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Monday, Apr 15, 2024
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Arena-housed sports betting in D.C. could spark conversations throughout U.S.

A Washington D.C sports ownership company and a British betting firm are attempting to create a legal sports betting environment inside D.C’s Capital One Arena, according to Forbes

The betting facility would be organized between Monumental Sports, the group that owns both the Washington Wizards and Washington Capitals, and the British betting firm William Hill.

Monumental Sports also owns Capital One Arena, the space where the betting facility would be housed.

Monumental Sports owner Ted Leonsis did not disclose financial specifics to the press but did say to the Wall Street Journal that the partnership with William Hill was to ensure that there were no conflicts of interest in the betting process. Leonsis also said that the facility was intended to span multiple floors, and even offer the option for guests to place bets from their cell phones.

“Think of it as less of a cocktail lounge and more of a modern sports bar and trading desk,” Leonsis told the Washington Post. “We want it to feel like the best Apple store with the Genius Bar because young people are accustomed to that.”

The endeavor is still subject to review from city officials, but could still be a huge step towards allowing legal sports betting inside of sports arenas in the U.S. 

Chief Executive of the William Hill betting firm’s U.S. division Joe Asher told the Washington Post that the surfacing of legal sports betting in scenarios like this is becoming a huge boom in the United States.

“You’ve taken this business that has existed but was largely a black market business outside Nevada, and you’ve made it a legal regulated industry," Asher said in an interview with the Washington Post. “There’s a huge legal industry that is in the process of being created and ramping up.”

This ramping up of business would explain the ambitious move to the United States by William Hill. The betting firm has already opened venues in 10 U.S states.

The project is said to be open by 2020, allowing for the legal arena betting in Washington D.C.

Micah Johnston

Micah Johnston ‘22 is a journalism and media studies double major who has written for The Cluster since his freshman year at Mercer. He has written on and reported for Georgia Public Broadcasting, The Macon Telegraph and The Macon Newsroom on a variety of topics. He received the Center for Collaborative Journalism’s Junior Honors Award for the 2020-2021 academic year. Micah’s other interests include obsessively following Braves and Mariners baseball, constantly listening to all kinds of music and probably eating junk food.


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