Which Florida Pro Teams Support Sports Betting and How?

Florida Sports Betting Multi Sport

Florida has the unique honor of being the only state in the country to legalize sports betting and then having it taken back.

On November 22, 2021, a federal judge struck down a sports betting compact between the state and the Seminole Tribe on the grounds of violating gaming laws on tribal lands1.

The deal between the State of Florida and Seminole Tribe for exclusive sports betting rights was the catalyst of opposition from competing casinos. The owners of Magic City Casino and Bonita Springs were the biggest adversaries against the compact.

However, there are many stakeholders that want to see sports betting in Florida become legal soon. Florida pro sports teams are certainly looking forward to a resolution. With how lucrative sports betting has been, owners will want to get involved with Florida casino sites.

As teams sign up for sponsorships and other initiatives with gambling companies, Florida pro sports teams will benefit from legalization in the state. Let’s examine and outline which pro sports teams in Florida currently have a vested interest in sports betting.

Florida Pro Sports Teams Support For Sports Betting

There are nine Florida major sports teams. The NFL leads the way in Florida, with the Miami Dolphins, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The NHL has two teams, as the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers call the Sunshine State home.

The Miami Heat and the Orlando Magic of the NBA round out the nine major sports teams in Florida. While it isn’t a major sport in North America, we also can’t forget about Major League Soccer. Inter Miami and Orlando City continue to become more popular in Florida.

For this Florida sports betting report, we are going to focus on the major Florida sports teams. Beginning with the NFL and then finishing with the NBA, NHL, and MLB, we are evaluating all of their relationships with gambling affiliates as of June 2023.

Despite legal sports betting currently not offered in Florida, some professional sports teams have gambling sponsorships. There is one major franchise in Florida that will be pleased if the compact between the Seminole Tribe and State of Florida proceeds.

Miami Dolphins Sports Betting Affiliations

The Miami Dolphins would have been content with the Seminole Tribe having a monopoly on sports betting in the state. The Dolphins play at Hard Rock Stadium.

Note that the Seminole Tribe owns the Hard Rock brand. They own the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa Bay, Hollywood, Dominican Republic, soon to be Las Vegas, and many others.

Before the Dolphins had any time to take advantage of a sports betting opportunity with the Hard Rock brand, legal sports betting was pulled back in Florida.

If you wanted to bet on sports in Florida through a state approved operator, you would have needed the Hard Rock Sportsbook app. The Hard Rock Sportsbook app is owned by the Seminole Tribe and was part of the agreement between the State of Florida and tribe.

Undoubtedly, the Dolphins would have promotions and advertising campaigns involving the Hard Rock Sportsbook. As soon as sports betting is legal in Florida, expect the Dolphins to have numerous promotions.

It would also make sense for Hard Rock Stadium to have an in-venue sportsbook. Stadiums with sportsbooks inside the facility are quickly becoming more common in the US. The Dolphins and Hard Rock Stadium seem like the perfect match.

Jacksonville Jaguars Sports Betting Affiliations

The Jacksonville Jaguars do not have any active affiliations or sponsorships with sports betting companies. However, Jaguars’ owner, Shad Khan, has discussed the relationship between sports betting and the NFL in the past.

In 2019, Khan noted how the values of franchises in the NFL will be driven up by the presence of sports betting2.

“There’s a huge amount of during-the-event betting,” Khan said. So we look at maybe in-stadium, on a phone [betting], there’ll be a huge amount of activity on that. And obviously, it’s going to drive the values of franchises up.”

Khan, who owns Fulham FC of the English Premier League, is no stranger to sports betting partnerships. Currently, Fulham FC has a sports betting deal with Fitzdares in the UK3.

Given Khan’s stance regarding sports betting previously, and the Fulham FC having a partnership with a sportsbook, it’s safe to assume that the Jaguars will fully support sports betting. We should see a sports betting partnership for the Jaguars in the near future.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sports Betting Affiliations

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were the first team to target the growing esports betting market. In 2021, the Buccaneers paired up with the Esports Entertainment Group.

Esports Entertainment Group is an online esports betting platform. The company has generated partnerships across multiple professional sports leagues over the last few years.

As a sponsor of the Buccaneers, Esports Entertainment Group is the team’s official esports tournament platform provider. Through this relationship, the Buccaneers are responsible for advertising tournaments and events online4.

Currently, the Buccaneers do not have a traditional sports betting sponsor. However, their deal with Esports Entertainment Group suggests that the organization is not against sports betting.

