Las Vegas’ Billion-Dollar Bet on Texas Team
Bringing Basketball to Vegas
Last month, word spread that Miriam Adelson and her family were making a big move – selling $2 billion in Las Vegas Sands stock to buy a majority stake in the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks.
The decision left many in the sports and gambling worlds reeling, especially given the family’s deep ties to Las Vegas. The Adelsons’ empire, built by the late Sheldon Adelson, has long been headquartered in the city, despite no longer owning any casino resorts there.
And with Las Vegas emerging as a premier sports destination, the prospect of an NBA team there seems all but certain. Adam Silver, the NBA Commissioner, has even suggested that it’s a matter of when, not if, the city gets its own team. Retired NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal has expressed interest in a Vegas team as well.
Given these factors, many were left puzzled by the Adelson family’s decision to invest in a Dallas team.
The Texas Connection
In a statement to CNBC, the Adelsons said, “The Adelson and Dumont families are honored to have the opportunity to be stewards of this great franchise. Through our commitment and additional investment in the team, we look forward to partnering with Mark Cuban to build on the team’s success and legacy in Dallas and beyond.”
The move raises the question of why the Adelsons are throwing billions into a Dallas team. The answer may lie in the family’s investments into politics and lobbying in Texas, where they have been trying to push for more widespread legalization of gambling. With Las Vegas Sands making efforts to pursue gaming licenses elsewhere, the investment in the Mavericks gains new significance.
Failure of Legislation
However, recent attempts to push forward legislation for casino gambling in Texas have met with failure. This has left potential moves such as building a resort or casino resort development in Texas up in the air.
Regardless, the Adelsons’ decision to invest in the Mavericks may still prove to be a smart move. Former Las Vegas Sands board member Jason Ader suggests that NBA teams are likely to continue appreciating in value, offering the family a lucrative return on their investment.
Regardless of the outcome in Texas, the Adelson family stands to benefit. They will continue to own over 50% of Las Vegas Sands stock, and their investment in the Mavericks may just exemplify their smart approach to business, as previous sports investments have fared well.
The decision to strongly position themselves in Texas and strengthen ties with the state could speak volumes about their strategic business acumen. Whether or not they receive approval for a casino license in Texas, their latest bet on the Dallas Mavericks may yet prove to be a game-changing move.