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The D Las Vegas banking on new sportsbook instead of stage shows

Posted: 12:06 AM, Nov 12, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-12 10:40:10-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A news sportsbook is coming to downtown next year at The D Las Vegas, which means it's closing the curtains on its stage show to make way for the new venue.

The new sportsbook is set to open up just in time cater to March Madness and the thousands of sports bettors who will be in Las Vegas to bet on the NCAA basketball tournament.

It's an area of gaming that continues to attract visitors as casinos try to come up ways to lure more people inside.

"A lot of people are profiting on that out here,” said Las Vegas local Daeshawn King. “There's a lot of sportsbooks and a lot of sports bars. I used to work at a sports bar so that's where I first started betting."

Developer Derek Stevens and his brother Greg are just a couple of guys among many who see the long-term profitability of sports betting.

Along with the new sportsbook at The D, their new casino Circa, which is slated for opening in 2020, will include a massive sportsbook -- and for good reason. A recent Deloitt Global survey of millennial men who watch sports found that 43% of them bet on a game weekly.

And according to Forbes, a Bleacher Report study found that millennials are twice as likely to bet on sports as people older than 35. This, despite increasing concerns that younger people aren’t interested in gambling at casinos.

Visitor Kevin Boulware said a lot of his friends have no interest in going to casinos.

"It kind of seems like it’s my parents’ generation that likes to do that,” Boulware said. “That is something I've noticed that not a lot of people my age like to go do this."

The Las Vegas entertainment scene appears to be in flux, with monster club KAOS closing its doors less than a year after its opening in April. And the new D sportsbook will go on the second floor displacing several shows, including "Marriage Can Be Murder" and "FRIENDS! The Musical Parody."

Stevens sent 13 Action News this statement:

The D Las Vegas is looking forward to elevating our exceptional hospitality and gaming experiences with the expansion of its second level sportsbook. We are grateful to Ivory Star for a wonderful partnership over the years and will continue to support the shows as they find a new home.

Despite this move, a recent Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority study shows 58% of visitors come for shows.

“I think shows and clubs,” King said. “We got a lot of shows that you don't really get to see anywhere else from smaller towns and other countries.”

He's partly right, but that same study indicates in 2018 visitors were less likely to go to nightclubs, pool parties, or day clubs than in 2016 and 2017.

King says he has his own theory about the rise of the sportsbooks. "Kind of makes me feel like they are trying to appeal to locals more," he said.

Ivory Star Productions says it will work tirelessly to continue their legacies.

“Ending a long-standing relationship is never easy, especially when we are on an upward trajectory, but I am thankful that we have had a space to create and experiment,” Bentham says. “I am proud of the award-winning shows we have but more than that, from our box office team to our casts and crew, I am honored to have worked alongside so many incredible and dedicated individuals that have entrusted me with their livelihoods. I look forward to the next chapter.” -- John and Shannon Bentham