Thursday, October 18, 2018 5:48 PM

Your Guide To NJ Sports Betting As NFL And NBA Games Pick Up The Pace

Your Guide To NJ Sports Betting As NFL And NBA Games Pick Up The Pace
compass

For now, there are 8 retail sportsbooks and 8 online sports betting apps in New Jersey. But NJ sports betting is just getting started.

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Aruze Gaming Receives Gold Medal for Muso Triple-27 as the Best Slot Product at G2E 2018

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Aruze Gaming Receives Gold Medal for Muso Triple-27 as the Best Slot Product at G2E 2018
Aruze Gaming receives gold medal for Muso Triple-27 as the Best Slot Product at the Global Gaming Expo 2018

Praesepe raise charitable donation to £1m for CHIPS!

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Praesepe raise charitable donation to £1m for CHIPS!

Praesepe, the Gauselmann owned company that operates the Cashino brand of adult gaming centres and Beacon Bingo clubs in the UK

Is A Merger Between Caesars And Golden Nugget In The Cards?

Is A Merger Between Caesars And Golden Nugget In The Cards?
Caesars Golden Nugget merger

Tilman Fertitta, the owner of the Golden Nugget, has reportedly approached Caesars about a possible reverse merger.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2018 6:12 PM

Majority of New Gambling Accounts in Sweden Registered with International Operators, Report Finds

Casino News Daily
Majority of New Gambling Accounts in Sweden Registered with International Operators, Report Finds

Off-shore gambling operators have proved particularly popular with Swedish gamblers over the past year

Accounts registered with international online gambling operators represent 60% of all online gambling registrations made over the past 12 months in Sweden, local consultancy firm Mediavision reported earlier today.

The firm also found that nearly 60% of all Swedes aged between 18-74 have an online gambling account, up 12% from last year. Svenska Spel, the state-run operator that holds the monopoly over most of the gambling services provided on the country’s territory, still holds the largest share of all registered accounts. Mediavision reported that combined, all regulated gambling operators account for around 58% of all registered gambling accounts.

However, international operators seem to be gaining momentum as approximately 60% of all new registrations made over the past twelve months were namely with companies targeting Swedish gamblers from outside the country.

Commenting on the latest trends discovered by the consultancy firm, Mediavision’s Mazyar Sajjadi said that a possible explanation why new and existing customers seem to be more and more drawn to international gambling operators is “their marketing with special offers and deposit bonuses.” Licensed Swedish operators are banned from offering any such bonuses to lure customers, under the country’s current laws.

Sweden’s new gambling regulations are just a couple of months away from taking effect. From January 1, 2019 onwards, international operators will be able to operate legally in the country as long as they have obtained a license from the local gambling regulator, Lotteriinspektionen.

The Swedish Gambling Authority launched the application process in July and has recently announced that it has so far received 55 applications from international gambling companies that are interested to operate in the newly regulated local market.

Local News Outlet Slapped with Fine over Gambling Ads

News emerged late last week that the Administrative Court has slapped a SEK100,000 fine on local news outlet Nyheter24 for failing to remove links featured on its website that were referring to international online gambling websites that were not licensed in Sweden.

The case was first brought to media attention back in 2014 when Lotteriinspektionen filed for an injunction against the media outlet. In October 2017, the Supreme Administrative Court ruled in favor of the regulatory body. However, Nyheter24 was found to have not removed the links to the internationally licensed online gambling products.

Swedish media outlets have for years been heavily criticized for featuring gambling-related advertisements. However, they felt encouraged to do so after the European Commission had declared the country’s monopoly system over the provision of gambling services one that violated EU principles for free trade and movement of goods and services among member states.

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With NBA Bets In Mind, SugarHouse Sportsbook Jumps Ship From Golden Nugget To Monmouth

With NBA Bets In Mind, SugarHouse Sportsbook Jumps Ship From Golden Nugget To Monmouth
jump ship

SugarHouse Sportsbook moved its NJ sports betting site to Monmouth's license because of NBA betting restrictions imposed on its partner, Golden Nugget.

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Mohammed Nuwwarah Takes Down WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond $600 H.O.R.S.E.

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Mohammed Nuwwarah Takes Down WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond $600 H.O.R.S.E.

Nuwwarah captures debut WSOP Circuit title on his 32nd birthday

Mohammed Nuwwarah, an Omaha, Nebraska resident with solid poker background, won last night the $600 buy-in H.O.R.S.E. that played as part of the ongoing WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond series. The player captured a gold ring and a cash prize of $14,008 after besting 95 like-minded fans of mixed game formats.

