ESPN is seeking deals to license its brand name to sportsbooks for at least $3 billion. It has been in talks with Caesars Entertainment, the casino operator, and DraftKings, the online gambling company, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.
ESPN representatives had no comment to Television News Daily inquiries. A June report in Front Office Sports said ESPN was looking to launch its own branded sportsbooks.
All this followed a number of related moves by ESPN. A year ago, ESPN cut two sports betting content deals with both DraftKings and Caesars.
For those arrangements, ESPN agreed to provide sports content linked to both gambling companies' sports booking operations. Late last year, ESPN launched a studio at Caesars' LINQ Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
TV sports networks have been aggressive in pursuing relationships and/or investments with sports betting concerns in recent years, all stemming from the Supreme Court 2018 decision effectively legalizing sports and letting states decide whether to approve sports betting operations.
In November 2020, in a kind of a reverse move between a gambling company and a TV network group, Sinclair Broadcast Group. sold the branding name rights to 21 of its regional sports networks to Bally’s Corp. -- an umbrella RSN group now known as the Bally Sports Regional Networks.