Legal sports betting arrives in Finger Lakes this Friday, when former NFL star and Syracuse alumnus Donovan McNabb opens the DraftKings Sportsbook at del Lago Resort Casino.
According to Syracuse.com, McNabb, the former Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins and Minnesota Vikings quarterback, will join local officials for the grand opening and place the first bets at the new facility.
The new del Lago sportsbook is located just off the New York State Thruway, about halfway between Syracuse and Rochester in the Finger Lakes Region.
The facility will feature a 6,000-square-foot space with 23 self-service kiosks and cashier stations, alongside a full service bar and restaurant. As well as impressive betting facilities, the newly-opened venue will include 16 massive floor-to-ceiling LED TV screens broadcasting sporting events and a scrolling ticker crammed with live stats for sports fans to soak up.
Fans will also have access to cutting edge technology, including real-time odds boards that continually provide updated data and opportunities for in-game wagers, del Lago confirmed in a press release.
Del Lago partnered with sports industry giant DraftKings for the launch of its sportsbook, which will be the westernmost in the state and closest to urban hubs like Rochester and Buffalo at the time of opening.
The new venue “…marks an incredible step forward for del Lago Resort & Casino,” Lance Young, vice president of gaming operations at del Lago, said in the press release. “We are working closely with our partner DraftKings to ensure the lounge is truly a remarkable, state-of-the-art experience for our guests.”
The DraftKings Sportsbook at del Lago Resort Casino will be the fourth such facility to open in the state this summer, joining similar offerings at Rivers Casino Resort, Tioga Downs, Turning Stone Resort Casino and Point Place Casino.
The openings are landmark moments for the American sports betting landscape, which is experiencing seismic changes following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in May 2018.
New York is the 10th state to legalize sports betting and one of the most coveted markets in the entire country. Early estimates suggest that the Empire State could expect to collect anywhere between $10 million and $30 million per year in tax revenue.
Though the opening of bricks-and-mortar sportsbooks is an important step for New York, the state still lags behind neighbors such as New Jersey because it has yet to legalize online wagers.
With the current facilities located upstate, several hours drive away from New York City, many bettors are more likely to simply cross the Hudson River and place wagers via their smartphones. Nevertheless this latest opening is good news for sports betting fans and the New York market.