ESPN and Caesars Entertainment announced a new partnership on Tuesday. Under the new deal, Caesars Sportsbook odds and content will be exclusively featured on ESPN programming, removing all other sportsbook branding from ESPN networks and websites.
Plus, a new ESPN broadcast studio will be built at The Linq, a Caesars property in Las Vegas.
ESPN will switch to odds from Caesars immediately. The ESPN studio at The Linq is set to open in 2020.
The Linq will be ESPN’s Las Vegas home
The Linq opened a new sportsbook last year. “The Book” is a unique Las Vegas sportsbook concept that will soon be home to both sports bettors and sports programming on ESPN.
ESPN will also use content from this studio on digital and social shows as well as ESPN.com and the ESPN app. Other sports betting content currently on ESPN includes:
- Behind the Bets with Doug Kezirian podcast
- Stanford Steve and The Bear podcast
- General sports betting news, discussion segments in signature shows such as SportsCenter and Outside The Lines
- “Bad Beats” on SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt
- ESPN Insider content – PickCenter tools, projections, recommendations, analysis, etc.
Maximum exposure for Caesars Entertainment
The upside of this deal for Caesars Entertainment is maximum exposure. Their odds will be featured on all ESPN platforms. Any sports betting content created for ESPN TV, online and mobile will feature something to the effect of “odds by Caesars.”
This deal is quite a coup for Caesars Entertainment. Sportsbook operators are looking for the most exposure as sports betting becomes legal in more states. Caesars just snagged a deal with one of the most powerful brands in sports to share its sports betting data. There’s also a marketing component to this deal will give Caesars even more exposure.
“We’re really excited about the long-term value this collaboration with ESPN will create and thrilled that, starting immediately, ESPN’s platforms will begin featuring odds information generated by Caesars Entertainment,” said Chris Holdren, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer at Caesars Entertainment. “Millions of sports fans look to ESPN as a sports authority, and Caesars is honored to have been selected for having the best odds to serve those fans. “
Earlier this year Caesars Entertainment struck a similar deal with Turner Broadcasting. Caesars Entertainment should be finishing up construction on the Bleacher Report broadcast studio across the street from The Linq at Caesars Palace any day. Caesars is also the odds provider for Bleacher Report’s mobile and social content.
No sportsbook operator has this kind of media reach.
Broadcasting from casinos and sportsbooks
The deals Caesars has with ESPN and Turner aren’t entirely unique. In fact, there was another broadcast studio announced for a sportsbook today. The FanDuel Sportsbook in New Jersey will be the home to a studio for Sportsgrid – a new 24 hour a day sports betting channel.
One of the first broadcast studios inside of a Las Vegas sportsbook was at Lagasse’s Stadium at The Palazzo. Since then, numerous studios have opened at sportsbooks in different casinos:
- Lagasse’s Stadium at The Palazzo
- USA Today studio at Mandalay Bay
- CG Technology sportsbook at Palms
- VSIN at South Point
- VSIN at Circa (coming in 2020)
There’s also a broadcast studio at the William Hill sportsbook inside Ocean Casino Resort in Atlantic City. In addition to the VSIN studio at Circa, there will be a “radio row” for numerous stations to broadcast from when it opens in December 2020.
Connor Schell, EVP of Content, ESPN says, “Between an increased interest in sports betting among fans, regularly hosting marquee sporting events – like the upcoming NFL Draft and NBA Summer League as well as premier UFC and Top Rank bouts – and the arrival of the Golden Knights and the Raiders, Las Vegas has become an epicenter of sports culture.”
As legalized sports betting expands across the US, expect to see more partnerships with media outlets and sportsbook operators.