Rush Street owner tries to freeze Chicago sports betting


The owner of Rush Street Gaming does not want sports betting in Chicago.

Neil bluhm said to Chicago City Council to On Monday that sports betting in the city would hurt the income of an upcoming casino project.

Rush Street has submitted two bids to build and operate a casino in Chicago.

What Bluhm said

Bluhm said sports betting in the city would attract players and cost a casino $ 61 million one year of lost income. It would cost the city $ 12 million in taxes and state $ 9 million.

“At the end of the day, fewer people will come to the Chicago casino when they can bet on sports in the stadiums, especially in those great nearby places. [at Wrigley Field and the United Center]”Said Bluhm, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

“This means that fewer sports bettors will walk around the casino and play slots and table games and fewer people will go to restaurants in the casino if they can also bet on sports at the same time at the stadium.”

Obstacles for Chicago Sports Betting

Under Illinois sports betting law, sports teams may conduct retail betting and mobile betting within five blocks of their stadiums for a period of time $ 10 million license right. However, this cannot happen in Chicago until the city council passes an ordinance to approve it.

Aldermen Walter burnett and Brian hopkins proposed a measure to this effect earlier this year.

DraftKings is an operator looking to profit from stadium sports betting. The operator has entered into an agreement with the Chicago Cubs open a retail book at Wrigley Field.

Rush Street BetRivers the brand did not announce a similar agreement.

Is Bluhm right?

Bluhm’s cannibalization argument has been widely refuted in places like New Jersey. Mara Georges, a lobbyist for the United center, also disputed Bluhm’s argument.

Georges said United Center research found no evidence that sports betting would cannibalize casino revenues.

“The sports betting business is not just a fraction of the casino business. But in Washington DC, the first district to allow sports betting on professional sports sites, the revenues of neighboring casinos have actually increased, ”said Georges.

Not Bluhm’s first rodeo

Bluhm and Rush Street were no strangers to the Illinois sports betting slowdown. Rush Street was the main supporter of the in-person registration provision in the state, according to DraftKings.

In the meantime, this provision continues to have a moderating effect on the market. Illinois’ September grip fell short of the state record of $ 633.6 million in March despite the return of NFL.

The in-person provision will be removed entirely by March 2022.


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