Miami Heat Sports Betting Affiliations

The Miami Heat are the one major sports team in Florida that isn’t waiting on the legal process to clear up in the state. Last year, the Heat signed a partnership with a major online betting site.

In October of 2022, the Heat and Betway inked a multi-year partnership. The deal includes signage and courtside LED advertisements around FTX Arena. Additionally, the agreement makes Betway the Preferred Free to Play Gaming Partner of the Heat.

The CEO of Betway, Anthony Werkman, stated, “Miami is a fantastic city where sport is a huge passion, and we look forward to sharing the thrill with fans of the three-time NBA championship winning side.5

In March, Betway was the official betting partner of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium6. Despite not having legal sports betting at the moment, Betway has not been shy about advertising their product in the state.

As one of the only current major sports teams with a current sports betting partnership in Florida, the Heat are a big supporter of sports betting.

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Orlando Magic Sports Betting Affiliations

At this time, the Orlando Magic do not have a direct affiliation with sports betting companies. In 2014, the Magic signed a partnership deal with FanDuel7.

However, FanDuel was not associated with sports betting at the time. FanDuel was exclusively a daily fantasy sports provider. After sports betting was legalized in the US, FanDuel immediately got into the sports betting space.

After sports betting is legalized in Florida, we will have to see if the Magic renew a relationship with FanDuel or another betting company.

Miami Marlins Sports Betting Affiliations

Currently, the Miami Marlins baseball club is not affiliated with a sports betting firm. However, there is an interesting tidbit that could change that soon. In 2020, the Marlins signed a ten-year partnership with Fanatics.

Since then, Fanatics has entered the sports betting industry. Last month, Fanatics Sportsbook acquired PointsBet U.S. in a $150 million deal. Fanatics is diving heavily into sports betting.

The partnership with Fanatics intends to provide a seamless online and in-ballpark retail experience for fans. At the time of the deal, Marlins CRO commented on the sponsorship8,

“The Fanatics partnership builds on our commitment to enhance the ballpark experience and invest in the cost of the fan experience through ticket, concession, parking, and now merchandise prices. We look forward to working with Fanatics on delivering the best service for both our local and international fanbase and continuing to use retail products as an extension of our Miami Marlins brand.”

As Fanatics expands their sports betting footprint, it would likely include advertising with the Marlins. The partnership runs until 2030. There is plenty of time for the Marlins and Fanatics to collaborate on sports betting.

In 2020, the Marlins landed a sponsorship deal with North American fantasy sports and gambling platform, Monkey Knife Fight. Through the partnership, Monkey Knife Fight will gain exposure online, radio, and television9.

Monkey Knife Fight recently folded operations, but that is not the point. There is a willingness of the Marlins to partner with online sports entertainment firms. If they are fine with fantasy sports, expect the Marlins to transition to sports betting, likely with Fanatics.

Tampa Bay Rays Sports Betting Affiliations

It didn’t take long for Major League Baseball to jump on board with legal sports betting. Shortly after online sports betting was legalized, MLB struck a deal with MGM Resorts International in 201810.

The Marlins and Rays both benefit from this partnership, but how do the Rays as an organization support sports betting?

There is a Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in the Tampa area, so a partnership with the Seminole Tribe was a perfect match. In 2018, the Rays announced the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa 162 Landing.

The Seminole Hard Rock Tampa 162 Landing is an exclusive on-field seating section adjacent to the visitor’s bullpen. Catering and on-field parties for up to 136 people are also available11.

While the sponsorship does not advertise sports betting, we are confident that the Rays will promote the Hard Rock Sportsbook after the federal legal sports betting court case is settled.

Tampa Bay Lightning Sports Betting Affiliations

The NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning stand to benefit from Hard Rock being an exclusive sports betting provider in Florida. The local Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and Lightning have long had a partnership.

In April, the Hard Rock Tampa ran the Hat Trick Giveaway for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Hard Rock was giving away prizes for three weeks straight. All users had to do was share social media posts to be entered into the contest.

This is one of several promotions that the Hard Rock Tampa and Lightning have teamed up to offer fans. Similar to the Rays, expect the Hard Rock Sportsbook to be advertised at Lightning games and online in the future.

The NHL has a positive relationship with sports betting overall. In 2021, the league announced a multi-year partnership between the NHL and Betway.

It was the first deal for Betway with a North American professional sports league12. In addition to Betway, the NHL has partnerships with MGM Resorts and FanDuel.

