Staples Center President Lee Zeidman told TheStadiumBusiness.com that the Los Angeles building is considering “betting windows” after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal ban on sports gambling last month.
In a 6-3 ruling in May, the Supreme Court overturned a 1992 federal law that prohibited the legalization of sports betting across the United States. The ruling cleared the way for individual states to regulate sports betting and the Staples Center in California appears to be considering taking advantage of the recent ruling.
“There is still a lot of legislation that needs to take place on a state-by-state basis – California being one of them – and I believe the various leagues are going to weigh in, as well as the teams and the owners of the venues,” Zeidman told TheStadiumBusiness.com after he recieved the Outstanding Achievement Award at TheStadiumBusiness Awards at Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester, England.
Zeidman believes legalized sports betting will become a new revenue stream for different people thanks to the Supreme Court ruling that puts the right to prohibit or allow gambling in the hands of each state unless Congress chooses to regulate it.
In regards to state-sanctioned gambling, the Staples Center President added “There are a lot of unanswered questions right now, but it’s very exciting what’s taking place. We’ll just see how it all unfolds.”
Opened in 1999, Zeidman explained that Staples Center is due for a revamp and that they have begun talks with three architectural firms that could help rethink venue offerings.
“Is there an opportunity for us to have a betting window or series of betting windows? Of course there is,” Zeidman said. “We are going to be 20 years old next year, so we’re in the process of looking at reinventing Staples Center. We’re talking about what we’re going to do in the next two to four years and the new concepts we’re going to bring.”
In the coming years, Zeidman explained that Staples Center will look to reinvent some of its premium spaces, reassess some offers for its season ticketholders, and figure out how to appeal even more to millennials and younger generations. The improvements will be in addition to the $4-$6 million Staples Center already spends on annual upgrades.
“Our philosophy is that you don’t spend $450 million on building an arena and then don’t refresh it and put in new technology,” Zeidman said. “We’re not just refreshing it for the people who work there or the four million people who visit every year, but we’re doing it for the teams as well.”
“There are a lot of venues in Southern California that we compete with so we feel that we need to constantly update our venue to stay at the forefront,” Zeidman added.