The line separating sports and sports betting has officially been eliminated. For a while, major sports leagues fought to keep legal sports betting away from their activity, but that fight came to an end in May 2018 with the death of PASPA. Now, all sports leagues, big and small, are more than eager to embrace sports betting. As the new relationship continues to grow, more sports figures are taking a prominent role in sports betting operations. Athletes are more than happy to become the public face of a sportsbook, assuming the price is right, and BetMGM has been actively building out its roster. The latest to join is NFL great Marshawn Lynch.
Marshawn Lynch Joins BetMGM
Before the US Supreme Court threw PASPA in the trash can, the NFL was in a league of its own. It was more open to sports betting than the other pro leagues, but stood beside its brothers opposing legalized sports betting out of unity. NFL players, both active and retired, have become prominent features in sportsbooks over the past couple of years, and BetMGM is more than happy to recruit more than just a few good men to be brand ambassadors. Curiously, according to information available on the BetMGM website, the sportsbook currently doesn’t have any female brand ambassadors, despite studies that show the prominent role women have in the betting space.
Lynch, known as “Beast Mode” during his time in the league, is the latest athlete to be added to BetMGM’s brand ambassador ranks. The former All-Pro running back comes to the sportsbook after having spent 12 years in the NFL. He will be seen across a lot of the sportsbook’s marketing initiatives, and will also make appearances on social media and in person on behalf of the operator. The Super Bowl champion has a fanbase that extends across the US, having played for the Buffalo Bills, the Seattle Seahawks and the Raiders when they were still in Oakland.
The appointment is “dope” and “an honor,” according to Lynch. He is only the latest in a line of recruits to join BetMGM, including the NHL’s Wayne Gretzky, who was tapped last month, and the NBA’s Jalen Rose, who joined in May. Another football great, Barry Sanders, was added to the Brand Ambassador ranks this past February.
Successful Career after Football
Many athletes retire from their sport and ride off into the sunset, but there are some who find tremendous success as entrepreneurs. Lynch falls into the latter category, having launched his BeastMode lifestyle brand that now includes, among other things, a marketing agency and an apparel business. He is also behind a new brand of cannabis products, Dodi, and is the founder of a philanthropic organization out of Oakland, CA, Fam 1st Family Foundation.
BeastMode was already close to the MGM brand before Lynch became an ambassador for the sportsbook. Earlier this month, The Shoppes at Mandalay Place, the retail space of the MGM Resorts-owned Mandalay Bay casino, welcomed a Beast Mode store. The stores can also be found in Oakland, CA, and Seattle, WA.