If anyone could skate on a fountain in front of a casino in Las Vegas, it would be “The Great One.”
In a new commercial spot for BetMGM, brand ambassador and hockey legend Wayne Gretzky shows how the self-proclaimed “King of Sportsbooks” has an eye on a sport and the country that loves it: ice hockey and Canada. Gretzky became a brand ambassador for BetMGM back in June.
BetMGM promises to launch their popular sportsbook in Canada later this year as the National Hockey League season commences. The 2021-22 NHL season began on October 12 and includes an expansion team in Seattle.
Citizens in Canada have been anxious to use popular sportsbooks to bet on hockey and other sports since laws in the nation were changed to allow for expanded wagering earlier this year.
When Will BetMGM Be Available in Canada?
Canada has offered legal sports betting for many years, but only permitted parlay bets and only through sportsbooks operated by government-sponsored organizations. As a result, sports betting has been less popular in the country as compared to the United States where fans have an opportunity for competitive odds.
In June of 2021, bill C-218 was passed in the senate and became law in Canada in August. Canadian law requires each province to pass their own laws and establish rules that will regulate sports betting. None of the provinces have yet to partner with and launch a major third-party sportsbook like BetMGM, but the presence of Gretzky as their brand ambassador signals it’s coming soon.
The country’s largest province, Ontario, has the PROLINE+ sportsbook currently available. This is a government-operated sportsbook regulated by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG). It allows bettors to place single-event wagers via the government-owned entity’s website.
BetMGM Sets Strategy To Dominate Canada
Gretzky is a national hero in Canada, and he’s regarded by most experts as the greatest hockey player in history. He holds the NHL record for most goals, assists, and points. He also had a record 50 hat tricks in his Hall of Fame career. Gretzky’s status lends even more luster to BetMGM as they are poised to debut their sportsbook in Canada.
Once hockey-crazed fans have more options to place single-game bets in Ontario, and eventually the rest of Canada, the industry should burst with growth. OLG has seen over 3.6 million bets since launching their updated PROLINE+ sportsbook in late August. They noted in a recent survey that 61 percent of bettors place wagers on the NHL.