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Volume 25 No. 175
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Red Sox Excited For Opportunities Sports Betting Could Provide

The Red Sox are "ready to greet" betting on baseball in Massachusetts "with open arms," as legal sports betting in the state could be on the horizon, according to Michael Silverman of the BOSTON HERALD. Red Sox President & CEO Sam Kennedy said, "There will be a positive revenue impact for the team -- how much I don’t know -- but that is absolutely secondary in my opinion to the (increased) engagement, to people following, paying attention, being engaged." Silverman noted the Red Sox already "have a sponsorship deal in place with Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut, but the competition to capture the attention of Red Sox fans will only increase." Rhode Island's Twin Rivers Casino already has its sports book "up and running," while in Massachusetts, the MGM Springfield hotel and casino is "open for business and next year, Everett’s Encore Boston Harbor hotel and casino is slated to open." MLB’s recent deal with MGM "does not prevent the 30 teams from striking their own business arrangements with casinos or sports books." Potential deals with sports books "offer an opportunity for the Red Sox to increase revenues from advertising, signage and sponsorship deals." As more states look to pass sports betting legislation, MLB is "handling lobbying efforts state-by-state, so outside of making introductions to a few key members at the State House, Kennedy said 'there’s not a huge lobby effort by the team.'" The Red Sox are "hopeful that Massachusetts will begin debating sports betting legislation sometime" in '19. If it passes, Kennedy "does not foresee Fenway Park ever having a window where a patron can place a bet" (BOSTON HERALD, 12/2).