When a new sportsbook debuts in a new market, it is commonplace to bring out celebs to launch the retail sportsbook with the ceremonious first bet.
With no retail sportsbook to open today in Colorado though, BetRivers Sportsbook decided to take the concept online with a popular former Denver Nugget and Colorado native.
Billups puts down the first online bet using BetRivers app
Around 10 a.m. MT on Friday, Billups put down $97.88 at BetRivers on Denver Broncos’ newly drafted wide receiver Jerry Jeudy to win the Offensive Rookie of the Year. The current line on that market is +2,000.
The BetRivers Colorado online betting site launched via a partnership with Tripe Crown Casino’s JP McGill’s.
If Jeudy does earn that award, Billups’ payout will be $2,055.48. That would be $1,957.60 in profit. It’s probably pretty safe to say that Billups will be rooting for Jeudy to rack up the stats this fall.
“This is huge for the state of Colorado, both the economy and for avid sports fans in the state,” said Billups. “Betting has become such a big part of the daily sports conversation and this move is a huge step in the right direction for the industry and the sports world.”
BetRivers pushing esports in Colorado
According to a news release, the sportsbook may have kicked things off with a football bet, but BetRivers will tout its esports markets from the get-go. Those will include CS:GO, eNASCAR, and League of Legends.
In the absence of major North American traditional sports, these have become more popular betting fodder in other jurisdictions. Rush Street Interactive, the sports betting operator behind BetRivers, operates online sportsbooks in Indiana, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania as well.
BetRivers plans to stream live events to CO bettors as well. Coloradans who use the sportsbook app can check that app daily to see what events they can view.
Esports aren’t the only options available for BetRivers customers on Friday, however. The sportsbook plans to also offer markets for an array of traditional sporting events from around the world.
That includes Russian ice hockey, Korean baseball, and Ukrainian table tennis. BetRivers will also come to the table with futures bets on college football and the NFL.
BetRivers will operate JP McGill’s Cripple Creek sportsbook
Triple Crown also operates the Brass Ass and Midnight Rose casinos in Cripple Creek. Only JP McGill’s will actually house a retail sportsbook between the three of them, however.
That might change in the future. The market access deal with Rush Street isn’t exclusive. However, the three interconnected properties share other amenities like hotels and the Midnight Rose poker room.
Of course, retail operations at JP McGill’s can’t start until the casino reopens. CO Gov. Jared Polis wants his state to be among the first to reopen casinos but has yet to commit to any specific time frame for that.
In the meantime, BetRivers will try to gain a significant share of the online market with its current menu like esports betting markets. If that ends up being a strategy to success, expect BetRivers to be a leader in the state for a long time.