NHL Expands Partnerships with FanDuel and BetMGM to Canada
Ontario became the first Canadian province to launch sports betting on Monday, April 4. The first week has been highly eventful in the market with the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship, the Masters, and MLB Opening Day. This week, partners with influential organizations have made the headlines as the Ontario market embraces sports betting. Ahead of the beginning of the playoffs, the NHL has also announced two expanded partnerships with leaders in the industry.
NHL Partners with FanDuel and BetMGM
On Thursday, the National Hockey League announced new arrangements with BetMGM and FanDuel to expand existing partnerships. In a release, NHL SVP and Chief Business Officer Keith Wachtel said that “Canada’s new sports betting landscape presents a tremendous opportunity to further fan engagement and continue our progressive approach with the sports gaming industry.”
As part of the expanded partnerships, both sportsbooks will be allowed to use official NHL branding in both the United States and Canada. FanDuel and BetMGM were the NHL’s first sportsbook partners in the US. FanDuel and BetMGM will now have the right to use official NHL branding in a variety of advertising efforts in Canada, as well as the right to custom content across NHL-controlled media channels.
BetMGM Leaning into Hockey
As the most popular sport in Canada, hockey has already been a significant part of BetMGM’s advertising push in the country. The company has signed partnerships with NHL legend Wayne Gretzky, reigning NHL MVP Connor McDavid, and The Hockey News, arguably the most recognized hockey publication in North America.
According to BetMGM’s release, the company will use the new NHL deal to “produce premium experiences exclusive to customers in Canada.” BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt spoke to how the partnership “accelerated [their] ability to reach hockey fans” and “deliver an enhanced hockey wagering product.”
FanDuel Drives Hockey Engagement
Earlier this week, FanDuel announced a partnership with TSN, a Canadian broadcast channel that allows the company to provide sports betting odds across various sports broadcasts. FanDuel’s existing partnership with the NHL has enabled the sportsbook to hold “prominent camera visible assets” during major events and the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
FanDuel Group CEO Amy Howe described how the expanded partnership with the NHL will allow them to “become true innovators in sports betting with initiatives like the NHL Network’s first-ever Odds Ticker and custom NHL sports betting content for social media.” The expanded partnership will also include elements surrounding FanDuel’s daily fantasy sports platform.
Responsible Gaming Elements
As part of the expanded partnership, FanDuel will continue to emphasize responsible gambling and safer play through their “Play Well” approach, which attempts to ensure no wager placed on any platform will hurt a loved one. BetMGM and the NHL are official partners of the American Gaming Association’s “Have a Game Plan. Bet Responsibly.” public service campaign.
NHL’s OLG Partnership
The NHL also has an existing partnership with Ontario Lottery and Gaming and its sportsbook ProLine+. That partnership enables the NHL to “further engage our avid Canadian fan base” with a “leading gaming entertainment operator for more than four decades,” according to NHL SVP of North American Business Development Kyle McMann.
More Operators Coming in Ontario
As of Thursday, 28 sportsbook operators have been licensed by Ontario’s Alcohol and Gaming Commission. That list includes other big names such as Caesars, PointsBet, BetRivers, bet365, and the Score. As more sportsbooks are added to the Ontario market, it would not be surprising to see the NHL add more partnerships alongside FanDuel, BetMGM, and OLG.