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Best of Dan Ippolito

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Casino City’s Friday Five: Jackpot and sports betting edition

30 November 2018

Another U.S. state opened its first sportsbook this week. We also have two jackpot winners, MGM Resorts partnering with Major League Baseball and a New York casino resort announcing an expansion.

Let’s begin with the jackpots:

5. $100,000 win at Sycuan Casino
San Diego resident Kristina W. won a massive $100,000 jackpot while playing Bingo Bonanza at Sycuan Casino.

Additionally, there have been several other recent jackpot winners this month at Sycuan. Pauline C. won $45,762.49 while playing the Lightning Link slot machine, and two other lucky winners took home $61,301.57 while playing the Fire Bull Xtreme Jackpots slot machine and $43,996.84 while playing the Touch Easy Keno slot machine, respectively.


4. Bethard mobile player hits €2.2 million
A Bethard Casino mobile slots player in Sweden unwrapped the ultimate early Christmas present by winning SEK 23.2 million (€2.2 million) on Yggdrasil’s Empire Fortune progressive jackpot. The jackpot took place less than two weeks after the supplier’s record jackpot of €7.8 million fell on Joker Millions. The player won the huge sum after a bet of just €4.

Last week's win comes just 13 days after Yggdrasil’s largest jackpot ever fell to another Swedish player, also from a mobile phone. Yggdrasil’s two progressive jackpots, Empire Fortune and Jackpot Millions, have now rewarded a total of €29 million since 2015.

Fredrik Elmqvist, CEO at Yggdrasil, said, “To see a second jackpot won, less than two weeks after our prior jackpot was awarded, is absolutely mind-blowing. This means that a massive €10 million has been won in 13 days, and that two very lucky players are going to have the best Christmas ever!”



3. Resorts World Catskills announces expansion of campus

Resorts World Catskills, New York’s newest and closest casino resort to Manhattan, unveiled plans to open the integrated campus destination’s second hospitality complex. The Alder, a new lifestyle hotel, will offer guests an exciting new way to stay and play in the heart of the picturesque Catskill Mountains. The Alder is now taking reservations and will officially open its doors in December.

This new lifestyle hotel will offer a host of exciting amenities and offerings to its guests, including retail, entertainment, and food and beverage options throughout its first floor. The Alder’s name evokes the majestic alder tree, a part of the birch family native to the rich ecosystem of the Catskills, known for providing shelter and protection to neighboring wildlife while enriching the natural environment.

The Alder will offer a distinct hospitality experience while serving as an extension of the existing scenic destination resort campus, providing guests full access to the services and amenities of Resorts World Catskills including 100,000 square feet of gaming space, 10 dynamic dining experiences and the Crystal Life Spa. Guests of The Alder will also have full access to the luxury indoor pool and fitness center within the Resorts World Catskills hotel.

The Alder marks the next phase in the growth of Resorts World Catskills. In addition to the hotel, The Alder will feature a dining and an entertainment venue for resort guests, which will be announced in the coming weeks.

2. MLB and MGM Resorts for partnership in US and Japan
Major League Baseball (MLB) and MGM Resorts International announced the formation of an all-inclusive partnership agreement that combines the MLB brand with MGM Resorts and playMGM brands across league and team sponsorships, data usage in gaming, promotion across MLB-owned media platforms, and domestic and international activations at MLB events.

The new multi-year agreement designates MGM Resorts as the first "Official Gaming Partner of MLB" and "Official Entertainment Partner of MLB."

As an official sponsor of Major League Baseball, MGM Resorts will domestically promote its brand and gaming options across MLB's digital and broadcast platforms, including MLB Network, MLB.com, the MLB At Bat app and additional fan engagement offerings to be jointly developed.

MGM Resorts will be identified as an MLB-Authorized Gaming Operator and utilize MLB's official statistics feed, on a non-exclusive basis, throughout its digital and live domestic sports gaming options. MLB will also make enhanced statistics available to MGM on an exclusive basis. In addition, MGM Resorts and MLB will work together on comprehensive responsible gaming measures and work to protect the integrity of the game both on and off the field.

In Japan, MGM Resorts will be an official partner at grassroots baseball events like the MLB Road Show. An interactive fan experience that celebrates Major League Baseball, MLB Road Show tours throughout Japan giving fans an opportunity to participate in baseball activities including batting and pitching cages, base running stations, virtual reality, and a baseball museum.



1. Rhode Island becomes eighth US state to offer sports betting
Twin River Casino in Rhode Island officially opened its new sportsbook on Monday, making the Ocean State the first state in New England to offer sports betting.
Since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal ban on sports was unconstitutional and abolished the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) back in May, Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Mexico and now Rhode Island have joined Nevada in offering legalized sports wagering.

IGT and Scientific Games are the state’s official sports betting partners and Rhode Island’s lottery oversees the operation. The state receives 51% of the revenue from sports betting, with the vendors getting 32% and the casino receiving 17%.

Monday marked the launch the first phase, with a small counter and three ticket windows accepting single-game wagers on the third floor of the casino near the racing simulcast area. The sports betting menu is expected to expand in the coming days, with the addition of future bets and other sports than just football, basketball and hockey.

Phase 2 is under construction on the second floor, down the hall from the popular poker room, in an area that once served as the grandstand for the former Lincoln Downs racetrack in the 1940s. When completed in mid-December, the 3,600-square-foot space will have dedicated sports betting counters and food and beverage service, odds boards, and over 100 televisions of varying sizes.

On Monday, about 35 miles away, Twin River's sister property, Tiverton Casino Hotel, which celebrated its grand opening on Labor Day Weekend, will also launch sports betting.

Casino City’s Friday Five: Jackpot and sports betting edition is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.
Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports. Email him at daniel@casinocity.com, or follow him at @casinocity_dan on Twitter.
Dan Ippolito
As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports. Email him at daniel@casinocity.com, or follow him at @casinocity_dan on Twitter.