Detroit Pistons forward Blake Griffin became the first NBA player to sign a promotional deal with a for-money gaming operator on Friday. Blake Griffin signed with WinView Games and will become the promotional face of the in-game sports predictor platform.
WinView Games allows people to win money if they correctly predict what will happen next in a sporting event. It is an innovative way to edge into the sports betting category.
WinView’s app involves skill-based gaming, which most states do not consider to be gambling. Skill-based trivia games fall into the same category as fantasy sports in most US states.
When asked by ESPN about any concerns the NBA might frown upon such a deal, Blake Griffin pointed to the NBA league office and individual franchises signing deals with sports betting companies. Griffin said, “The NBA has been ahead on this, and I think it’s good for everyone.”
How WinView Trivia Games Work
Competitors answer questions about the next event in a sporting event. Questions might involve whether an NBA team is going to shoot a 3-pointer on the next possession or the over/under on completions on an NFL drive.
Players compete against other app users to see who does best answering questions. Prizes range from a few dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on how many answers a player gets right. WinView Games is one of several apps in the skill-based trivia games category, but being the first to sign an NBA player should give the company additional publicity.
Blake Griffin’s WinView Commercials
Those familiar with the deal say Blake Griffin is getting equity in WinView Games, along with direct compensation. The original ad campaign is going to star Blake Griffin in a 3-episode web series.
In the series, Blake Griffin will go to work in an office setting. He’ll use the WinView Games app to predict what his cubicle mates will do next in the office setting.
NBA and MGM Resorts
Previously, the National Basketball Association (NBA) itself and the Philadelphia 76ers signed deals with sports betting operators, but Griffin’s deal is the first time a player has signed such a deal. The NBA and WNBA signed a data sharing deal with MGM Resorts in August.
When he and MGM Resorts CEO Jim Murren held a joint press conference to announce the deal, Adam Silver said, “As the landscape for sports betting in the US Continues to evolve at a rapid pace, MGM Resorts is a proven gaming leader for us to work with on this groundbreaking partnership.”
Sixers and Caesars Entertainment
Earlier this week, the Philadelphia 76ers signed a partnership deal with Caesars Entertainment, which is quickly becoming a go-to sportsbook operator when it comes to sports franchises. Caesars also recently signed partnership deals with the Baltimore Ravens, as well as the Las Vegas Stadium (eventual home of the Raiders).
The Sixers deal includes a signage inside Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center. Visitors to the arena will be able to win prizes and trips to Caesars Entertainment resorts in Las Vegas and beyond. Caesars has 3 casino resorts in Atlantic City, along with a property across the US-Canada border only 7 miles from Detroit (in Ontario).
New Jersey Devils’ Prudential Center
Sixers owner Joshua Harris, who also is majority owner of the New Jersey Devils, included the Devils’ arena in the 76ers-Caesars deal. In the Devils’ Prudential Center, Caesars will place a 5,000 square foot lounge called the Caesars Club. The Caesars Club will
The New Jersey Devils have embraced sports betting like no other major American pro sports franchise yet. The Devils have a similar deal with William Hill US. The William Hill Sports Lounge is sportsbook-themed enclave inside the Prudential Center. The sports lounge is going to have a full bar, LCD television sets around the perimeter, and a kiosk area to place mobile bets.