On Monday, November 4, the NBA officially named DraftKings as an official sports betting partner. The multi-year deal gives DraftKings the right to use NBA betting data, logos, trademarks, and other exclusive materials.
NBA senior vice president Scott Kaufman-Ross stated, “We are excited to team with DraftKings, who has established itself as one of the leaders in the sports betting landscape in the US and has a passionate NBA following.”
The deal puts the NBA at the forefront of the booming sports betting industry in the United States. In July 2018, the NBA became the first major US sports league to strike a gambling partnership when it teamed with MGM Resorts. The league landed a similar agreement with William Hill US in October 2018 as well as a landmark international partnership with Tabcorp in Australia.
The biggest rival for DraftKings in terms of sports betting and daily fantasy sports is FanDuel, which made a deal with the NBA at the close of 2018. Fox Bet New Jersey, which is a rebrand of Betstars, also has an agreement with the NBA.
The NBA’s ever-growing list of betting partners stems from restrictions put in place by the league itself earlier this year. In May 2019, just before the NBA Finals, the organization banned all unauthorized online sportsbooks from using their official data. This has limited the amount of wagers that unaffiliated bookmakers can offer their customers – especially when it comes to live betting, which makes up nearly 70% of all sports wagering action in the US.
As such, the NBA has leveraged data rights to strike a series of favorable agreements with betting companies. The league has a distinct advantage at the bargaining table, as the bookies need the official stat feeds in order to compete with the betting firms that already have access to NBA data.
DraftKings now has agreements with two of America’s leading sports leagues, having recently signed on as an official fantasy sports partner of the NFL.