The Contrarian Opportunity in Sports Stocks (CHDN, DKNG, BTDG, DKS)

Experts continue to see a coming vaccine for the virus behind the pandemic, and hospitalizations and deaths continue to diverge from case numbers, which is another very positive potential signal, despite mainstream clamoring about a looming “twindemic” disaster, as a purported second wave coincides with cold and flu season.

All of this may add up to risk for bear bets in the market, especially those targeting the sports industry, which has been reeling from a lack of public participation in live events. That may represent a potential opportunity for access to long-term growth potential at a discount at present prices.

With that in mind, we take a look at some of the most interesting stocks in the space, including: Churchill Downs Inc (NASDAQ:CHDN), Draftkings Inc (Nasdaq:DKNG), B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG), and Dicks Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE:DKS).


Churchill Downs Inc (NASDAQ:CHDN) is a prime specimen for bears looking to bet against live events due to a lack of public perception of safety. The company has the double whammy of also being part of the gaming industry, which has taken a big hit as well.

The company bills itself as an industry-leading racing, online wagering, and gaming entertainment company anchored by our iconic flagship event – The Kentucky Derby. The company owns and operates Derby City Gaming, a historical racing machine facility in Louisville, Kentucky. It also owns and operates the largest online horse racing wagering platform in the U.S.,, and sports betting and iGaming through its BetAmerica platform in multiple states. CHDN is also a leader in brick-and-mortar casino gaming with approximately 11,000 slot machines and video lottery terminals and 200 table games in eight states.

Churchill Downs Inc (NASDAQ:CHDN) most recently announced its plans to open simulcast and historical racing machine operations at Oak Grove Racing, Gaming & Hotel in Oak Grove, Kentucky, to the public on Friday, September 18. According to the release, Oak Grove will debut 1,325 state-of-the-art HRMs with some of the best themes from Ainsworth, Scientific Games and International Gaming Technology. Dining and beverage options include Garrison Oak Steakhouse, two quick serve eateries, a coffee house, sports bar and luxurious lobby bar. The second phase of the Oak Grove project will open in October 2020 and will include a 128-room hotel, equestrian center, amphitheater, and RV Park.

“We have an exceptional team poised to deliver a premier entertainment experience and regional destination for Western Kentucky and nearby Nashville, Tennessee,” said Bill Carstanjen, CEO of CDI. “We are committed to investments like Oak Grove that will help support live racing at Kentucky racetracks by generating larger purses and attracting better horses.”

And the stock has been acting well over recent days, up something like 12% in that time.

Churchill Downs, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHDN) managed to rope in revenues totaling $185.1M in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of -61.2%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company has a strong balance sheet, with cash levels far exceeding current liabilities ($699M against $488.2M).


Draftkings Inc (Nasdaq:DKNG) is well aligned with the fate of the NFL at this point. And, given recent news of virus outbreaks for the Titans and Vikings, and possibly others, the stock has held up quite well, but may still have further to squeeze if we see contrarian positives on the virus front in the near term.

In a nutshell, the company provides users with daily sports, sports betting, and iGaming opportunities. It is also involved in the design and development of sports betting and casino gaming platform software for online and retail sportsbook, and casino gaming products. The company distributes its product offerings through various channels, including traditional websites, direct app downloads, and direct-to-consumer digital platforms.

Draftkings Inc (Nasdaq:DKNG) most recently announced that Erik Bradbury has been named the Company’s Chief Accounting Officer and principal accounting officer effective September 10, 2020, reporting to Jason Park, the Company’s Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Bradbury, who brings more than 16 years of experience in corporate accounting to DraftKings, was most recently a Partner with Ernst & Young and served as a Professional Accounting Fellow at Financial Executives International.

“We are thrilled to have Erik join DraftKings at this exciting time,” said Jason Park, DraftKings Chief Financial Officer. “Erik brings a breadth of expertise working with public companies applying U.S. GAAP, IFRS, and SEC reporting requirements, which will enhance our already strong corporate accounting team and help scale this function as the Company continues to grow.”

And the stock has been acting well over recent days, up something like 19% in that time. Shares of the stock have powered higher over the past month, rallying roughly 51% in that time on strong overall action.

Draftkings Inc (Nasdaq:DKNG) brought in over $71 million in its last quarterly financial data.


B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) is “the premier development league in MMA”. That’s a pretty good spot. Especially considering that the company is verticalizing on the media side, creating strong marketing and distribution agreements to showcase its top talent across the country and around the world.

The company operates live events, pay-per-view media, gyms, and other resources to maximize the development of future stars in the MMA sport. B2Digital operates a number of fighting events brands, including Pinnacle, HRMMA, Strikehard, and others, and has developed and deployed the systems and technologies for the operation of the B2 Fighting Series. This includes social media marketing, event management, digital ticketing sales, digital video distribution, digital marketing, PPV, FTV, merchandise sales, brand management, and financial control systems. B2Digital owns all rights for TV, internet, social media, media, merchandising and trademarks, and branding for the B2Digital companies.

B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) most recently announced that its Pinnacle Combat 32 MMA event in Farley, Iowa, on Saturday, September 26, featuring a combination of top amateur and pro fights, was another successful venture with a solid pay-per-view presence and sold out in-person attendance.

According to the release, the event drove larger in-person revenue levels on a per-ticket basis due to an increased in-person attendance allowance. The event also generated higher overall margins on each attendee ticket sold than in the Company’s prior event in Alabama.

“Iowa was a huge success that dramatically exceeded our expectations despite the headwinds presented by the difficult context,” commented Greg P. Bell, Chairman & CEO of B2Digital. “That success was driven by strong organic growth as our brand continues to rapidly expand. But it was also likely aided by a sense of pent-up demand for live MMA action. The other big success we saw on Saturday was a very strong performance from our new B2InstaStore marketing program. We gave our fighters, fans, and followers a resource for driving ticket sales and they have responded.”

B2Digital Inc (OTCMKTS:BTDG) has shown strong sales growth, and more importantly, has put in place a number of strategies pointing to accelerating breakout growth ahead, including innovations on the marketing front and an aggressive schedule of live PPV events this fall.


Dicks Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE:DKS) operates as a sporting goods retailer primarily in the eastern United States. It provides hardlines, including sporting goods equipment, fitness equipment, golf equipment, and hunting and fishing gear products; apparel; and footwear and accessories.

The company also owns and operates Golf Galaxy, Field & Stream, and other specialty concept stores; and e-commerce websites, as well as GameChanger, a youth sports mobile app for scheduling, communications, and live scorekeeping. As of May 02, 2020, it operated 726 DICK’S Sporting Goods stores.

Dicks Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE:DKS) just announced that it will expand its nationwide footprint with the opening of one DICK’S Sporting Goods store, one combination DICK’S and Golf Galaxy location, and one Golf Galaxy store in September. These new stores will bring approximately 150 collective jobs to communities through the hiring of full-time, part-time and temporary associates for the stores.

According to the company’s release, DICK’S Sporting Goods and Golf Galaxy locations will offer top-of-the-line in-store services and exclusive offerings in apparel, footwear and equipment from the Company’s own private brands, such as DSG, Tommy Armour, CALIA by Carrie Underwood, Field & Stream and Fitness Gear, as well as popular national vendors like Nike, adidas, YETI, The North Face, Callaway and TaylorMade.

The context for this announcement is a bit of a bid, with shares acting well over the past five days, up about 9% in that timeframe.

Dicks Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE:DKS) managed to rope in revenues totaling $2.7B in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of 20.1%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company is battling some balance sheet hurdles, with cash levels struggling to keep up with current liabilities ($1.1B against $2.3B, respectively).



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