The Panthers do not have a partnership with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, or other gambling operators, but they benefit from NHL sponsorships.

Where To Bet On Sports In Florida?

The compact between the State of Florida and Seminole Tribe might have been halted for now. However, it doesn’t mean there aren’t any options to bet on sports in Florida.

If you are a resident of the Sunshine State, we recommend betting at the BetUS online sportsbook. At BetUS, sports bettors can bet on all of their favorite Florida pro and collegiate sports teams.

Additionally, BetUS has a huge menu of sporting events offered in their sportsbook. There are also a multitude of different bets available at BetUS. From moneylines, spreads, prop bets, futures, and exotic wagers to win big on.

With a variety of convenient deposit options, Florida sports bettors can get started quickly. As one of the safest online betting sites, BetUS will ensure that your personal information and money is protected.

New users that deposit at BetUS are eligible for a lucrative sign-up bonus. Currently, BetUS is offering a 100% welcome bonus of up to $2,500 to bet on sports.

As an extra treat, the online bookmaker is throwing in a 25% casino bonus of up to $625 for a total of $3,215 in free goodies at BetUS.

BetUS
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Sources

  1. Federal judge overturns Florida’s sports betting compact with the Seminole Tribe | wusf Public Media. Retrieved From “https://wusfnews.wusf.usf.edu/courts-law/2021-11-23/a-federal-judge-has-overturned-floridas-online-sports-betting-compact-with-the-seminole-tribe

  2. Jaguars’ Shad Khan: ‘It’s taken a while’ for owners to warm to betting | Yahoo Finance. Retrieved From “https://ca.news.yahoo.com/jacksonville-jaguars-shad-khan-on-nfl-owners-warming-to-sports-betting-132152915.html

  3. Club Partners | Fulham FC. Retrieved From “https://www.fulhamfc.com/club/club-partners/

  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers partner Esports Entertainment Group | iGB. Retrieved From “https://www.igbnorthamerica.com/tampa-bay-buccaneers-partner-esports-entertainment-group/

  5. Betway agree partnership with the Miami Heat | Betway Insider. Retrieved From “https://blog.betway.com/basketball/super-group-owned-betway-agree-partnership-with-nba-side-miami-heat/

  6. Betway become Miami Open Official Sports Betting Partner | Betway Insider. Retrieved From “https://blog.betway.com/tennis/betway-become-miami-open-official-sports-betting-partner/

  7. Orlando Magic Announce Partnership Deals with Best-In-Class Corporations | NBA. Retrieved From “https://www.nba.com/magic/orlando-magic-announce-partnership-deals-best-class-corporations

  8. Miami Marlins strikes ten-year partnership with Fanatics | Insider Sport. Retrieved From “https://insidersport.com/2020/01/21/miami-marlins-strikes-ten-year-partnership-with-fanatics/

  9. Money Knight Fight adds Miami Marlins to sports portfolio | SportBusiness Sponsorship. Retrieved From “https://sponsorship.sportbusiness.com/news/monkey-knife-fight-adds-miami-marlins-to-sports-portfolio/

  10. Major League Baseball and MGM Resorts International Form Wide-Ranging New Partnership in U.S. and Japan | MGM Resorts International. Retrieved From “https://investors.mgmresorts.com/investors/news-releases/press-release-details/2018/Major-League-Baseball-And-MGM-Resorts-International-Form-Wide-Ranging-New-Partnership-In-US-And-Japan/default.aspx

  11. Seminole Hard Rock Announces 162 Landing In Partnership With Tampa Bay Rays | Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa. Retrieved From “https://blog.seminolehardrocktampa.com/entertainmentblog/seminole-hard-rock-tampa-announces-162-landing-partnership-tampa-bay-rays/

  12. NHL, Betway announce multiyear partnership | NHL. Retrieved From “https://www.nhl.com/news/nhl-betway-sports-betting-multiyear-partnership/c-324686178

About the Author
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Kyle Eve
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Kyle Eve is a seasoned pro of The Sports Geek. Since joining the team in 2012, Kyle, has covered some of the biggest sporting events in the world. From the Super Bowl and World Series to March Madness, the NBA Finals, Kentucky Derby, and many more, Kyle has provided reliable analysis for millions of readers. After dedicating himself to hockey and football in high school, Kyle placed his first sports bet on his 18th birthday. Since then, he has spent his entire adult life devoting himself to becoming the best sports bettor and casino gambler possible. Kyle is from Windsor, ON, Canada

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