Another Arizona sportsbook operator has found a partner, as the Yavapai-Apache Nation announced it is teaming with IGT PlaySports.
The northern Arizona-based tribe agreed on a multi-year sports betting partnership with IGT that will provide the technology needed to power the tribe’s retail sportsbook at Camp Verde’s Cliff Castle Casino.
The Yavapai-Apache Nation, like all 2021 gaming compact signees, can offer sports betting and additional table games on tribal land without an Arizona Department of Gaming license. They were not among the tribes who could offer new Arizona sports betting apps.
What the Cliff Castle Casino-IGT Partnership Entails
The partnership, which was announced in a tribal press release Thursday, allows IGT to use its self-service PlaySports Kiosks at the retail sportsbook complex. IGT’s technology is in use at 60 other gaming venues in 19 states.
“We believe adding sports betting to Cliff Castle Casino's existing entertainment offering will enable us to attract new patrons, extend and enhance our guests' visits and help us stay competitive in Arizona's rapidly growing sports betting market," Aaron Moss, Cliff Castle Casino General Manager, said in the press release. "Cliff Castle Casino looks forward to introducing our guests and local sports fans to the excitement and quality of an IGT-powered sportsbook."
Cliff Castle a Golden Opportunity for IGT PlaySports
For IGT PlaySports President of Sports Betting Joe Asher, the company’s ability to link up with an established tribal partner like the Yavapai-Apache is a dream come true.
Cliff Castle Casino features a 122-room, six-story hotel, 650 gaming machines, four restaurants, a 20-lane bowling alley and a nightclub. Now the Tribe will be expanding Arizona sports betting in the greater Prescott-Cottonwood region.
"Cliff Castle Casino can be confident in the reliability and scalability of IGT PlaySports technology, and in the abilities of our skilled trading advisory services team to help them maximize the opportunity." Asher said in the release. "Arizona is an exciting sports betting market and we're pleased to see IGT's long-time customer, Cliff Castle Casino, be a part of this growth opportunity."
Which Tribes Still Need Partners in Arizona?
Of the tribes that received sportsbook licenses in August, only the Navajo have yet to announce their sportsbook partner.
The other entity yet to announce a sportsbook partner is the NHL’s Arizona Coyotes, who were one of eight professional sports teams in the state to receive a license from the ADG in August.
That means 16 of the 18 Arizona-based tribes or sports teams who were originally licensed have announced sportsbook partnerships as of Thursday.
Others, like the Yavapai-Apache and Pascua Yaqui (Scientific Gaming) can offer retail sportsbook operations, but are not allowed to participate in mobile sports betting without a license from the ADG.
The Pascua Yaqui opened a retail sportsbook at its Casino Del Sol location in Tucson on Thursday.
The department said it has no timeline for allocating the final two of the 20 available licenses. Those two licenses are tied to professional sports teams.
Here’s a breakdown of the sports betting landscape in Arizona:Sports Betting Licensees
- Ak-Chin Indian Community (Fubo Gaming)
- Arizona Cardinals (BetMGM Arizona)*
- Arizona Coyotes (TBA)
- Arizona Diamondbacks (Caesars Sportsbook Arizona)*
- Arizona Rattlers (BetRivers Arizona)*
- Fort Mohave Indian Tribe (SuperBook Sports)
- Ft. McDowell Yavapai Nation (Betfred Arizona)
- Hualapai Tribe (Golden Nugget)
- Navajo Nation (TBA)
- Phoenix Mercury (Bally’s Sports Arizona)
- Phoenix Speedway (Penn National Interactive/Barstool Sports)*
- Phoenix Suns (FanDuel Sportsbook Arizona)*
- Quechan Tribe (Unibet Arizona)*
- San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe (Digital Gaming)
- San Carlos Apache Tribe (WynnBET Arizona)*
- Tohono O’odham Nation (Kambi Group)
- Tonto Apache Tribe (TwinSpires Sportsbook Arizona)*
- TPC Scottsdale (DraftKings Sportsbook Arizona)*
- Gila River Indian Community (BetMGM Arizona)*
- Pascua Yaqui Tribe (Scientific Gaming)*
- White Mountain Apache Tribe (MaximBet)
- Yavapai-Apache Nation (IGT PlaySports)
* — Have launched operations