The National Hockey League (NHL) has agreed multi-year partnerships with FanDuel and BetMGM for the North American market, including Ontario’s open regulated market.
FanDuel and BetMGM will serve as the first North American sports betting partners of the NHL as they expand their rights into Canada, giving them access and official rights to NHL branding for marketing in legal jurisdictions across Canada and the United States. In addition, both brands will support the NHL with its responsible gambling initiatives.
In Canada, the NHL’s only previous existing partner had been the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, which until just over a week ago was the only legal source of sports betting in Ontario. That deal with OLG’s PROLINE sports betting offering will continue, with OLG an official NHL partner for sports betting on both its PROLINE+ digital sports betting platform and the new PROLINE product at retail lottery outlets across Ontario.
Now, though, the NHL has broadened its field.
“Canada’s new sports betting landscape presents a tremendous opportunity to further fan engagement and continue our progressive approach with the sports gaming industry,” said NHL chief business officer and senior executive vice president Keith Wachtel. “FanDuel was one of our first sports betting partners in the U.S., and we’re thrilled to expand our partnership with a leader in the sportsbook and mobile betting marketplace as we begin our transformative entry into this space in Canada and engage our avid Canadian fan base.”
FanDuel CEO Amy Howe noted that the partnership has already allowed the NHL and FanDuel to collaborate and “become true innovators in sports betting with initiatives like the NHL Network’s first-ever Odds Ticker and custom NHL sports betting content for social media”.
FanDuel has also recently struck a deal with the owner of the Toronto Maple Leafs franchise, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment.
Adam Greenblatt, chief executive of BetMGM, added that the brand is excited to further its relationship with the NHL, “including incorporating some of its all-time greats from Wayne Gretzky to Connor McDavid into our brand marketing”.
In March, Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid became the first major-league sports star to partner with a league sportsbook when he signed on to become a brand ambassador for BetMGM. Canadian hockey icon Wayne Gretzky also promotes the brand.