Cavaliers Stay Game Ready In Ohio With New Fubo Gaming Partnership

Written By Derek Helling on October 7, 2021

The Cleveland Cavaliers continue with their mission of being the sports team with the most gambling partnerships in a state without legal online gambling. The latest such partnership comes in the form of a Cavaliers-Fubo Gaming partnership that will be highly visible to fans of the NBA franchise in the near future.

Along with broadcast and in-stadium exposure, Fubo’s sponsorship of the Cavs means in-game activations and the return of a gamified element of the team’s mobile app. If the future plays out the right way, it could become much more.

The details on the Cavaliers-Fubo Gaming partnership

In exchange for an undisclosed amount of money, here’s what Fubo gets:

  • Activation on Cavs digital and social channels and other marketing assets
  • An “integrated marketing campaign highlighted by high-impact broadcast-visible signage”
  • Presence on Cavs radio and television game programming
  • Presenting sponsorship of Cavs Pick ‘Em

Cavs Pick ‘Em is the free-to-play live predictive gaming platform that debuted last season in the franchise’s app. It will be back for the 2021-22 season thanks to this deal.

Fubo Gaming is a recent player on the North American gambling scene. It’s a spinoff of FuboTV and integrates the streaming platform into its sportsbook product.

It just launched its online sportsbook in Iowa and also has market access deals for that and/or iGaming in four other states, including nearby Indiana and Pennsylvania.

For the time being in OH, this is essentially another brand turning Cavs games into its commercials. In the coming years, it could balloon to a lot more.

Cavs continue to position themselves for bigger things

This is the first partnership the franchise has made with a gambling company. In April, the Cavs signed Betway as a sponsor.  Franchise owner Dan Gilbert has been involved in the casino industry in Detroit in the past.

This is the first deal with an NBA team for Fubo Gaming. It could become its premier sports partnership, too. That’s if things work out right in the state.

Should sports betting ever become legal in OH, and the law allow for organizations like the Cavs to hold licenses, the team could expand upon its deal with Fubo. Fubo would be ready to step in and run the book on the Cavs’ behalf.

That’s still a possibility even if the Cavs can’t operate a sportsbook themselves. Fubo could still become the official sportsbook of the Cavs, for example. Another option would be for Fubo to sponsor a betting lounge at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.

Such spaces in other stadiums are essentially “fan caves” adorned by branding for the sponsor. Some of them offer a “sports bar-esque” atmosphere, too.

All of that’s dependent on the state someday expanding legal gambling options. For now, Cavs fans can simply expect to see a smattering of branding for a gambling company they can’t legally access in OH.

Photo by Courtesy of Fubo Gaming
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Kansas City, Mo. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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