Hard Rock Atlantic City Ready for Sports Betting Launch as Super Bowl 53 Hovers

Posted on: January 28, 2019, 05:15h. 

Last updated on: January 28, 2019, 05:20h.

Atlantic City’s Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is getting ready for Super Bowl 53 with a newly approved sports book that should be taking action just in time for Sunday’s big race between the Pats and the Rams in Atlanta.

Super Bowl 53 at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday, Feb. 3 has spurred Atlantic City’s Hard Rock to get its piece of the sports betting pie. (Image: allevents.in)

The Hard Rock originally opened in June without a sports book, instead initially focusing on entertainment, with plans to have over 300 live concerts in a 7,000-seat theater during its first year of operation.

Getting Skin in the Game

But with major SB 53 money on the line, executives have decided that good old-fashioned sports betting might be worth getting on board with, just in the nick of time.

The Hard Rock online sports wagering site is now fully approved,” Kerry Langan, a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE), told Casino.org on Monday.

The casino got permission on Friday from the NJDGE to start testing equipment for online sports betting, with testing officially commencing on Saturday. The Boardwalk casino is expected to announce details about in-person sports betting within days, Hard Rock President Joe Lupo told the AP.

Gaming Innovation Group will partner up to provide the sports book which will join the167,000-square-foot casino space that also offers 2,100 slot machines and 120 table games.

New Jersey Paved the Way

The path to sports betting in New Jersey came about last May, when the Garden State won a case before the US Supreme Court to allow states to legalize sports wagering, when the high court, in a 6-to-3 decision, overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA).

“Congress can regulate sports gambling directly, but if it elects not to do so, each State is free to act on its own,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the court’s majority opinion. “Our job is to interpret the law Congress has enacted and decide whether it is consistent with the Constitution. PASPA is not.”

And since last June — when sports betting kicked off in New Jersey — sports wagering gross revenue in New Jersey at both casinos and racetracks totaled $94 million in 2018. Of that, the casino portion totaled almost $50.2 million.

Sports betting gross revenue is defined as the sum of all wagers, less the payouts on winning bets.

The Hard Rock is the eighth Atlantic City casino to offer sports betting. It joins Bally’s AC, the Borgata, Golden Nugget, Harrah’s, Ocean Resort, Resorts, and Tropicana. Those that have internet sports betting include: Bally’s, Borgata, Golden Nugget, Ocean Resort – as well as Resorts Digital.

Gaming analyst Dustin Gouker told Reuters last year that he expects New Jersey to be a much larger sports betting market than Nevada once the market matures.

Sports betting could be coming to as many as 25 states in the coming years, Casino.org predicted last year.