New Jersey politicians are working to quickly pass a sportsbetting bill, but legislation may bar the Golden Nugget Atlantic City from offering the service, as the casino's owner owns a professional basketball team.
Tilman Fertitta owns the Houston Rockets of the NBA as well as Landry's, which owns the Golden Nugget Casino. The bill currently working its way through the legislature stipulates that anyone owning more than 10% of a sports team shall not be permitted from running a sportsbetting business. The move was made in an attempt to ensure integrity to keep teams from fixing games.
If the Golden Nugget were to pursue sportsbetting in the Garden State, Fetitta would have to divest himself of his interest in the Rockets. Technically speaking, the Golden Nugget could get the license right away, but Fertitta would have to sell the team within a one year period. If he were unable to do so, the Golden Nugget would lose its gaming license and be forced to repay all of the money they brought in with sportsbetting during the year.
Other casinos in New Jersey including Caesars and MGM have stakes in pro sports teams, but the stakes fall well below the threshold needed to sell off ownership stakes.
The final votes for sportsbetting legislation are to be taken today, with the state looking to begin offering the service imminently after it's signed into law.