Major League Fishing (MLF), the world’s largest tournament fishing organization, and Bally’s Corporation (NYSE: BALY), a leading U.S. omni-channel provider of land-based gaming and interactive entertainment, announced today a groundbreaking deal designating Bally’s as MLF’s exclusive Sports Betting, Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS), and Free-to-Play (F2P) Partner for MLF’s tournament circuits – all firsts for the professional fishing industry. This deal represents Bally’s fifth sports betting agreement with a professional sports league, following previously announced agreements with the National Hockey League, the National Basketball Association, the Women’s National Basketball Association, and Major League Baseball.
The partnership includes Bally’s online sportsbook, Bally Bet, becoming the title sponsor of MLF’s coveted Angler of the Year (AOY) Award for the Bass Pro Tour, the sport’s most visible and competitive tournament circuit. The prize for the 2022 Bally Bet AOY winner will be $100,000. The partnership also includes rights for Bally’s to stream Bass Pro Tour events via its own apps.
“As we ready for the start of our 2022 season, our partnership with Bally’s will offer our loyal fans and anglers another unique avenue to engage with professional fishing and the Bass Pro Tour,” MLF President and Chief Executive Officer Jim Wilburn said. “This partnership marks an important moment for Major League Fishing in the growing U.S. gaming and sports betting sectors. Integrating Bally’s industry-best online sports betting and unique gaming offerings with MLF’s SCORETRACKER LIVE® and fan-friendly platforms position us to drive viewership, participation, and large-scale adoption among sports fans.”
As part of the agreement, Bally’s technology will power two new free-to-play fantasy fishing games for the 2022 season. The MLF Predictor Game, an engaging game that offers fans the chance to make predictions at Bass Pro Tour events for prizes, will be rolled out for a full season. MLF Fantasy Fishing will also debut in 2022 for both the MLF Bass Pro Tour and the MLF Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit. The free-to-play game will allow fans to select their team of anglers for each tournament, create private leagues with their family and friends, and win tens of thousands of dollars in cash and prizes. Additional details on the MLF Predictor and Fantasy Fishing games will be announced soon.
“We know how passionate the millions of recreational anglers are about the professional ranks of their sport,” said Adi Dhandhania, Chief Operating Officer of North America for Bally Interactive, the company’s digital division. “This integrated partnership is a perfect showcase for Bally’s, allowing us to leverage our sports betting, daily fantasy sports, and free-to-play games to enhance the fishing fan experience across MLF media and live events.”
The 2022 professional bass fishing seasons will launch early next year, with the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Stop 1 at Sam Rayburn Reservoir, Jan. 27-30, and the Bass Pro Tour Stage One in Monroe-West Monroe, Louisiana, Feb. 5-10.