The National Hockey League (NHL) has named MGM Resorts the first official sports betting partner of the League. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, joined by MGM Resorts chairman & CEO Jim Murren, made the announcement today.

Talking about the rationale behind the deal, Bettman said: “The new sports betting landscape presents a unique opportunity for fan engagement utilizing technology and data that are exclusive to our League. As a leading global gaming operator and entertainment company, MGM Resorts is the perfect partner for us to begin our transformative entry into this space. Fan engagement, technological advancement and innovation are paramount to our progressive approach and will be at the forefront of everything we do.”

MGM Resorts, which is also an official resorts partner of the NHL, will have the ability to market many of its products and services to the league’s millions of fans via its various media platforms and events. The firm will also use official NHL branding in its land-based and digital sports betting offerings within the United States.

Murren stated: “We couldn’t be more excited to enter into this historic partnership with the NHL. The League is home to some of the most exciting action in sports, and we are thrilled to join with them to create new immersive and exhilarating experiences for hockey fans. Combining MGM Resorts’ world-class sports betting operations and technology with the NHL’s top-level competition, iconic brands and cutting-edge data will further transform the rapidly growing sports betting marketplace and solidify our position at the forefront of the industry.”

As part of the relationship, MGM Resorts will have access to enhanced NHL proprietary game data that will be generated by the League’s state-of-the-art tracking systems currently under development.