The Morning Call floated the theory based on what the publication was told by analysts.
“It remains unclear why the sale fell through, but analysts have said changes proposed by the state legislature could be enough to give a potential buyer pause,” wrote reporters Matt Assad and Nicole Radzievich.
Those legislative changes would greatly expand the state’s gambling laws to include PA online casinos and daily fantasy sports. Some of the changes involve extremely high tax rates for iGaming that would make it unappealing to operators like MGM.
CEO said Sands had a buyer
What’s unclear about this whole situation is how interested MGM was in the first place. The Morning Call reports Sands CEO Mark Juliano sent an email to employees telling them the casino had an interested buyer.
Because Sands is part of Las Vegas Sands Corp., it would have made sense for the parent company to come out with a statement on the supposed sale.
However, Las Vegas Sands never made an official comment about the situation, leaving us to wonder how legitimate the MGM sale really was.
Sands is a thriving revenue generator
The supposed buyout of Sands wasn’t really based on any red flags or failings. In fact, Sands is widely considered one of two heavyweights in the state, along with Parx.
According to the 2016-17 fiscal year numbers from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, Sands trails only Parx in revenue. The two casinos make up more than 20 percent of the slot revenue the state received in December 2016 from its 12 casinos.
Those same statistics show Sands was the leader in table games as well, accounting for about a quarter of that revenue.
Sands is a poker powerhouse
Aside from being a top-tier revenue generator in slots and table games, Sands also has a reputation as the top poker destination in that part of the country.
Some experts have gone as far as to crown it the king of poker in the region, citing its facilities as a big reason why people flock to the Bethlehem property.
Sands offers Las Vegas-style amenities that include comped drinks, massage services and other perks, as well as nearby 24-hour restaurants and cafes.
Like the competing Hollywood Casino, Sands’ poker room has a bad-beat jackpot that, at the time of publishing, was north of $370,000.