Current Breakdown of Sportsbooks Operating in Arizona
Arizona sports betting — both in-person and online — is now legal in Arizona, with the law allowing for 20 mobile sportsbook licenses – 10 to Native American tribes and 10 to professional sports teams/venues. There is, however, already a push to expand the Native American licenses to 22, which would be one for each of the state’s tribes.
As is the case with the other states that have legalized sports betting, the minimum age to place sports bets in Arizona is 21. And while the options for sports and bets are plentiful, there is absolutely no legal betting on high school sports. You can, however, bet on college sports, including on local college teams playing in Arizona. But, like a few other states, there are no college proposition bets on individual performances.
You must be in the state of Arizona to place bets with Arizona-based sportsbooks. So if you find yourself at the Four Corners Monument in the Navajo Nation, you can use Arizona online sportsbooks if you are in the Arizona corner. If you are in the Colorado corner, use Colorado-based sportsbooks. And if you are in the Utah corner, move back to the Arizona corner. There is no legal sports betting in Utah. Betting apps in Arizona make your life a little bit easier, as they will let you know–by way of geolocation–whether or not you are able to participate in Arizona sports betting.
Each sports betting license costs the operator a $100,000 application fee, a $750,000 initial license fee, and an annual $150,000 renewal fee. Employees of sports betting operators must pay a $250 license fee that renews annually for $150.
In its first month of taking legal bets in late 2021, Arizona sports betting raked in $291 million, the most of any state in the country in its first month. The tax revenue raised by the state will provide funding for K-12 education, fund wildlife and habitat conservation, metal health and substance abuse treatment centers, and provide native tribes with funding for education, health care, housing, and clean water.
Arizona Pro Sports Betting Partnerships
Because Arizona began the legalization a few years after several other states, an attitude adjustment across professional sports had already taken place when sports betting went live. Instead of distancing themselves from sports betting, professional leagues and teams embraced sports betting and signed partnerships with major online sports betting brands.
The NBA has been quick to join forces with sports betting brands, and even before Arizona had completed its legalization effort, the Suns had already signed a partnership with FanDuel. That deal includes a large retail sportsbook at the Phoenix Suns current venue at the Footprint Center. It is one of the most popular partnerships in the entire state and will most likely be one of the most lucrative across the country.
The Cardinals were a little slower than the Suns, partly because the NFL has been slower to embrace legal Arizona sports betting. But in August of 2021, before that season kicked off, the Cardinals and BetMGM announced their sports betting partnership, which includes building a large retail sportsbook near the Cardinals’ stadium in Glendale.
The Diamondbacks entered into a 10-year partnership with the sports betting experts at Caesars. You can bet with Caesars online in Arizona, or you can visit their new state-of-the-art facility located at Chase Field in downtown Phoenix. That sportsbook will be open 365 days a year, not just when baseball is being played.
The Waste Management Open (also known as the Phoenix Open) is known for its large and raucous crowds, and the amount of beer consumed when the PGA Tour makes its annual visit to Scottsdale. Now it will also feature a massive DraftKings sportsbook on-site and a full complement of DraftKings online sports betting throughout the state. This will also include daily fantasy sports, which is also falls under the umbrella of legal Arizona sports betting.
Phoenix International Raceway
NASCAR visits the Phoenix area twice a year, including the Championship race at season’s end. With NASCAR being an official sports betting partner with Barstool Sportsbook, not surprisingly, they are building a retail sportsbook at Phoenix International Raceway. Barstool also operates online in Arizona through the Raceway’s sports betting license.
In a first for a WNBA team, the Mercury have signed a partnership agreement with Bally Bet. The $66 million exclusive rights deal for Bally is the largest team sponsorship agreement in the history of women’s sports. This is a massive step for progression of the women’s game going forward into the future.
Available Sports for Wagering in Arizona
Obviously, all sports leagues and teams that have signed on with a sports betting operator are available within the realm of Arizona sports betting. Fortunately, the sports betting landscape in the nation’s 48th state is much larger than those aforementioned major professional sports.
