Bryson DeChambeau Partners with DraftKings, to Wear Logo at MastersBetting
Sports betting in America has come a long way since the Supreme Court overturned the PASPA legislation in May 2018. Professional sports leagues and the NCAA at first fought hard against legalizing sports betting, but quickly began to jump on board as they knew the fight was lost -- and realized the lucrative opportunities sports betting brought to them.
In the last two-plus years, sports betting went from a hated enemy of sports leagues to something that is now fully embraced. Leagues and even teams around the country have partnered with various sports betting companies to ty to capitalize on the potential for additional revenue.
Now, individual players are getting in on the action, too.
Bryson DeChambeau has become the first golfer to partner with a fantasy sports or sports betting company for the Masters tournament. He has partnered with DraftKings, and will wear the company's logo on his hat while he plays at this week's Masters tournament.
DeChambeau is one of golf's most recognizable talents today, with his booming drives drawing oohs and aahs from spectators everywhere. He is the defending champion of the U.S. Open and was one of the favorites entering the Masters tournament.
It's More Than Just a Logo
The PGA Tour paved the way for DeChambeau and others to partner directly with sports betting companies when they changed a policy on June 1 to allow them to do so. Jason Kokrak was actually the first golfer to take advantage of that policy change, as he wore a BetMGM logo on his hat during a Las Vegas tournament called the C.J. Cup. Ironically, Kokrak won that tournament.
For DraftKings, this partnership with one of golf's rising stars is more than just about a logo on a hat during one of the PGA Tour's most prestigious tournaments. The sponsorship deal includes the potential for fan experiential elements. A lucky DraftKings user will have a shot at playing a round of golf with DeChambeau, or getting a golf lesson from him.
Jason Robins, the co-founder and CEO of DraftKings, told Forbes that this collaboration was a "notable new layer of mainstream brand exposure and fan experience" for the company.
Golf is currently the fourth-most popular sport at DraftKings for fantasy sports contest. Betting handle on golf has increased more than 10 times year-over-year as well.
The NBA Started It All
In the U.S., the National Basketball Association was the league that broke through and embraced sports betting once states had the ability to legalize it. In the summer of 2018, the NBA partnered with MGM Resorts International, which paid $25 million for the three-year deal.
Individual teams soon followed that, with the Philadelphia 76ers partnering with Caesars Entertainment. That allowed the company to put logos inside the team's home arena (the Wells Fargo Center) and also allowed for cross-promotion on social media channels.
Eventually, the other major professional sports franchises followed. The National Hockey League also partnered with MGM, and the Vegas Golden Knights and New Jersey Devils partnered with William Hill.
William Hill went one step further when they partnered with the NHL's Washington Capitals. In early 2021, William Hill is set to open a sportsbook within the Capital One Arena, where the Capitals play their home games.
Other partnerships include:
- The Dallas Cowboys with WinStar Casino
- The Baltimore Ravens with Caesars' Horseshoe Baltimore casino
- The New York Jets with MGM and 888 Casino
- Major League Baseball and MGM
More Partnerships to Come?
There's a natural link between sports betting and sports leagues/teams. So, expect to see more creative partnerships between the two entities in the near future. It's also possible more teams will begin to open sportsbooks within their home arenas, as the Washington Capitals have.