Resorts-Mohegan Sun pact a done deal

Atlantic City's worst-kept secret was confirmed publicly Tuesday afternoons as Mohegan Gaming Advisors, the consulting arm of Mohegan Sun Tribal Authority, was officially introduced as the new operator of Resorts Casino-Hotel. Officials from both organizations assembled at Resorts to lay out the details of the partnership that, pending state regulatory approval, is expected to take effect in late fall. According to Mitchell Etess,  CEO of MGTA, most of his company's presence at the oldest legal casino east of Nevada will be behind the scenes, with an emphasis on marketing and employee training.  Etess, a former Trump Plaza executive also promised Resorts' entertainment and special events strategies will benefit from the financial muscle of Mohegan Sun, which owns Mohegan Sun casino in Connecticut and Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs casino and racetrack in Wilkes-Barre. The partnership, said Etess,  will "open new doors and entertainment that might not be affordable" to smaller properties like Resorts. Etess, who spoke of the cross-marketing possibilities between Resorts and Mohegan Sun's two other properties, also announced he has asked Aaron Gomes, Resort' executive vice president of operations and son of the late Dennis Gomes, who was the casino's co-owner and CEO before his death in late February, to remain part of the management team. Gomes, however, did not make his intentions known. Resorts' majority owner, Morris Bailey, insisted the 34-year-old gaming hall was not for sale, although the deal does include some ownership on the part of Mohegan Sun.