In Arizona, you can place wagers on these sports and more:
- Football – NFL, CFL, College
- Basketball – NBA, WNBA, European/International Basketball, Men’s and Women’s College
- Baseball – MLB, International, College
- Hockey – NHL, World, European
- Auto Racing – NASCAR, Formula 1
- Golf – PGA Tour, International
- Soccer – MLS, European and Asian Leagues
- Rugby League
- Rugby Union
- Ski Jumping
- Speed Skating
- Water Polo
Types of Sports Bets in Arizona
Suppose you’ve placed bets at a retail sportsbook in Las Vegas or an online sportsbook operating somewhere else. In that case, the types of bets you’re used to seeing are exactly the types of bets that are legal and available in Arizona. The wheel is good, works, and there is no reason to reinvent the wheel. Just give the sports betting public what they’ve already shown that they want.
As far as Arizona sports betting is concerned, you can place the following types of bets:
- Point Spread
- Totals Betting (Over/Under)
One of the newest additions to the sports betting wheel is live betting, also called in-play betting. These are bets on games and events that are already in progress, and they feature changing point spreads and odds as the game unfolds.
Live betting is a relatively new way to bet on sports, but it has become the predominant means of sports betting, and most Arizona sportsbooks do now offer live betting. Often there will be live streaming options to help enhance your live betting experience.
Online Sportsbooks Operating in Arizona
Of the 10 available sports team/venue licenses, eight have been awarded, and seven have a sports betting operator partner:
- Arizona Cardinals – BetMGM
- Phoenix Suns – FanDuel
- Arizona Diamondbacks – Caesars
- Phoenix Mercury – Bally’s
- Arizona Rattlers – BetRivers
- TPC Scottsdale – DraftKings
- Phoenix International Raceway – Barstool
- Arizona Coyotes – The NHL team in Arizona does own a sports betting license but has yet to partner with a sports betting operator.
Of the 10 available tribal licenses, all 10 have been awarded, and all 10 have partner sportsbook operators.
- Ak-Chin Indian Community – Fubo Gaming
- Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation – Betfred
- Fort Mojave Indian Tribe – SuperBook
- San Carlos Apache Tribe – WynnBet
- Quechan Tribe – Unibet
- Tonto Apache Tribe – TwinSpires
- Hualapai Tribe – Golden Nugget
- San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe – Betway
- Tohono O’odham Nation – Desert Diamond
- Navajo Nation – Hard Rock Sportsbook
As mentioned earlier, there may be an expansion of the tribal sports betting licenses beyond the original 10 awarded. There were 16 total applicants initially, leaving three of the biggest tribes, who already had partner operators, out. They were Yavapai-Apache Nation – PointsBet, Colorado River Indian Tribes – BlueBet, and White Mountain Apache Tribe – MaximBet.
A lawsuit filed by the tribes that were denied a license has prompted the push to add more. In all likelihood, the Arizona sports betting industry is only going to grow larger, especially as the competition heats up.
Sportsbook Bonus Offers in Arizona
Bonus offers will vary from sportsbook to sportsbook, season to season. Consiappsdering the connection many sports betting operators have to professional leagues and teams in Arizona, the offers may be team specific for a particular book.
But generally speaking, these are the bonus offers available at Arizona-based sportsbooks.
Most sportsbooks award some kind of bonus for becoming a new customer, with these usually coming in the form of a free bet or match to a customer’s initial deposit. For example, if a sportsbook matches your deposit 50%, up to $500, you would qualify for the full $500 bonus if you deposit $1,000.
In order to turn that matching bonus into cash, you’ll need to bet the amount a set number of times, and usually within a time period of 30 to 90 days.
Free Bets/Risk-Free Bets
The welcome bonus often comes in the form of a free bet, which simply means that you are given, let’s say, $50 to make a bet. If you win the bet, the profit is yours to keep. If you lose the bet, no worries. You didn’t pay for it.
Free bets are also awarded over the course of the year in several different promotions that might be tied to parlays, total bets in a week, bets on a sport, or some other means of incentivizing your wagering.
Often included with parlay betting, an odds booster is a way for the sportsbook to take a bet you’ve made and make it more valuable. Adding 10% or more to a parlay can suddenly take it from a questionable bet to one that becomes a no-brainer.
Odds boosters are also often attached to sport-specific wagers and wagers on large events, like major golf tournaments, the NCAA Tournament, and the World Series.
Player Loyalty Programs
Not all sportsbooks will offer them, but some of the larger sportsbooks will provide you with membership into a rewards program. Enrollment is generally free and usually automatic, and it will award you points for each real money wager that you make. Then those points can be used for free bets, other VIP perks, and if the sportsbook is affiliated with a brick-and-mortar casino and resort, often you can get discounted stays.
