Rush Street Interactive, less than two weeks after Louisiana’s mobile sports betting segment went live, has strengthened its ties with the state. It has signed a number of new agreements, one of the biggest of which is with the New Orleans Pelicans of the NBA. The company’s BetRivers sportsbook is now an official sportsbook partner for the team.
BetRivers Lands at Smoothie King Center
The agreement includes signage at Smoothie King Center, where the Pelicans play, as well as front row seats on the court. It also involves the rebranding and renaming of the Chairman’s Club into the BetRivers Chairman Lounge. This lounge will feature a live NBA odds board, as well.
The Pelicans partnership and BetRivers Chairman Lounge is an RSI investment to enhance fans’ watching and wagering experiences inside the Smoothie King Center, as well as emphasize our commitment to Louisiana sports throughout the state.”
Rush Street CEO Richard Schwartz
Online sportsbooks have been a great source of sponsorship dollars both for the NBA and its teams. DraftKings became the NBA’s official sports betting partner in late 2021. FanDuel and DraftKings were also announced as individual NBA betting partners with different sportsbooks.
Casinos and Sports Part of Louisiana Culture
The Pelicans partnered in 2019 with Harrah’s Casino. Harrah’s has been operating a New Orleans gaming facility since 1999. This deal did not include a sportsbook, which opened the door to the Rush Street agreement.
Rush Street, a Chicago-based company, recently signed sports media personality Jimmy Ott and former NFL player Brandon Stokley as brand ambassadors. Ott is an LSU alum and has been a Baton Rouge television and sports radio personality since 1990. On ESPN Radio Baton Rouge, he hosts “Jimmy Ott’s Gametime presented By BetRivers,” where he offers handicapping content for football fans.
Stokely, a native of Lafayette, LA, and a former player for the University of Louisiana, will provide “football analysis” and “betting content” to BetRivers, according to the release. The two-time Super Bowl champ spent 14 years in the NFL before retiring.
Rush Street’s investment in Louisiana follows the launch of mobile sports betting in many of Louisiana’s parishes on January 28, 2018. BetRivers was one of the few betting apps that went live on launch. The state police are currently vetting 41 potential mobile platforms, which could be approved as their applications reach the top of the stack.