This week is typically one of the biggest NJ sports betting weeks of the year for sportsbooks, DraftKings Sportsbook included. But thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, there is no March Madness betting.
Jason March, head of gaming For DraftKings, said the casino saw a 34% increase in active players between March 10 and 17. The postponement of North American sports and a lack of land-based gambling are two contributing factors.
As to whether or not the pattern continues, that answer is to be determined.
“It’s hard to tell, so far, there are a few major unknown factors in play here,” said March.
“What I can tell you is that while other entertainment companies are forced to shut down, we remain operational and are looking at a number of new ways to offer our customers with premium entertainment options.”
DraftKings Casino roll out the promos
As with land-based casinos, casino promotions on DraftKings keep the loyal player coming back.
March Mania Roulette (complete with a basketball and net) is one of the newer games. And through March 24, customers have the opportunity to earn bonus credits.
The deal includes $3 in free credit for each day a player bets $3 or more.
And for blackjack players, DraftKings is rolling out a beat the streak promo March 26-29. And customers have a chance of winning a share of $64,000.
But earning it will not be easy. All a player needs to do is get on a winning streak of eight hands or more.
NJ live dealer games not impacted by COVID-19
Those desiring more of a casino floor vibe usually prefer live dealer games.
With AC casinos hotels closed indefinitely, one may assume the same rule applies for NJ live dealer games. For now, though, it’s business as usual except for reduced tables.
“The situation is fluid, and we will continue to assess or operations based on advice from health agencies and government mandates,” said March.
“Most of the tables we are keeping open have infinite seating, so there will always be an option for players to play while the studio is open.”
DraftKings Casino growth
The Boston-based company started as a daily fantasy sports brand. Then in August 2018, DraftKings Sportsbook became the first NJ sports betting app to launch in the Garden State.
The integrated casino platform is the newest of the three products. March said having extremely loyal players helps.
“Online gambling is still relatively new here, so trust is a big factor. Players know that we run fair games, that their money is safe and that they can withdraw their money at any time very easily,” said March.
The Boston-based company started a studio to build the “best games in the industry.”
“We felt that there were opportunities to make the games more fun and to also make the games better from a player experience standpoint,” said March.
“We don’t feel that having the most games online is the most important, we feel that having the most innovative and highest quality games online is what players want. Most importantly, we listen to our players and ultimately strive to give them the absolute best playing experience online.”
Revenue numbers going up
DraftKings Casino operates under the Resorts Digital license along with these brands:
The license holder reported February online gaming revenue of $12.4 million. And besides being an all-time record, it was good enough for an 87.2% year-over-year increase.
Golden Nugget led the market with $19.7 million.
Filling NJ sports betting void
DraftKings, like other operators, is expected to take a financial hit from lack of sports betting.
Other than Australian rules football and NFL futures, the wagering options are currently limited.
With Aussie Rules Football taking place, our friends at @DKNatn break down the sport and ways to bet.
— DraftKings Sportsbook (@DKSportsbook) March 20, 2020
NBA and MLB futures markets remain active. Bettors looking for point spreads and moneylines, however, will have to wait a little longer. The timeline is almost certainly based on the flattening of the curve from the coronavirus.
And when that day finally comes, the DraftKings team will be ready to go.
“For DraftKings, it’s business as usual. While the lights may be out for many of the major sports leagues, we continue to move forward with a full staff hard at work,” said March.
“Of course, as a sports entertainment and technology company, our brand thrives off of the content provided by the leagues and when games resume we’ll be back and ready without having missed a beat.”
Until then, DraftKings Casino is still open 24/7.