DraftKings Partners With NBA: Boost For In-Play Bettors

DraftKings team up with the NBA

The National Basketball Association has a new official sports betting operator in DFS and sportsbook giant DraftKings.

The Boston-based company becomes the latest sports betting operator to partner with the NBA, who have inked similar deals with MGM Resorts, FanDuel and William Hill, among others

The multi-year deal is effective immediately for the 2019-20 season and gives DraftKings the right to use official betting data as well as NBA logos across its betting platforms, including its hugely popular mobile app.

The app is now live in four states – New Jersey, West Virginia, Indiana and Pennsylvania (from November 4th) – and the provision of official data is likely to prove a boon for bettors, especially the growing number that place bets live in-play.

According to a DraftKings spokesman, NBA games see the most in-play betting action.

Live betting, a critical component of sports betting technology and the future of the industry, is more prevalent on DraftKings Sportsbook for the NBA than any other sport,” he said. “Over 70 percent of NBA bettors have live-wagered, while nearly 45 percent of NBA handle has come from in-play bets.

At the same time, the NBA will work on promoting its partner across several different holdings, including social media, NBA.com and NBA app platforms.

Commenting on the deal, Scott Kaufman-Ross, NBA senior vice president and head of fantasy gaming, said: DraftKings has established itself as one of the leaders in the sports betting landscape in the US and has a passionate NBA following.

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NBA embracing sports betting

The NBA says it will work with DraftKings to protect the integrity of games, with sports betting traditionally cited as the biggest threat by professional and amateur sports leagues.

However, three of the four major leagues – the NFL excluded – have woken up to the revenue opportunities provided by sports betting in the post-PASPA era and the NBA, in particular, has embraced betting as a way of engaging more with fans and growing the sport.

Most recently, the league approved a rule change that requires teams to submit starting lineups at least 30 minutes (from the previous 10) before a game starts, barring injury exceptions.

That was clearly designed to increase betting activity as information is king for most bettors, who can now make more informed decisions and much longer before tip-off.

Other moves made by the NBA in response to the wave of sports betting legalization include the rolling out of gambling ads as part of its broadcasts, as well as improvements made to the official app to cater more for bettors.

NBA strike Monumental deal with William Hill

Further evidence of the sport’s liberal stance towards betting is provided by the recent ground-breaking deal between William Hill and Monumental Sports & Entertainment, owner of the NBA’s Washington Wizards.

Under the deal, William Hill became the exclusive betting partner of the team, as well as the same owner’s Capitals (NHL) and Mystics (WNBA) franchises, and now has plans to construct a sportsbook inside the Wizards’ home, the Capital One Arena – the first of its kind in the US.

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