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Bally’s, WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury Announce Arizona Partnership

Lou Monaco for Bookies.com

Lou Monaco  | 4 mins

Bally’s, WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury Announce Arizona Partnership

Bally's announced Wednesday a 15-year team sponsorship and sports betting partnership with the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury.

It marks the first gaming access deal with a professional women’s sports team and Bally’s now has access to its 15th state, and will be the exclusive sports betting partner of the Mercury starting on Thursday. The announcement comes as Arizona sports betting has been signed into law and is preparing for a potential Sept. 9 launch.

“On behalf of the entire Bally's Corporation, we are honored to be a part of such an important milestone in the history of women's sports,” Soo Kim, chairman of Bally's Corp.’s board of directors, said in a news release. “Maintaining and implementing a strong diversity, equity and inclusion program is a cornerstone of Bally's operational values, and we look forward to promoting those values as part of our sponsorship with the Phoenix Mercury and hope that other major corporations follow in our footsteps.

”We are also excited about the prospect of providing sports fans in Arizona with access to our first-in-class online sports betting platform, and enhancing the way that they engage with their favorite sports pastimes.”

The Bally Bet mobile sportsbook went live in its second state, as Bally’s Corp. announced Tuesday a beta launch in the Iowa sports betting market. Bally Bet last month joined the Colorado sports betting market and has plans to launch in two more legal states by the end of the year.

Online & Retail Sportsbooks Included

Upon the Mercury's receipt of a mobile sports betting license from the Arizona Department of Gaming, Bally's will host and manage an online platform within the state, operate a retail sportsbook in the vicinity of the Phoenix Suns Arena (home of the Mercury) and promote its services within Mercury games.

“We are very excited to partner with Bally's on this enormous step forward in the advancement of women's sports,” Jason Rowley, CEO & president of the Mercury, said in the release. “This agreement represents so much more than a team sponsorship; it is a reflection of our shared values and commitment to investing in diversity, equity and inclusion.

”We could not think of a better way to celebrate the Mercury's 25th year in the WNBA, and what many consider to be the model franchise.”

As part of the agreement, Bally's also becomes a member of the “Phoenix Mercury Changemaker Partners” — a group of companies that value diversity, equity and inclusion, and back their commitment with an investment in women's sports at the highest level. Other members include Fry’s Food Stores, PayPal and Verizon.

“Bally's and the Phoenix Mercury strongly believe that a groundbreaking partnership of this magnitude accelerates the momentum surrounding women's sports, creates a bigger platform for the Mercury, while delivering fan engagement on an unprecedented scale in women's sports,” Rowley said.

Tonight, the Minnesota Lynx (7-7) visit the Mercury (7-7). The Mercury have won two straight games and look to improve on a 2-5 home record as they shoot for a record-tying fourth WNBA title. Mercury teammates Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and Skylar Diggins-Smith all will be heading to Tokyo for the XXXII Summer Olympics, which starts on July 23.

The Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG) is currently working on a final round of draft rules for sports betting to be implemented within the state, all pointing to the NFL opener on Sept. 9 as a tentative start date.

Other Arizona Partnerships

Caesars Entertainment in May announced a partnership with the Arizona for mobile sports betting and to build a brick-and-mortar sportsbook and bar on the plaza adjacent to the team's home, Chase Field, in downtown Phoenix. You can learn more about Caesars in our Caesars sportsbook review.

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DraftKings Sportsbook and the PGA Tour on April 14 announced they would expand their commercial relationship to provide DraftKings market access in Arizona. As part of the agreement, the PGA Tour and DraftKings announced plans to operate a premium retail sportsbook for golf and other betting at TPC Scottsdale, home of the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

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A day after the DraftKings announcement, the Phoenix Suns and FanDuel announced a multiyear market access partnership making the sports betting platform the Suns’ Official Sportsbook and Daily Fantasy Sports Partner.

As part of the deal, FanDuel will open a retail sportsbook inside the Phoenix Suns Arena, expected to be completed in time for the start of the 2021-22 NBA season. The arena is also the home of the Mercury. Check out our FanDuel Sportsbook review to learn more about its offerings.

About the Author

Lou Monaco for Bookies.com
Lou Monaco
Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA.