The ticket box office at Capital One Arena has been transformed into a sportsbook, complete with betting windows and self-serve kiosks, and begin taking bets Today, a first for an American sports venue.
According to ESPN, beginning at 4 p.m., Friday, bookmaker William Hill U.S. will operate seven betting windows and nine kiosks at the arena’s box office, taking wagers on professional and collegiate sports.
The box office will serve as a temporary space, while construction on a permanent sportsbook inside the arena continues (Former Green Turtle location). In the meantime, the sportsbook will be open seven days a week with normal operating hours of 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. The sportsbook entrance is located at 601 F Street NW, between 6th and 7th Street.
“Bringing fresh and innovative experiences to fans is core to our mission at Monumental Sports & Entertainment, and we are so proud to partner with William Hill to bring this new dimension to the Washington Metropolitan region,” Jim Van Stone, president of business operations and chief commercial officer for Monumental Sports, said in a release announcing the opening of the temporary sportsbook.
Monumental Sports, which owns the Washington Capitals, Wizards and Mystics and the Capital One Arena, has said it hopes to open a sports betting operation in the sports venue where The Greene Turtle used to sit. Construction on the new venue was well underway when sports was suspended in early March.
Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis has always been a strong proponent of sports betting, as he detailed in this Washington Post video from October of 2018:
Timeline To A Wager
On May 14, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to nullify the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, the federal law that prohibited sports gambling in all but a handful of areas.
The possibility of legal DC sports betting first appeared in September 2018. That’s when DC Councilmember Jack Evans introduced the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2018.
The bill received a hearing in October and then underwent a major change before coming before the council for approval in late November. Evans amended the bill to include an integrity fee of 0.25 percent of revenue.
The next battle came a week later. Evans pushed for a single-operator model run by the lottery, while DraftKings, FanDuel, and others pushed for at least five licenses to be available. An amendment proposed to include multiple operators failed and the lottery retained the primary rights to operate DC sports betting.
On October 29th, 2018, the NHL named MGM Resorts the first official sports betting partner of the League.
In early November, 2018, the league entered into a partnership with FanDuel. The multi-year deal made FanDuel the official daily fantasy sports partner and an official sports betting partner for the professional hockey league via its FanDuel Sportsbook.
On December 18, 2018, the D.C. Council passed the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2018, which Mayor Muriel Bowser signed in January. The next month, the D.C. Council gave final approval to the bill fast-tracking sports betting.
Act 22-594, the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2018, as amended by Act 23-2, was signed into law on January 23, 2019, and transmitted to the U.S. Congress for review on February 7, 2019. This legislation cleared congressional review and became law on May 3, 2019. The law legalized sports wagering in the District of Columbia.
In March of 2019, the NHL announced that they had brought sports book operator William Hill on board as an official sports betting partner of the NHL.
On March 27th, 2019, Monumental Sports and Entertainment CEO Ted Leonsis confirmed that the Greene Turtle restaurant at Capital One Arena will become a sportsbook. Leonsis made the comments during the American Gaming Association’s Sports Betting Executive Summit at MGM National Harbor.
In July of 2019, Former American Gaming Association (AGA) executive Sara Slane announced that she will work as a consultant for the National Hockey League (NHL), advising its teams on sports betting strategies. Slane’s consulting company, Slane Advisory, is based in Washington, D.C.
On October 3, 2019, betting firm William Hill WMH PLC and the owner of Washington’s basketball and hockey teams announced a partnership to open a sports-betting venue inside the district’s Capital One Arena, in what would be the first wagering establishment inside a major-league sports venue in the U.S. The sportsbook is expected to open as soon as 2020, depending on regulatory approval. Financial terms weren’t disclosed for the deal between the American subsidiary of U.K.-based William Hill and Monumental Sports & Entertainment, owner of the NBA’s Wizards, WNBA’s Mystics and NHL’s Capitals.
“I try to look at the global business environment and right now the sports gaming industry on a global basis is growing and very healthy,” says Billionaire @TedLeonsis
Monumental is partnering with William Hill for the first sports book in a professional sports arena pic.twitter.com/iR5jPScOw8
— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) October 3, 2019
On May 28, 2020, The DC Lottery announced the launch of its online sports wagering platform in Washington D.C., though the roll out of a supporting mobile app has again been delayed until June. Developed in partnership with Intralot, the Gambet DC platformhad been due to go live in March, but the launch was pushed back due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Players in the state can now register for an account via the Gambet website and place sports wagers, though options are currently limited due to the ongoing suspension of many major sports events as a result of the outbreak. Per sports wagering laws in Washington D.C., betting will be permitted on all major sports events and collegiate sports, though players will not be able to bet on events featuring college teams located in the state.
On June 4, 2020, The DC Lottery announced the launch of its online sports wagering platform in Washington D.C., though the roll out of a supporting mobile app has again been delayed until June. Developed in partnership with Intralot, the Gambet DC platformhad been due to go live in March, but the launch was pushed back due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Current application status.
On June 8, 2020 The DC Lottery announced yet another delay in opening retail sports betting in the District. The D.C. Office of Lottery and Gaming doesn’t expect to launch retail sports betting until the summer of 2021 — more than six months after its most recent estimate — citing delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
On July 31, 2020, Capital One Arena became the first American sports venue to open a sportsbook within the facility. The Sportsbook was temporarily placed in place of the ticket box office until the permanent location, the former Green Turtle, completes construction.
By Jon Sorensen