Nuwwarah is a member of a poker media by trade, but playing the game is also something he enjoys and apparently is good at. He told WSOP staff after his triumph last night that he likes all Stud games and that he is not a big Omaha 8 or Better fan. Ironically, he won his first piece of WSOP Circuit gold namely while playing an Omaha 8 or Better hand, so he dislikes the game a little less now.

As mentioned, the tournament, marked as Event #7 on the Horseshoe Hammond schedule, featured a 95-strong field that generated a prize pool of $43,775. Apart from the eventual winner, nine more players left with a payout from the H.O.R.S.E. event.

The tournament was played over two days. The second and final day kicked off with 23 lucky hopefuls advancing from Day 1. Cory Chaput led the pack of survivors into the second day of action. He was followed by none other but the eventual champion. Chaput had a total of 181,500 in chips at the start of Day 2, while Nuwwarah held 135,000.

Final Table Highlights

By the time there were just nine players left in contention, Nuwwarah had already swelled his stack and emerged as the chip leader. Nine-handed action kicked off with the eventual champ holding 465,000 in chips, nearly two times more than his nearest competitor – Christopher Grzadziel.

Final table play unfolded relatively quickly until there were just two players left. Michael Hanson was the hopeful whom Nuwwarah faced heads-up. Hanson, too, was vying for his first ring from the series.

What came next was an action-packed three-hour duel that saw Nuwwarah drop to just nine big blinds at some point and then recover to claim the title. Chips swung back and forth for a while and none of the remaining players was happy to give up on the title without a good fight. Eventually, an Omaha 8 or Better hand brought the tournament to a long-anticipated end. Hanson departed with a payout of $8,657 for his runner-up finish.

It is interesting to note that Nuwwarah was a birthday boy yesterday. He said at the beginning of heads-up that he hoped play would extended until after midnight “to outlast the birthday run good.” However, the player emerged as the tournament’s victor five minutes before midnight. Nuwwarah told WSOP staff that he would give his piece of WSOP jewelry to his mother.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018 11:30 PM

Scientific Games Wins Big During Major Gaming Entertainment Industry Events

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Scientific Games Wins Big During Major Gaming Entertainment Industry Events

Company Wins Three Global Gaming Awards at G2E, Wraps Strong Showing at NASPL

Former Kenyan MP Accuses David Baazov of Fraud and Gambling Proceeds Misappropriation

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Former Kenyan MP Accuses David Baazov of Fraud and Gambling Proceeds Misappropriation

Amaya founder and former CEO David Baazov lands in hot water, former Kenyan lawmaker comes forward with serious fraud accusations

A former Kenyan MP accused Amaya Gaming Group (now The Stars Group) and its founder, businessman David Baazov, of misappropriating billions of Kenyan shillings through NIC Bank accounts after the company entered the East African country in 2010.

Kennedy Nyagudi, a former MP representing the city of Kisumu, claimed Amaya had allegedly conspired with the above-mentioned bank to move abroad billions of Kenyan shillings that had been generated by the Canadian gambling giant’s local subsidiary.

Amaya formed its Kenyan subsidiary in 2010. Mr. Nyagudi said in an investigative documentary that aired on KTN News earlier this week that he held a 15% stake in the subsidiary and was listed as one of its Directors. Mr. Baazov reportedly owned the remaining 85% stake in Amaya’s Kenyan branch.

The company launched two products – the M-Lotto Sweepstakes and the Mega Mega Kwachua mamilii lottery – which quickly gained popularity among Kenyan gamblers and raked in millions of Kenyan shillings shortly after they commenced operation.

The proceeds from Mega Mega Kwachua mamilii lottery product, which totaled KSh375 million, according to Kenya’s Betting Control and Licensing Board (BCLB), were initially being wired to Amaya’s account at Equity Bank, Mr. Nyagudi revealed. Under the country’s gambling law, any gambling operation is obligated to contribute 25% of its gross proceeds to a local charity. In the case of Amaya, it was supposed to donate money to the Lion’s Heart Self Help Group. The organization was established to help orphans and widowed women in Kenya’s Siaya County.

By October 2011, the gambling company had not donated the required amount to the charity. The then-Chairman of the BCLB, Kenya’s gambling regulator, filed an affidavit to reveal how much Amaya had collected from its Kenyan lottery operations. According to the affidavit, the company had reaped in the approximate amount of KSh375 million and was supposed to contribute KSh93 million to the Lion’s Heart organization. However, the charity claimed the gambling giant owed it well over KSh73 million.