Banking Options for Sports Betting in Arizona
Banking with online sportsbooks has become fairly standard across the country, and what you see offered by betting apps in Arizona is what most of the other states also offer. That makes it simple for the sportsbooks, simple for the financial institutions, and simple for you.
ACH transfers and online bill pay through an existing bank account is the fastest and most secure way to fund your sports betting account. All of the money is moved electronically, and usually, there is no need for you to give anyone else your bank account information, limiting the risk of fraud.
You can also use e-wallets, like PayPal. There may be a slightly longer processing time attached, depending on how you fund your PayPal account. But like with online bill pay, the security of using this method is first-rate.
Many sportsbooks, and especially those affiliated with operating casinos, like Caesars and BetMGM, have prepaid cards that you can use. You can also use a credit card to fund your account, but be warned, some credit card issuers treat payments to gambling operators like a cash advance, so the charged interest rates are often higher.
Finally, there is good old cash as the final option. You can use a PayNearMe terminal to fund with cash, or if you’re at a casino cage of an affiliated sportsbook, they will take your cash and add it to your account.
There are fewer options to withdraw your money because the sportsbooks will not send you cash. You can, however, get a check sent in the mail, if that’s what you prefer.
The more common ways to go, and much faster, are to be paid by echeck through your bank account, have the funds returned to you via PayPal, or have the money returned to your prepaid card. Most electronic withdrawal options are only available if it’s also how you made your deposit.
History of Gaming in Arizona
Even as one of the more conservative states in the latter half of the 20th century, Arizona has always valued gaming. Some of that is because of its long-time status as a frontier state – saloons and other gambling halls are as much a part of its history as Tombstone and the OK Corral.
Another large part of Arizona’s embracement of legal gaming is the native population in the state. Fully one out of every 10 tribal people who live in the United States calls Arizona home. Thanks to the Indian Regulatory Gaming Act of 1988, which allowed Native American tribes to open and operate casinos on reservation land, more than two dozen casinos operate in Arizona.
Thirty years after that seminal act, in 2018, the United States Supreme Court struck down a 1992 federal law that banned commercial sports betting, leaving it up to each state to create its own sports betting laws. New Jersey and Pennsylvania were the first to make sports betting legal, followed closely by West Virginia. And as the legalization wave has swept west, Arizona got on board in 2021.
Legislation was started in 2017 in anticipation of the SCOTUS ruling, but it took an additional four years to get it passed and signed by Governor Doug Ducey. Then after the regulatory bodies made their adjustments to the rules and began giving out sports betting licenses, the first wagers in the state were taken on September 9, 2021, at Chase Field in downtown Phoenix, the home of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
That day the Diamondbacks became the first MLB team to open its own sportsbook. A sportsbook also opened at the Footprint Center, the home of the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury. And the Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale opened a Barstool Sportsbook that September afternoon, even though NASCAR didn’t make it to Phoenix until November.
Arizona Sports Betting FAQ
What are the legal requirements for Arizona Sports betting?
You must be at least 21 years old to place bets at Arizona’s retail or online sportsbook. If you are placing bets with an online sportsbook located in Arizona, then you must also be physically present in the state. You do not need to be a resident of Arizona, but you must be inside Arizona state lines.
Is it legal to wager on college sports in Arizona?
Yes, you can wager on college sports in Arizona and on Arizona teams and events taking place within the state. The only restriction on betting on college sports in Arizona is that it is illegal to place proposition bets on individual performances. You can place wagers on how many touchdowns the Sun Devils score, but you can’t place wagers on how many touchdowns their quarterback will score.
Is it legal to bet on horse races in Arizona?
Horse racing has been operating legally in Arizona since 1935, and there are five different venues in the state that offer pari-mutuel wagering. There is also online horse race betting in Arizona, but most online and mobile sportsbooks do not offer it.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports legal in Arizona?
As part of the same legislation that legalized sports betting in Arizona, daily fantasy sports were also legalized. Prior to the legislation in 2021, Arizona was one of just seven states without daily fantasy sports. Now, betting apps in Arizona regularly offer DFS competitions.
Does Arizona support responsible gaming?
Yes. Every sportsbook operating in Arizona is required to provide links to problem gaming resources, like Gamblers Anonymous and the National Council on Problem Gambling. Arizona also supports self-exclusion lists, which allow players to ban themselves from retail gambling establishments and more than 1,000 ATMs in gaming locations.