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NJ To Finalize Rule For Celebrity Poker Players

State Hoping More Sites Use Celebs For Promotional Purposes


A rule change in New Jersey that will let online gambling sites in the Garden State hire celebrities to play for promotional purposes is set to be finalized early next year.

Though the rule has been around since late last year and some well-known poker players are already sponsored in New Jersey, the Division of Gaming Enforcement will put final approval on it after a public comment period concludes in early February, according to a report from Press of Atlantic City.

Casinos will be able pay celebrities to play by funding their accounts and allowing them to retain winnings, rather than just direct payment for endorsing the brand.

Through October, New Jersey online gambling is 17.6 percent to $121.6 million, compared to the first 10 months of 2014. The move to allow casinos to beef up their relationships with celebrity players for promotional purposes is designed to bolster the industry.

Revenue from online poker in October was $1.9 million down 2.8 percent year-over-year. This year has yielded $19.8 million in online poker revenue, compared to $25.1 million from January to October of last year.

This fall, New Jersey gave a license to PokerStars and Full Tilt. PokerStars, the world’s largest online poker site in terms of players, also has the world’s largest stable of sponsored pros, some of which are superstar professional athletes.