New Bank Account

Mr. Nyagudi further said that Mr. Baazov then opened new bank accounts in NIC Bank without the former lawmaker’s knowledge and stopped transferring money to the Equity Bank accounts. The new accounts were opened in Mr. Nyagudi’s name and were allegedly used by the Canadian-Israeli businessman and associates of his to siphon around KSh500 billion out of Kenya.

The former Kenyan lawmaker is now suing Mr. Baazov, his alleged accomplices and NIC Bank, accusing the businessman of fraud and the bank of helping him to conduct improper money transfers. Mr. Nyagudi also said earlier this week that he has filed a notice to Kenya’s Director of Public Prosecutions to inform them that he intends to prosecute the bank privately for failing to disclose details about Mr. Baazov and his accounts. NIC Bank had previously been issued an order to provide details about Amaya’s Kenyan operation and about the Canadian-Israeli businessman’s dealings but had refused to do so and the agencies responsible for prosecution had failed to take further action.

Mr. Baazov was up until recently the subject of insider trading investigation and prosecution in his home country. The businessman was probed for allegedly trading inside information about the company prior to Amaya’s $4.9-billion acquisition of The Rational Group, parent company of the PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker brands, and thus affecting his company’s stock price.

The Quebec securities watchdog, Autorit√© des marches financiers (AMF), brought 23 charges against Mr. Baazov in March 2016, which marked the beginning of a lengthy trial. The Court of Quebec decided to stay the legal proceedings against the businessman this past summer, arguing that the AMF had made “repeated errors” and showed a “lack of rigor” over the course of its investigation.

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Genting UK Launch Brand New Gaming Product to Market

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Genting UK Launch Brand New Gaming Product to Market

Leading casino operator Genting UK has launched a brand-new tournament game called SpinSplosion®. The first of its kind in the UK.

Sports Betting Debate Gains Momentum in Illinois

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Sports Betting Debate Gains Momentum in Illinois

Adding sports betting to the mix of gambling expansion opportunities makes sense, says Illinois legislator

Gambling expansion is once again on the discussion table in Illinois as the second of two hearings on the matter is set to take place later this week. This time, state lawmakers are set to discuss the potential legalization of sports betting, online gambling, and daily fantasy sports.

Sports betting has been creating the biggest buzz within the US gambling industry this year, following the May 14 ruling of the US Supreme Court that effectively lifted a long-standing federal ban on the provision of wagering services and left it to individual states to decide whether they want to legalize the activity or to stray from the sports betting bandwagon.

Efforts for the potential expansion of Illinois’ gambling industry have emerged on several occasions in recent years but without much success as bills on the matter have never survived committee consideration.

It was not any different this year, except for the fact that a gambling expansion bill (SB 7) presented earlier in 2018 by Rep. Bob Rita has turned into the basis for the ongoing discussions. A previous hearing was held in August when state lawmakers sought input from stakeholders during a four-hour event in Chicago.

That hearing considered the potential construction of more casinos around the state as well as the addition of slot machines and similar gaming devices at the state’s struggling horse racing tracks, among other things.

The upcoming hearing, scheduled to take place on Wednesday in the state’s capital Springfield, will be primarily concerned with sports betting, online gambling, and daily fantasy sports.

Sports Betting Makes Sense

According to State Rep. Mike Zalewski, who recently spoke with local news outlet the Herald & Review, the addition of sports betting in the gambling expansion mix only makes sense. Rep. Zalewski currently chairs the House Revenue Committee. The lawmaker has further pointed out that wagering could be “the tie than binds the different industries” and the “bricks and mortar” that would form a “unifying approach going forward”.

A recent report on gambling in the state compiled by the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability dwelt briefly on the potential legalization of sports betting in the state. The report reads that “it is difficult to predict the revenue potential” of the gaming services discussed by the Legislature as the final product and its taxation are not determined. However, “each of [the] formats would create a new revenue source for the state.”

Additional revenue is certainly something Illinois needs as it once again struggled to create a spending plan for the next financial year and close a deficit of more than $1 billion.

New Jersey reported last week that it has recorded sports betting revenue of nearly $24 million in September and has handled around $184 million in wagers. According to Rep. Zalewski, $184 million in betting handle “in a state like New Jersey” presents real opportunity for Illinois. The lawmaker added that if mobile betting is added to the mix, “then you would talk about a real opportunity to have revenue affect the state.” Of the $184 million wagered in New Jersey last month, a total of $104 million was bet online or via mobile devices.

The Illinois sports betting hearing is scheduled for noon local time on Wednesday in the capital Springfield. While the hearing is an important step, a sports betting legislation will not be presented and potentially voted on before January 2019 when the new legislative session of the state Legislature is set to commence.

