Five Questions: PGA Tour To Integrate Golf Betting Odds Into Broadcasts

Posted on October 14, 2020

The PGA Tour continues its two-week stop in Las Vegas this weekend and fittingly, the CJ Cup at Shadow Creek will be the first tournament to feature live betting odds in the TV telecast.

Golf presents one of the more intriguing live in-play betting opportunities among major sports in the US. The pacing of events and opportunities for diverse betting markets could attract bettors less interested in evaluating an entire field for a pre-tournament wager.

Here’s everything we know about the golf betting odds deal:

How will it work?

Odds from BetMGM will pop up twice an hour on the broadcast. They will cover everything from:

  • Odds to win the event
  • Head-to-head matchups
  • Make/miss the cut specials
  • Hole-in-ones
  • Playoffs

Is this a big step for the PGA Tour?

The Tour has been one of the most aggressive pro sports organizations in using gambling as a way to attract and engage fans. It launched GolfBet.com earlier this year as a gambling content site in partnership with The Action Network.  It also added gambling content to its official PGATour.com site. 

Here’s Norb Gambuzza, PGA Tour’s SVP for media and gaming:

“The focus of our sports betting partnerships is to engage fans in new and creative ways. As an element of that strategy, we began integrating live odds onto Tour digital platforms in August.

“Now we look forward to learning from this first-time test in a live telecast.”

What does BetMGM get out of it?

Apart from the brand exposure to potentially high value customers, the BetMGM app will also roll out real-time PGA Tour video highlights.

It is the first operator to launch this type of sports betting-adjacent content from the Tour.

“We look forward to continuing to move the needle and work closely with the Tour to produce great content,” said Matt Prevost, BetMGM CMO.

Is there a history of success with this type of move?

Betting odds have been integrated into two notable golf events before; The Matches 1 & 2 between Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods.

The most recent matchup featured DraftKings odds, and fans responded by making it DK’s biggest golf event ever, doubling the previous record. Of course, that was during the sports lockdown when fans were starved for content. But regardless, there’s some precedent for success here.

You can be sure other pro leagues and betting operators will be watching closely to see how the integration is handled. Major League Baseball in particular appears greatly interested in in-play markets.

What about the official golf betting data feed?

There was, however, no mention of BetMGM taking up the PGA Tour’s official data feed powered by IMG.

That product debuted with European operator bet365 last week. It includes shot-by-shot tracking and looks like the type of product to drive in-play wagering.

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Brad Allen

Brad has been covering the online gambling industry in Europe and the US for more than four years, most recently as the news editor at EGR Global.

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