Broadcasters and legal sportsbooks want to convert sports fans into bettors and bettors into sports fans. Whether you’re a Chicago Bulls bettor or a Bulls fan, it won’t matter tonight.
PointsBet Sportsbook and NBC Sports Chicago are behind the first-ever BetCast experience, coinciding with the Charlotte Hornets at Chicago Bulls game on Thursday, April 22.
It will be the first for NBCSCH+ viewers and Bulls-watchers, and a foreshadowing of the greater use of BetCast.
Details on the first BetCast Bulls game
According to the PointsBet press release, at 8 tonight, viewers who get NBC Sports Chicago Plus will experience a new game presentation with a live on-screen odds ticker and more.
NBC Sports Chicago will carry the traditional format; however, on the Plus channel, it will be all about betting on the Bulls.
BetCast is a collaboration between NBC and PointsBet, initially designed for NBC’s golf coverage as a second-screen experience. It provides analysis, commentary and info about betting markets.
NBC Sports Chicago’s Kendall Gill and David Kaplan will be a part of the BetCast coverage, along with Teddy Greenstein, a PointsBet senior editor. The trio will discuss odds movement, futures bets and the action on other games.
There are several reasons why this presentation could be the wave of the future for all Chicago sports. The further expansion of gambling-centric content seems like it could be visible later this summer for Illinois sports bettors.
Could more BetCast be on the way for Chicago fans?
NBC Sports Chicago has the local broadcast rights for another premier sports product in the market, Chicago’s NHL team. If the BetCast broadcast goes off without a hitch today, it could be tried there, too.
Within the confines of events that the network has committed to on the Plus channel, BetCast broadcasts might become a regular thing. Because NBC has heavily invested in PointsBet and PointsBet in the Chicago market, it makes sense for both parties.
PointsBet gets more exposure while NBC gets more value out of its investment. Although the parties have yet to use BetCast for ice hockey, there’s an incentive to work out any kinks.
NBC has the broadcast rights to the NHL postseason. BetCast could have even more value when NBC Sports Network could carry an alternate presentation for games that regular NBC is carrying.
Alternatively, BetCast could be available via a companion, second-screen experience like it was for the PGA’s Waste Management Phoenix Open earlier this year. Users accessed the coverage using Peacock Premium accounts during that event.
With the coming shutdown of NBC Sports Network to drive content to Peacock, the timing works. Thursday’s BetCast Bulls game might give Chicagoans a sampling of what could eventually be on the menu regularly. If that happens, the appropriate answer to the question of whether someone is a Bulls bettor or fan could be yes.