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Monday, October 15, 2018 6:15 PM

Atlantic City Casino Revenue Took An Expected, But Larger Than Usual, Dip

Atlantic City Casino Revenue Took An Expected, But Larger Than Usual, Dip
chip and dip

Despite recent gains, revenue figures for Atlantic City casinos slid in September with only one casino posting a positive year-over-year figure.

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Boyd Buys Four Pinnacle Casinos; Penn National Completes $2.8-Billion Pinnacle Acquisition

Casino News Daily
Boyd Buys Four Pinnacle Casinos; Penn National Completes $2.8-Billion Pinnacle Acquisition

Boyd completes purchase of four Pinnacle casinos to pave the way for the closure of Penn National’s $2.8-billion acquisition of Pinnacle

Major gaming company Boyd Gaming Corporation announced today that it has completed the purchase of four casino properties from rival Pinnacle Entertainment for the approximate amount of $563.5 million in cash. Boyd has now added Ameristar St. Charles and Ameristar Kansas City in Missouri, Belterra Casino Resort in Florence, Indiana, and Belterra Park in Cincinnati, Ohio to its portfolio of venues.

The deal has resulted in Boyd expanding its US presence across 10 states, with those being Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Including the four above-mentioned casinos, the company now operates 29 properties.

The deal’s completion comes less than a month after Boyd completed the purchase of Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

Commenting on the closure of its latest acquisition deal, Boyd President and CEO Keith Smith said that it has expanded their portfolio significantly and has enhanced their free cash flow profile at a “compelling multiple.” The executive also pointed out that the addition of the four properties has gained them access to three of the largest gaming markets in the Midwest.

As part of the deal, Boyd has entered into a master lease agreement with casino REIT Gaming and Leisure Properties, which is the owner of the Ameristar St. Charles and Ameristar Kansas City and of Belterrra Casino Resort. In addition, Boyd has purchased both the real estate and the operation of Belterra Park to close the acquisition of all four properties.

Penn National Gaming Finalizes Purchase of Pinnacle Entertainment

The closure of Boyd’s acquisition of the four Pinnacle properties paved the way for the completion of another, bigger acquisition deal. Penn National has been able to finalize the purchase of Pinnacle in a deal valued at $2.8 billion.

News about Penn National finally acquiring its rival gaming and hospitality company arrive just over of week after the US Federal Trade Commission blessed the two operators’ marriage. However, Pinnacle was required to complete the sale of the four above-mentioned properties to Boyd in order to be able to join Penn National.

Commenting on the deal’s closure, Penn National CEO Timothy J. Wilmott said in a press release from earlier today that their acquisition of Pinnacle marked a “significant milestone” in the company’s “24-year history of growth.”

Penn National expects to realize cost synergies of around $100 million as a result from the deal and to generate further revenue synergies by “monetizing [their] database; cross marketing [their] properties; sports wagering; and further leveraging [their] social gaming platform.”

The two recently completed deals come as another manifestation of the now very persistent merger and acquisition trend across the US land-based casino sector. Urged by the growing competition, the recent legalization of casino gambling across several states, and other regulatory and non-regulatory challenges, some of the nation’s largest gambling and hospitality companies have made M&A moves to cement their position in the market or gain better position.

Caesars recently bought two Indiana-based properties from Centaur Holdings in a $1.7-billion deal, while Eldorado Resorts closed the acquisition of Tropicana Entertainment for $1.85 billion a few days ago.

The merger and acquisition deals are also anticipated to secure those involved in them with better position for entering the nascent US sports betting market following the May 14 SCOTUS ruling that annulled a long-standing ban on wagering on professional and amateur sports.

And all of the above-mentioned companies are looking to capitalize on sports betting and have moved to prepare themselves for an entry into the market. Penn National recently became one of the first two companies to be issued a sports betting license in Pennsylvania. The operator will run a sportsbook at Hollywood Casino in Dauphin County and an online operation.

Boyd has forged earlier this year a partnership with FanDuel to jointly operate sports betting services across the gaming and hospitality company’s now enlarged portfolio of properties. As for Eldorado, the company has joined forces with British bookmaker William Hill to leverage on the latter’s decades of international sports betting experience.

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Closed Lucky Dragon resort going up for auction

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Closed Lucky Dragon resort going up for auction

The shuttered Lucky Dragon hotel-casino near the north end of the Strip is set to be sold to the highest bidder later this month.

