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American Gaming Association to get tribes on board PASPA repeal

AGA to speak at NIGA conference

THE US is gearing up for a legalised sports betting industry, provided the Supreme Court rules in favour of the New Jersey sports betting case.

But it isn’t as simple as repealing the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act 1992 (PASPA).

The American Gaming Association (AGA) is aware it needs to get the nation’s native tribes on board and is hoping to persuade them at the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) conference on Thursday in Phoenix.

Sports betting is already on the agenda for the native American tribes, which run land-based casinos in several US states.

The NIGA announced it would be joining the American Sports Betting Coalition, which is an organisation created by the AGA to support the case against PASPA.

However, a week after it announced it would be joining, the NIGA released a statement clarifying its position on PASPA, stating that it did not support repeal of the federal law, and joined to provide a tribe perspective.

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A representative for the AGA will speak alongside the NIGA chairman, Ernie Stevens Junior, in a panel on Thursday, called Sports Betting in the US: What it Means for Tribal Gaming.

The AGA said it would “discuss how the two organisations can continue to work together to overturn the failing federal ban on sports betting” in a media announcement.

The conference comes as the debate heats up over whether the federal law should be repealed, a case spearheaded by the state of New Jersey.

A decision by the US Supreme Court is likely to be determined in 2018, and if New Jersey wins (likely on the basis that PASPA is unconstitutional) the choice to legalise sports betting will be up to the individual states.

Some states have already amended legislation or introduced a bill to amend state law to prepare for a potential win, while tribes are attempting to figure out how they fit in as they operate under federal tribal gaming law.

Tribes should support the repeal given some offshore online bookmakers currently ignore the ban and accept US players, which is the AGA’s main argument.

The ban doesn’t stop players from gambling online, it just pushes them to unregulated markets and blocks states, as well as tribes, from revenue opportunities a regulated industry offers.

Thursday’s panel may shed some light on whether tribes are leaning towards a regulated sports betting industry, however.

Scientific Games acquires NYX Gaming

Scientific Games has announced it is acquiring the NYX Gaming Group for $USD631 million, a deal which is being described as a move to prepare for a legalised sports betting industry in the US.

Scientific said in a press release that the takeover will further strengthen its “leadership position and ability to provide the broadest portfolio of content, technologies and digital products and services for its global Gaming and Lottery customers.”

But it also said that “Scientific Games will now be perfectly positioned to capitalise on future regulatory developments in real-money wagering and sports betting by adding NYX’s industry-leading OpenBet Sportsbook.”

“NYX’s digital Sportsbook can be seamlessly delivered throughout Scientific Games’ global gaming and lottery networks in existing and future regulated US and global markets,” Scientific added in the press release.

NYX CEO, Matt Davey has also shown interest in the US market “in both gaming and sports betting, and we are well positioned for this opportunity, as it develops.

By adding NYX, which already partners with Bet365 and William Hill, to its portfolio, Scientific has positioned the company to be prepared for a regulated sports betting industry and it could be the first among hundreds of suppliers to offer its services to Americans.