The dawn of Arizona sports betting begins at the stroke of midnight Thursday Arizona time.
There will be 18 mobile and retail Arizona sportsbooks in the state to start, with 10 partnered with Arizona tribes and eight more aligning with state-based sports teams. They have been planning for months to go live for NFL betting.
Early registration began on Aug. 28 and bettors could receive Arizona promo codes.
Here’s what Arizonans should know about the new law and sports betting in the state:
Thursday’s launch comes mere days after a legal challenge to the state’s new sports betting law was thrown out.
The challenge was filed by the Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe, which sought to overturn the 2021 gaming compact on the grounds that it was an unconstitutional infringement on the 2002 compact that created many of the tribal gaming rights in the state.
Maricopa County Superior Court Judge James Smith sided with the state over the tribe in the suit, saying the tribe failed to illustrate sufficient evidence that the new compact caused undue harm onto them alone. There could still be an appeal filed.
“The Tribe did not show that H.B. 2772 likely violates the Tribe’s rights regarding event wagering as compared to Sports Franchise Owners,” Smith’s order reads. “The Tribe did not show that public policy favors its requested injunctive relief. It is ordered denying the Tribe’s Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order and a Preliminary Injunction.”
Smith’s court decision also makes note of the last-minute nature of the tribe’s lawsuit, which was filed on Aug. 26, 11 days before the scheduled launch date for sports betting.
“Of course, courts enjoin laws that violate the VPA, constitutional rights, constitutional procedural requirements, and so forth. But courts are mindful of stopping the democratic process, too,” Smith’s ruling reads. “Moreover, the Tribe did not show that H.B. 2772 likely violates the Tribe’s rights regarding event wagering as compared to Sports Franchise Owners. The Tribe did not show that public policy favors its requested injunctive relief.”
Who’s Authorized to Operate in Arizona?
A total of 18 operators, including eight professional sports teams and 10 tribes, received sportsbook licenses in the initial application period.
The operators that received approval included:
FanDuel Arizona (partnered with the Phoenix Suns);
BetMGM Arizona (partnered with Arizona Cardinals and Gila River Community);
DraftKings Arizona (partnered with TPC Scottsdale);
Penn National Gaming/Barstool Sports (partnered with Phoenix International Raceway);
Caesars Arizona (partnered with Arizona Diamondbacks);
Bally’s (partnered with Phoenix Mercury);
Rush Street Interactive/BetRivers Arizona (partnered with Arizona Rattlers);
Arizona Coyotes (TBA)
Fort Mojave Indian Tribe (SuperBook Sports);
Navajo Nation (TBA);
Unibet Arizona (partnered with Quechan Tribe);
Churchill Downs/TwinSpires Arizona (partnered with Tonto Apache Tribe);
Tohono O’odham Nation (TBA)
Golden Nugget (partnered with Hualapai Tribe)
Fubo Gaming (partnered with AK-Chin Indian Community);
Digital Gaming (San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe);
WynnBET Arizona (partnered with San Carlos Apache Tribe);
Betfred Arizona (partnered with Ft. McDowell Yavapai Nation).
Where Can Bettors Place Wagers in Arizona?
Bettors in Arizona can place wagers in-person at the FanDuel Sportsbook location at Footprint Center in downtown Phoenix, home to the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury.
The operator will open its facility Thursday, holding a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the facility during the opening day of sports betting in the state.
Additionally, a Caesars Entertainment sports betting window will be open outside Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Caesars will also have an event Thursday for the opening of sports betting in the state.
The company will open a sportsbook inside the stadium in the former site of Game 7 Grill in time for the start of 2022 MLB betting and regular season, the operator said.
Most other operators will have mobile-only sportsbook operations in place come Thursday, giving Arizona sports bettors a plethora of options going forward.