Steve Wynn Comments on Adelson, Online Poker, New Resort

Steve Wynn, the outspoken Chairman of Wynn Resorts Ltd., told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he is not sure where he stands on online gaming, but thinks it is questionable whether polarizing Las Vegas Sands Chairman Sheldon Adelson can actually stop it. In the report, Wynn compared the attempts to stop online poker to those nearly a hundred years ago with the era of prohibition in the United States.

So How Do You Really Feel?

When it comes to his position on the matter, Wynn skillfully danced on both sides of the line. He stated that he is not sure whether the efforts in New Jersey to legalize online gaming will have any effort in Congress to pass federal legislation in the United States. He does feel that Adelson’s stance “resonates with a lot of people” but at the same time, stated in the article that when it comes to online gambling, “I‘m neither a proponent nor opponent of it. I’m an observer of this process and the chairman of a publicly traded company that is required to pay attention to such things.”

Wynn’s Las Vegas properties does have a relationship with Caesars, who has already launched an online presence in Nevada. Wynn stated, “We have one of those… permits,” to press but then stated, “I’m not sure where online gaming is going.” He then said that his company will stay in the game, but conceded that they are not the leader for either side. Wynn did acknowledge that he knows that Gary Loveman, the Chairman and CEO of Caesars Entertainment, believes in legalizing online poker and gaming as strongly as Adelson opposes it.

Wynn Focusing on Massachusetts

While Caesars and Harrahs are focusing on the online gaming space, and Sands is opposing it, Wynn is using the time to build a new resort near Boston, in nearby Everett, Massachusetts. The resort is purported to be a $1.5 billion project, which is the only project in this part of the state that received approval from voters. Citizens in other areas of the state, specifically East Boston and Milford, shot down rival proposals for construction of new casino resorts. The only other project to receive approval is in the western part of the state and was awarded to MGM Resorts International.

Final Vetting Underway for Boston Project

Wynn has to wait a few weeks to find out if his company has passed the state’s vetting process, characterized by an extensive background check into his company and all sub-contractors. This same process recently put the kibosh on an initiative from Caesars in East Boston, as concerns were raised over a licensing deal from a company that was partly owned by an alleged Russian mafia boss.

New Floral Exhibition at the Wynn Hotel

Readers curious to know the context of Wynn’s comments made to the Las Vegas Review-Journal should know that they took place during the unveiling of a new floral exhibition at the Wynn Resort in Las Vegas. Over 110,000 flowers make up the new pieces, one a colorful carousel, and the other a hot air balloon piece. Wynn had a comment about the floral arrangements too, “The biggest thrill in the world to me is when someone comes in here and goes, ‘Ooooooh woooow!’ and if I don’t go wow, why would you go wow?” Fair enough, Mr. Wynn.

Sean Gibson
Written by
Sean Gibson
Sean Gibson has been an insider in the poker and casino industry for a number of years. Gibson has worked with many different media outlets and has covered events such as the World Series of Poker Main Event, the World Poker Tour Championship, and an infinite number of online events. He plays both 6-max and Full Ring No Limit Hold'em and can be found playing at either the Oceans 11 cardroom in Oceanside, CA or at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas.

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