Sunday, October 14, 2018 5:33 AM

Final Flight of WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond Draws Over 1,000 Entrants

Casino News Daily
Final Flight of WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond Draws Over 1,000 Entrants

As many as 220 hopefuls from all five starting flights advance into the final day of action

Flight E, the final one scheduled to be played within the $400 buy-in opening event of the 2018 WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond stop, was completed Saturday at the host casino. More than 1,000 entrants flocked to the venue to register into the tournament and swell its overall field to 2,563.

Day 1E of the event thus drew its largest flight. Registration is now closed and there is just one day left to be played on which a champion will be determined. With the closure of registration into the event, we can now tell how much was generated in prize money and what portion of the prize pool the winner will walk out with.

The tournament featured a guaranteed prize pool of $777,777. The massive field of Flight E helped for the guarantee to be easily surpassed. The total amount of $845,790 was generated from the event’s five flights. The top 220 finishers are set to receive a share of the money, min-cashes starting from $849.

As for the winner, their lion’s share of the prize pool will amount to $124,385. In addition, they will also receive a gold ring from the series. It is yet to be seen whether a new member will join the WSOP Circuit gold ring winners club or the player who claims the opening event title will be someone with previous circuit victories.

Day 1E Highlights

A total of 1,011 entries registered into the tournament through Flight E on Saturday. They generated a prize pool of $333,630 to add to the overall one. As many as 19 levels were played as part of Day 1E and once those were completed, there were just 89 players to have survived through the day. They bagged and tagged for the night and will return to the home casino later today to merge with the hopefuls from the previous two days for one final day of action.

A total of 220 players will return to the host venue to battle it down to a champion. Action is set to resume today at 11 am local time at Horseshoe Hammond which will kindly host the WSOP Circuit for the next week or so. The plan is for a winner to be determined by the end of the day, but it is yet to be seen how action will unfold.

Daniel Kitzis bagged the largest stack at the end of Day 1E with 687,000 in chips. The player will thus enter Day 2 competition second in chips, with Day 1A’s David Larson being the one to top the overall chip counts chart. Larson bagged more than 700,000 at the end of Flight A.

The $400 opening event is one of two on the WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond schedule to feature multiple starting flights, the other one being the $1,700 Main Event. That second tournament is scheduled to kick off on October 19 with the first of two starting flights and $1 million in guaranteed prize money.

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Saturday, October 13, 2018 5:33 AM

Two More Flights of WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond Opening Event Now in the Books

Casino News Daily
Two More Flights of WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond Opening Event Now in the Books

Flights C and D of the WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond $400 No-Limit Hold’em Opening Event bring the overall field to 1,552 contenders

Friday saw the completion of two more starting flights in the $400 buy-in opening event of this year’s WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Hammond stop. Flights C and D together drew a total of 869 entries to bring the overall field to 1,552 contenders.

The tournament features five starting flights this year, one more from its 2017 edition, and a guaranteed prize pool of $777,777, up from $500,000 from last year. There is one more starting flight to take place within the tournament and hopes are that the guarantee will be surpassed.

Flight C of the event was the largest one so far. It attracted 525 entries, or 100 more than Flight A which took place on Thursday at the host casino. The Flight C entrants added the total amount of $181,170 to the overall prize pool. Of all the players who registered via the third starting flight, the top 63 finishers secured a payday of $592.

As many as 19 levels were played within Day 1C, and by their end there were just 50 players left in contention. The final 50 from the third starting flight are to advance into the final Day 2, which will take place Sunday at the host casino. James Gregg emerged as the Flight C chip leader with 400,000, but he was still short of the 717,000 Day 1A’s David Larson bagged.

Flight D Details

The second flight of the day was just as thrilling although a bit less busy. It drew as many as 344 entries who generated a prize pool of $113,520, bringing the overall prize pool to $512,160. Flight D’s top 36 finishers secured a payout on Friday and it amounted to $587.

Only 30 players made it through all the levels played throughout the day to advance into the tournament’s finale. Steve Federspiel accumulated the largest stack of the day, putting 418,000 worth of chips in his bag. He, too, is trailing far behind the overall chip leader. It is yet to be seen whether Larson will remain comfortably on his top spot on the temporary leaderboard after the completion of today’s Flight E, the final one scheduled as part of the tournament.

The survivors from the five starting flights will combine for the first time on Sunday. Day 2 action will kick off at 11 am and play will continue until a winner is determined.

Last year, Jonathan Tamayo (pictured) was crowned the victor. The player collected $101,404 in prize money and his career’s third WSOP Circuit gold ring after outlasting a massive field of 2,349 entrants. The event generated a prize pool of $704,700 last year, beating the $500,000 guarantee.

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