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Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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Casino City’s Friday Five: Acquisitions and sports betting edition

6 Aug 2021

By Dan Ippolito
North Carolina is moving in the right direction for a new sports betting bill. Before we dive into the details, we also have a few other topics to cover this week. Penn National Gaming announced it will be acquiring Canadian company, Score Media and Gaming. In addition, we have a race to the finish at BitStarz, the WSOP Online series coming to an end and more questions about whether or not Las Vegas casinos facing another shutdown.

Let’s begin with 40 levels of play at BitStarz:

5. Arabian Nights Level Up Adventure at BitStarz
Players can take on 40 levels and get their hands on a €50,000 individual prize pool. There’s a €10,000 cash prize waiting for the first player that reaches Level 40.

The adventure is already underway beginning on 2 August and will continue until 10 September.

All it takes to get in on the action is a valid BitStarz account. If you already have one, you’ll be automatically registered, so you won’t have to do anything.

4. Sindelar wins WSOP Online NL Hold’em Grand Finale
On Sunday night, the 2021 World Series of Poker Online $500 NLH Grand Finale, the last event of the summer series, attracted 1,355 players who rebought 669 times.

With over 2,000 entries and $1 million guaranteed, it was Dan "Feeltheflow" Sindelar coming out on top to win a $159,100 and his first career gold bracelet.

Prior to the win, Sindelar had 117 WSOP-related cashes totaling $1,802,580 and came close to winning a bracelet just a few weeks ago when he finished runner-up in the $500 No-Limit Hold'em Turbo Deepstack for $51,527.

However, his best WSOP cash is $1,235,862 for placing seventh in the 2014 WSOP Main Event. It was a successful series for Sindelar as he cashed in eight events, for a total of $221,081 in winnings to go along with his first WSOP gold bracelet.

3. This Week in Gambling: Could Las Vegas casinos close again?
Last week saw the return of Las Vegas casino restrictions where employees had to wear masks indoors. This week's gambling news finds Nevada following the CDC recommendations, meaning tourists at Vegas casinos must also wear masks. Will social distancing and capacity restrictions follow? And could a Las Vegas closure actually happen again?

Nevada Governor Sisolak signed an Emergency Directive, which rolls things back to May, and makes face masks mandatory for all individuals (whether employee or tourist) to wear face masks starting. This directive comes in the midst of the latest wave of infections from the new Delta variant of the coronavirus. Nearly 1,000 people in Nevada have recently tested positive for COVID-19, which is the highest daily total since late January.

Although Las Vegas face masks have returned, there has not yet been any comment on social distancing or casino capacity restrictions.

2. North Carolina sports betting
On Wednesday, the bill to license sports betting in North Carolina passed the Senate committee.

Republican Senator Jim Perry put the bill forward that would allow the state’s lottery commission to issue between 10 and 12 licenses to operators.

This bill would also call for operators to have sportsbooks inside or near sports arenas. Sports wagering would be offered for college and professional sports with some amateur sports available, as well.

1. Penn National Gaming to acquire Score Media and Gaming
Yesterday, Penn National Gaming announced that it will acquire theScore, a Canadian digital media and sports betting and technology company, for approximately $2 billion in cash and stock.

The transaction has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is currently expected to close in the first quarter of 2022.

Jay Snowden, President and Chief Executive Officer of Penn National, commented, “We are thrilled to be acquiring theScore, which is the number one sports app in Canada and the third most popular sports app in all of North America. theScore’s unique media platform and modern, state-of-the art technology is a powerful complement to the reach of Barstool Sports and its popular personalities and content.”

John Levy, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of theScore, commented, “This deal brings together two companies that share a vision for how media and gaming intersect, and we could not be more excited to join the Penn National family. I’m proud of theScore team and all of our accomplishments, and believe the time is right to take the next step and align with a company in Penn National with the resources and scale to accelerate our business. We are excited to join forces with Penn to form the most powerful media and gaming company in North America.
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