Massachusetts Casinos Close to Normal Pace After Reopening
Massachusetts casinos reopened in July to mixed results, but there were some encouraging signs for the facilities after months of inactivity.
The three casinos — Encore Boston Harbor in Everett, Plainridge Park Casino in Plainville and MGM Springfield — combined for Gross Gaming Revenue of $45.422 million in July.
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The casinos were only open for part of the month. Plainridge Park reopened July 8, while Springfield MGM and Encore Boston Harbor reopened days later. All three had been closed since mid March.
In February, the last full month before the state’s casinos closed because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Bay State’s three casinos combined for $86.075 million in GGR. That February rate works out to about $3 million per day in GGR.
Per-Day Average Down But Not Severely
Taking the numbers on average, Encore Boston Harbor had about $1.284 million GGR per day in July, Springfield MGM averaged $509,703 a day and Plainridge Park averaged $322,536, according to figures reported by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. Combined, the three casinos averaged $2.12 million a day for July — off the daily pace of February, for sure, but pretty respectable considering the casinos are operating at reduced capacity because of social distancing concerns.
It’s also worth noting that poker, roulette and craps are unavailable at this time, again because of sanitary concerns surrounding the spread of COVID-19. That reduces the daily gaming intake by a significant amount at the Springfield and Encore casinos (Plainridge has slots only).
The newest casino in the state, Encore Boston Harbor, had the most coin in for July, at $204,503,137, and had $26,977,807 in total slot and table gaming GGR.
MGM Springfield had $108,898,647 in handle and $10,703,754 in total GGR in July. Plainridge Park accounted for $89,186,387 of coin in and $7,740,864 GGR (again, slots only).
Gaming Picture in Massachusetts
Gaming in Massachusetts has been progressing in fits and starts.
Last year, the state’s Gaming Commission rejected a proposal for a casino at Brockton Fair Grounds, about 25 miles south of Boston.
And sports betting — which would undoubtedly be very popular in a market boasting MLB’s Red Sox, the NBA’s Celtics, the NHL’s Bruins, the NFL’s New England Patriots and Major League Soccer’s New England Revolution — has not been approved in the state.
There was optimism in late July that sports betting might move forward in the state, but a bill to legalize the practice was stripped out of a State Senate bill, killing a proposal that had passed the House. The legislature will continue to meet until the end of the year, so a sports betting bill revival is still possible for Massachusetts.
Jim Tomlin has more than 30 years of experience in sports journalism as an editor and writer. He has covered pro and college sports from football, baseball, basketball, soccer, golf, motorsports and more for publications such as the Tampa Bay Times, SaturdayDownSouth.com, SaturdayTradition.com and FanRag Sports. He now lends his expertise to TopUSCasinos.com, among other duties.