Mark Cuban has never been one to do things quietly. The outspoken owner of the Dallas Mavericks voiced his support for Texas casino gambling earlier this month at the Chase Make Your Move Summit.
In an interview with the Dallas Morning News at the summit, he said he would love to see a casino in his plans for a new resort and Mavericks basketball arena.
“When you think of all the places you want to save up to vacation, Texas isn’t one of them,” Cuban said. “There’s no real destination that you save up for. That’s a problem and I think resort gaming would have a huge impact.”
Cuban said he’d partner with Las Vegas Sands to make the development happen.
What would Texas casino gaming look like in Cuban’s world?
In an ideal world, Cuban would like a new development built in the Dallas area that would include a resort, a new Mavericks arena, and a casino.
The type of gaming Cuban is pushing for would be specific to resorts. In other words, legalizing resort-style casinos would mean that casinos would only be legal if they were located in a designated resort area.
Considering Texas lawmakers’ long-standing disdain for casino gaming and sports betting, resort-style gaming could be the exact type of limited gambling that could appease Austin’s finicky decision-makers.
Yet even Cuban’s idea scares lawmakers and one only needs to go back to May to confirm it. In May, Texas lawmakers shut down a bill to introduce eight resort casinos before the legislative session ended.
Texas Legislature will meet again in 2025, which means it could be at least four years before we see full-service casinos open in Texas. That timeline may work for Cuban, as his ambitious resort-casino-arena project would be a multi-year project.
What will happen with sports betting?
Though Cuban didn’t mention it, casinos and sports betting have gone hand-in-hand in their fight for legalization in the Lone Star State.
Earlier this year, a sports betting bill passed through the House with a two-thirds majority, a win for sports betting proponents. However, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick quashed the win by saying the bill would not be referred to the Senate because it lacked a Republican majority.
And while sports betting may not have support among Republican lawmakers, Texans seem to welcome it.
For example, the Texas Sports Betting Alliance (TBSA), a group of sports betting proponents pushing for legalization in Texas, noted that there were 1.1 million attempts to place a sports bet within Texas borders from Sept. 1 to Oct. 23.
The TBSA noted that those attempts were up nearly 70% over the same period in comparison to 2022. While a general increase in sports betting interest surely drove some of that growth, the Texas Rangers’ run to the World Series likely fostered a significant part of the increase.