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NJ/NY Gotham FC goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger reacts in the second half as we look at 888casino and 888poker exiting the New Jersey online casino market.
NJ/NY Gotham FC goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger reacts in the second half against San Diego Wave FC at Red Bull Arena. Photo by: Jonathan Jones/USA TODAY Sports.

888casino and 888poker finally made good on their desire and promise to exit the booming New Jersey legal gambling market. One of our best live betting sites has been in the process of exiting the U.S. sports betting scene.

The company was initially expected to cease operations in the Garden State on June 3, but for some unforeseen reason, June 17 became the date the company’s platforms went dark. Users of the New Jersey online casino platform could not make deposits to their accounts 30 days before the shutdown, but they did get an extra two weeks of wagering activity with the 888 brands.

Hard Rock Digital, the Seminole Tribe of Florida-owned legal gambling platform, was able to take advantage of the rebranded evoke platform (formerly known as 888 Holdings) and its desire to exit the U.S. legal gambling space altogether. It purchased evoke’s U.S. assets in March.

A statement on the 888Casino website now reads,“888Casino is shutting down in New Jersey on June 17, and partnering with Hard Rock Bet. Deposits will be disabled 30 days prior to closure. Please contact support with any questions or concerns. Go to to sign up today”

The story

888 Holdings, which changed its name to evoke during a shift in focus in America has experienced a rather tough go on American soil most recently, which in part, forced the company to sell its U.S assets to Hard Rock Digital.

First came the demise of a key partnership with Sports Illustrated, the iconic American sporting institution, which shockingly announced its unfortunate desire to close up shop altogether. evoke was tethered to the Sports Illustrated brand in a host of American states, and once it went down, so too did 888 Holdings’ status in the American market.

The 888casino brand had only been operational in the New Jersey market. evoke’s presence in other U.S. markets was in partnership and through the SI Casino and Sportsbook name.

Strategic review

SI’s demise and other factors forced what evoke brass called a “strategic review” in March for the company’s entire business-to-customer set-up in America. It led to the ultimate decision to dramatically step back from its businesses stateside.

That review saw evoke enter into a sales agreement with Hard Rock Digital for the 888 products in New Jersey and around the U.S.

With the Seminoles already offering its Hard Rock brand in the New Jersey market, 888casino and 888poker became somewhat redundant and will now be referred to as Hard Rock Bet in the Garden State.

evoke not totally out on the North American market

Despite shuttering its online casinos and sportsbooks in the U.S., evoke will still have a presence in the American market through its revamped Poker 8 platform.

evoke is the company that supplies technical software and knowhow for the popular World Series of Poker (WSOP) online product in several jurisdictions around the country, including New Jersey.

The company recently announced a “generational upgrade” that will now allow online poker players in New Jersey, Michigan and Nevada to engage each other. Player pools from all three states, thanks to the upgrade, will be combined, as will the number of cash games, tournaments and prize pools.

The upgrade will also feature better graphics, smoother gameplay on all mobile devices and provide better overall functionality for users of the site. A revamped Player Account Management System will also be coming to Poker 8 users.