MGM National Harbor, Maryland Live duke it out

MGM National Harbor strapped a jet pack on Maryland gaming revenue, up an eye-popping 38% last month. The bad news for other operators is that, once you subtract MGM, gaming revenues are down 11%. However, the fact that the declivity isn’t worse shows that MGM is growing the market, as it was intended to do. Despite generating almost $46 million in revenue, National Harbor was still a few decimal points behind Maryland Live. In terms of slot win per day, the two properties are running neck and neck, but when it comes to table win, MGM has a huge edge, with a probable $4,782/table/day against Live’s $2,921. The latter was 14% down from February 2016, while Horseshoe Baltimore ($22 million) ceded 12%.

GLPI made 5% less at Hollywood Perryville, grossing $6 million. The outlying casinos were immune from cannibalization, with Ocean Downs up 3.5% ($4 million) and Golden Entertainment enjoying 14% growth, to over $4 million. Across the border, at Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races, slot play was minimally affected, down 5%, but table revenues were hit hard, -22%. This is more or less the scenario many feared for the Penn National Gaming/GLPI property and it seems to be playing out to form.

* Thanks no doubt to slot routes, foot traffic at Illinois casinos was down 7% last month, although players spent 5% more, handing the Land of Lincoln a 2.5% revenue decrease. Expectations for Boyd Gaming‘s Par-A-Dice were so low that a 8% decline, to $7 million, exceeded Wall Street projections. Rivers Casino led the state, with $33 million, a 1% dip, but it was revenue-negative month for all the Penn/GLPI properties. Argosy Belle was down 3% ($4 million), Empress Joliet ceded 2% ($10 million) and Hollywood Aurora had the worst of it, down 7% to $9 million. Against this backdrop, MGM Resorts International had a good month at Grand Victoria in Elgin, up 1% to $14 million.

Jumer’s Casino Rock Island took a thwack, down 7% to $6 million, while GLPI’s Casino Queen was off 5%, to $9 million. Harrah’s Joliet was flat, with a second-place $14.5 million, while Harrah’s Metropolis was down 4.5% to $6 million. This doesn’t look like the economic backdrop against which to add four racinos and six casinos, does it?

* Jackie Robinson‘s All-Debt, er, All-Net Arena is showing faint signs of life after a protracted coma. Robinson claims he can make the numbers pencil out even with no sports team in residence but if his future partners are as dodgy as extinct SL Hare, keep this one classified under “vaporware.”

* There have been no new developments in the Sands Bethlehem sale, enabling the Las Vegas Review-Journal to continue pretending that it’s all quiet on the eastern front.

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