In preparation for sports betting, the del Lago Resort & Casino is seeking approval to decrease its slot machine offering. The Finger Lakes property wants to cut its slots by 15% to make room for upcoming sports betting services.
The casino is the third of four in upstate New York to seek a change in the number of slots it provides.
The del Lago opened in February 2017 and cost $400m (€358m) to construct. When opening, the state required the facility to offer a minimum of 1,950 slot machines along with 84 table games. The casino is now requesting that the amount be cut by 15% in order to provide space for sports betting. It has submitted its request for the decrease to the New York Gaming Commission.
The del Lago announced in March that it planned on seeking a reduction after the commission gave its approval to two other venues to do so. The Resorts World Catskills and Tioga Downs could cut their slot game numbers. According to one of the VSO News articles, Resorts World Catskills cut its slots by 550 while Tioga Downs removed only 50 slots.
The two casinos decided to cut back on their slot games in order to focus on other amenities. Both properties have found it difficult to meet projected revenues set for the first year of operations.
The Rivers Casino in Schenectady is now the only casino in the upstate area that has not indicated it will be reducing its slot game numbers.
Preparing for Sports Betting
The four casinos in upstate New York as well as Native American casinos in the state will soon be able to offer sports betting. The Commission is currently working on regulations and should give the go-ahead for the venues to begin offering services soon.
The del Lago Resort & Casino announced a partnership with DraftKings last summer, with the two set to work together on sports betting services. DraftKings will be providing a physical sportsbook inside the casino. The two are in agreement to work on a mobile and online option if the state authorizes online gaming.
Del Lago’s spokesperson Steven Greenberg said: “Del Lago Resort & Casino looks forward to working with our DraftKings partner to offer sports gaming for our customers. In order to accomplish that, we are seeking to reduce to 1,650 slots and 66 table games. Once construction is complete, we will likely increase again.”
The Commission is expected to give the property approval to decrease the number of slots on the gaming floor.