When Nevada started issuing online poker licenses last year, a number of operators quickly jumped in to get a piece of the action. As it stands now, two online poker sites – WSOP.com and Ultimate Poker – are already up and running and now, three more casinos are expected to join in on the fun.
But at the moment, none of the three – MGM Casino, Golden Nugget Casino, and Boyd Casino – appear to be close to being ready to go live and as such, all three have requested extensions for their online poker license applications.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board is expected to hold a meeting this month and one of the discussions will be on how to act on the extension requests from these casinos. From the side of the casinos, more time to prepare, test, and develop their online poker systems are of paramount importance because nobody wants to go live and then find themselves having to worry about bugs and glitches that could undermine the credibility of their business offerings.
Should MGM, Golden Nugget, and Boyd be granted these extensions, the three companies will have an extra six months to work out all the kinks, fix all the glitches, and cover all the bases that come in trying to ensure a seamless online poker system for each of the companies. The timing of the six-month extension would also allow all three casinos to wait until New Jersey and Delaware open their own real money, online poker offerings. At that time, the expectations are that a larger player pool than what currently exists will be able to take advantage of interstate game play, something Nevada is open to exploring.
The problem of player liquidity is a problem in Nevada these days, especially with WSOP.com and Ultimate Poker already offering online poker in the state.
Nothing has been set in stone yet as far as interstate compacts are concerned, but there’s a strong likelihood that states offering legal online poker are open to joining forces to provide a stable network where residents from each of these states can play with others.
For now, though, MGM, Golden Nugget, and Boyd are taking it a step at a time. And the current step that needs to be addressed is to get their online poker systems in order before they open them for play to the public. One step at a time, so it seems, is the best course of action to take.