So that it may offer NBA bets, Chicago-based Rush Street Interactive (RSI) has switched its sports betting license from the Golden Nugget owned by Tilman Fertitta to Monmouth Park.

According to B2B publisher EGR

NBA wagers cannot be taken by sportsbooks which operate on the Golden Nugget license due to state regulations banning anyone possessing a major interest in a specific sport from taking bets on the particular sport. 

In September last year, Fertitta (pictured) reached an agreement to purchase the Houston Rockets from then-owner Leslie Alexander for $2.2 billion.

Timing is everything:

The 61-year-old American billionaire businessman’s ownership of the Houston Rockets makes the license switch by Rush Street for its PlaySugarHouse sportsbook to Monmouth Park prior to the start of the 2018-19 NBA season, which kicked off on Tuesday night,  a necessary one.

Upwards of 15 percent of Nevada‘s sports betting handle in 2017 was reportedly attributed to the NBA.

EGR reports that a source with knowledge of the situation said, “It’s a huge disadvantage not to have NBA.”

According to the news agency, both Golden Nugget and Rush Street Interactive declined to comment.

Hoping for caveat:

Earlier this year, the Golden Nugget said that it “hopes to persuade lawmakers over time that the total NBA ban is unnecessary and should be limited simply to the Houston Rockets team owned by Mr. Fertitta.”

The above caveat is currently enjoyed by Golden Nugget sportsbooks in Nevada, and according to EGR, the operator is attempting to negotiate similar rules in The Garden State in time for the start of the 2019-20 NBA season.

The Golden Nugget license will reportedly continue to be used by the PlaySugarHouse online casino.

Online sports betting:

Monmouth Park Racetrack’s sports wagering app is available on online on mobile devices and offers the full menu of sports wagers available at the Monmouth Park Sports Book by William Hill and allows customers to deposit or withdraw from their accounts at the Sports Book. launched online sports betting integrated with its online casino in August, marking its entrance into New Jersey’s growing sports betting market.

The SugarHouse Online Sportsbook & Casino was the first online sports betting associated with the license of the Atlantic City Golden Nugget casino, which has an online affiliation with SugarHouse casino in Philly.