DraftKings' PGA Deal Gives Golf Fans More Innovative Play, Says Chief Business Officer

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Matt Wallace, right, of England, walks with his caddie David McNeilly after teeing off on the third hole during the second round of the Travelers Championship golf tournament at TPC River Highlands, Friday, June 26, 2020, in Cromwell, Conn.
July 28, 2020
DraftKings is now the first-ever official betting operator for the PGA Tour. 
"This is going to afford a lot of opportunities for golf fans to come in, whether they want to play fantasy sports or place bets," Ezra Kucharz, chief business officer at DraftKings, told Cheddar Tuesday. "We have a sizable audience that wagers on golf."
The expanded relationship gives DraftKings rights to use data and highlights to flesh out the golf sections of its mobile app. It will also allow DraftKings to advertise on PGA's platforms.
Golf returned to action in early June, the first semblance of normalcy for sports fans since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March.
In this time of limited action, DraftKings has gotten creative with its offerings. It even allowed users to bet on the annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest on the Fourth of July. Joey Chestnut loyalists (and wagerers) were not disappointed as the reigning hot dog-eating champion held the line with a dominating performance.
DraftKings' diversification may prove to be key. Major League Baseball became the first major North American sports league to reopen last week, but it's not clear how long it will last. Doubts are rising about whether play can continue after a coronavirus outbreak struck in the Miami Marlins clubhouse just three games into their season.
The Miami Herald is reporting at least 15 Marlins players and two coaches have tested positive for coronavirus. Now the Marlins are on pause until August 3, and their opponents at the onset of the outbreak, the Phillies, are on hold until July 31, as the league reconfigures the schedule.
Although DraftKings' business is sports betting, Kucharz said clearly that health should be the top priority in deciding whether leagues should start playing again.
"First and foremost, we think the most important thing is player and staff safety," he said. "We think that all those things are being addressed by the league."
Despite the baseball delay, the DraftKings executive expects broader activity from fans to continue.
"I think you're going to see continued support from the sports fan in betting on baseball and playing daily fantasy sports on baseball," Kucharz said. "Just as they have been over the past few weeks or month with the PGA Tour."
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