the Washington Huskies athletic teams. And the NHL’s newest expansion team, the Seattle Kraken, make their regular-season debut next week. The OL Reign of the National Women’s Soccer League plays its games at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma.