by Ryan Nix
Even though Southland Casino will end greyhound racing in 2022, Southland’s visitors will still be able to participate in sports betting. In fact, as of yesterday, casino-goers can start making wagers on the NBA, NASCAR, college basketball, professional golfing and even this Sunday’s Super Bowl.
The West Memphis casino partnered with International Game Technology PLC. (IGT) to provide kiosks and betting equipment for Southland. “IGT is a serious sports betting technology provider with a proven commitment to customer success, excellent global reputation, and a reliable, omni-channel sports betting solution for the U.S. market,” says Brian Hansberry, president of the gaming division of Delaware North, Southland’s parent company. “We believe the IGT PlaySports solution will help us establish Delaware North as a preferred sports betting provider in West Virginia and Arkansas while enabling us to further reward our Lucky North Club members.”
Southland is Arkansas’ third casino to receive approval from the Arkansas Racing Commission for sports betting, according to Scott Hardin, an official from Arkansas’ Department of Finance and Administration. They follow the Oaklawn Racing Casino in Hot Springs and the Saracen Casino Annex in Pine Bluff, both of which have offered sports betting for a few months. Incidentally, Saracen uses the same IGT PlaySports technology as Southland.
Gamblers can wager on athletics in multiple areas on Southland’s campus. The newly-renamed Sportsbook Bar & Grill houses three retail betting windows and five self-service kiosks, and the second floor mezzanine has an additional three betting windows and four kiosks. Their sports betting soft-opening presages their large-scale expansion, with a new casino complex and 20-story hotel planned.