About PlayAZ

PlayAZ operates under the network of Catena Media regional sites sites offering local and regional news and resources pertaining to legal and regulated gambling.

Our mission: Provide readers with unbiased, helpful and entertaining information relating to legalized gambling in Arizona, including sports betting, tribal casinos, lottery, and daily fantasy sports.

Independently owned and operated, PlayAZ features an editorial and reporting team that enjoys full control over news content that is published. We do not have ownership interest in any land-based or online sportsbooks or tribal casinos.

Meet the PlayAZ team of experts

The Arizona-focused site boasts a variety of industry veterans and experts, as well as professional journalists who have covered regulated gambling, sports, and business.

As well as crafting stories for our site, the staff at PlayAZ have also lent their knowledge and credibility to several local media outlets. Find some of our media appearances here.

Former Managing Editor: Calli Varner

Calli is the former managing editor of PlayAZ. She combines her background in journalism with her knowledge of gambling and love for sports to deliver quality coverage of emerging gaming markets in the US. As a lifelong resident of Arizona, Calli provided unique and local reporting on sports betting and casinos in Arizona.


PlayAZ Contributor: Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a long-time contributor to Catena Media’s regional and national sites. He broke into covering the legal gambling industry in North America in 2018 while PASPA still existed. Within a broader scope of gaming, Helling focuses on reporting on breaking news plus legislation and litigation happening in the industry. Derek got his degree in journalism from the University of Iowa.

Jarrett Huff

PlayAZ Contributor: Jarrett Huff

Jarrett Huff is a former sports editor at Northern Star Media from Wonder Lake, Illinois. Friends and family will tell you he’s an NBA history nerd with a diehard passion for the Chicago Bulls, Bears, and Cubs. Jarrett has covered the legal betting market for a number of regional and sports sites at Catena.

PlayAZ Contributor: T.J. McBride

T.J. McBride is a writer and reporter based in Denver who covers the Denver Nuggets as a beat writer. He contributes regularly to PlayTexas on issues surrounding the illegal gaming market. His byline can be found across many websites such as ESPN, FiveThirtyEight, Bleacher Report, and others.


PlayAZ Contributor: Hill Kirby

Hill Kerby is a proponent of safe, legal betting, and contributes quality journalism to the growing gambling industry. He has a background in poker, sports, and psychology, all of which he incorporates into his writing.


Grant Lucas, PlayAZ

PlayAZ Contributor: Grant Lucas

Grant Lucas is a longtime sportswriter who has covered the high school, collegiate and professional levels. A graduate of Linfield College in McMinnville, Grant has covered games and written features and columns surrounding prep sports, Linfield and Oregon State athletics, the Portland Trail Blazers, and golf throughout his career.

Read more about Grant Lucas

CJ Pierre, PlayAZ

Former Contributor: CJ Pierre

CJ Pierre is a multimedia journalist who resides in the Phoenix-Metro Area in Arizona. He has covered news and sports for over a decade for both online and TV broadcasts. Born and raised in Minneapolis, he’s an alum of Minnesota State University Moorhead. As a reporter and videographer, he has covered high school, college, and professional sports, including the Arizona Cardinals, Phoenix Suns, Minnesota Vikings, and North Dakota State.

Read more about CJ Pierre

Our Parent Company: Catena Media

While exclusive to Arizona, PlayAZ is just one of the dozens of Play-branded and state-specific sites in the Catena Media network. In order to operate as a media site providing information regarding the legal gambling industry, we must go through vendor licensing and registration to ensure we stick to strict guidelines.

Our content

Throughout the PlayAZ website, readers will discover an array of content:

  • News articles covering gambling laws and regulation, sports betting, land-based casinos, and the lottery
  • Reviews for online sportsbooks active or soon to launch in Arizona
  • Resource pages pertaining to legal gambling options in Arizona
  • Pages for professional sports teams in the state and how to legally bet on them
  • Explainers on how to wager on sports leagues (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL) as well as guides to better understand legal sports betting
  • Video updates on the latest happenings regarding Arizona gambling

At PlayAZ, readers can trust our content to be:

  • Factual
  • Informative
  • Unbiased
  • Transparent
  • Honest

Our editorial process and policies

At PlayAZ, it’s of the utmost importance that we provide trustworthy, reliable resources and information as they relate to legal and regulated gambling in Arizona. Citing only reputable sources, our work shines with credibility, honesty and transparency.

To ensure all of this, the PlayAZ team follows these editorial guidelines:

  • All editorial content is in no way affected by our advertising relationships. We have editorial independence.
  • We aim to only publish objective and credible information regarding legal sports betting and gambling in Arizona. In doing so, we establish ourselves as a reliable resource for bettors as well as individuals wanting to learn more about regulated gambling in the state.
  • We welcome any feedback from readers, as we want to ensure all of our information remains up to date. For any corrections or general inquiries, please email us.

Read more about our editorial process and guidelines for content integrity.

Advertising disclosure

When navigating through PlayAZ, readers might notice some advertisements for regulated gambling sites in Arizona. While we have affiliate partnerships with those companies, they do not have editorial control of our content. What’s more, each brand that we promote is legally licensed to operate in Arizona through the Arizona Department of Gaming.

In addition to not accepting paid advertising outside of these partnerships, we do not publish guest posts or submissions. We at PlayAZ only post stories from our team of professional journalists and experts on the Arizona gambling industry.

While we do benefit financially from these partnerships, the goal at PlayAZ remains: Provide credible, objective information about legal online gaming options in Arizona. This mission serves as the best tactic for customers, operators, readers and us at PlayAZ.

Contact us

If you would like to tap into our team of experts and analysts, our team at PlayAZ is here to help. Our reputation, experience, and knowledge can provide any help you need to provide informational, reliable, and credible stories relating to legal sports betting, casino gambling, lottery, and daily fantasy sports.

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