Michigan online sports betting looks ready to launch as soon as November 2020. Although Michigan bettors can currently place bets at a retail sportsbook location, including three in Detroit, the process evolved with fits and starts.
Michigan legalized all forms of online gaming last year. This includes sports betting, online casinos, and online poker. Bettors knew from the start that it would take time for the Michigan Gaming Control Board to set the rules and regulations for online gambling, as well as to verify all sports betting apps before the first bets could be placed.
In a reaction to a COVID-related decrease in gaming revenue statewide, the state legislature along with the MGCB are working towards speeding up the process to launch mobile sportsbooks earlier than anticipated. A public hearing on September 23, and an anticipated economic impact statement in October, means that mobile apps could launch as early as November 2020.
Retail sportsbook locations opened in March 2020. It was a slow start, with limited sports available for betting over the summer. Things are looking up, though, for Michigan sports bettors, as the launch of online sports betting apps is only weeks away.
Currently, the only option for Michigan sports betting is at retail sportsbooks at Michigan casinos.
- FanDuel Sportsbook at MotorCity Casino Hotel
- BetMGM Sports Lounge at MGM Grand Detroit
- Barstool Sportsbook at Greektown Casino
- Four Winds Sportsbook at Four Winds Casino
- River Rock Sportsbook at Little River Casino
- Dacey’s Sportsbook at FireKeepers Casino
- DraftKings Sportsbook at Bay Mills Resort
- Stage 131 Sportsbook & Lounge at Gunk Lake Casino
- Onyx Sports Book By William Hill at Turtle Creek
- Onyx Sports Book By William Hill at Leelanau Sands Casino
- BetAmerica at Island Casino
Timeline for Sports Betting Online in Michigan
Online sports betting in Michigan is launching shortly, here is the timeline and likely launch of Michigan sports betting apps.
- December 20, 2019: Online gaming legalized
- March 11, 2020: Retail sportsbooks launch in MI, including sports betting lounges at Detroit’s 3 casinos
- March 6-August 5, 2020: Detroit’s commercial casinos closed due to COVID-19
- September 3, 2020: BetMGM Michigan announces a sports betting partnership with the Detroit Lions
- September 23, 2020: MGCB held public hearings
- End of October 2020: Final economic impact statement expected
- November 2020: MGCB anticipates the launch of the first Michigan mobile sports betting apps
Michigan Online Sports Betting Launch Apps
The following sportsbooks are historically the first to launch their online sportsbooks and we believe to have the best chance to be approved for the Michigan sports betting online launch in November.
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- FanDuel Sportsbook
- Barstool Sportsbook
Michigan Online Sportsbooks
All of Michigan’s casinos plan on offering sports betting to their patrons. Michigan’s three commercial casinos and 23 tribal casinos promise at least 26 online sportsbooks that will roll out in Michigan over the next year or so.
As we get closer to the launch of Michigan sports betting apps, many of the Michigan land-based casinos have announced their partnerships with online sports betting operators.
Another well-known name in online casinos and sportsbooks is DraftKings. Currently operating in New Jersey, West Virginia, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Colorado, New Hampshire, and Iowa. DraftKings Sportsbook will operate in Michigan in partnership with Bay Mills Resort & Casino. The tribal casino, owned by the Bay Mills Indian Community, announced the partnership with DraftKings in June 2020.
FanDuel partnered with MotorCity Casino Hotel in Detroit to open a physical location. This will let FanDuel break into Michigan’s sports betting market during the year it’ll take for online betting to become operational. Although it’s outside of FanDuel’s usual M.O., it will be well-positioned to enter Michigan’s online sports betting market when the legislature catches up. FanDuel Casino also announced an online casino in Michigan.
BetMGM Sportsbook functions as the official sports betting brand of MGM Resorts. The BetMGM brand came together as a joint venture between MGM and GVC Holdings, known as Roar Digital. They are partnered with MGM Grand Detroit and are expected to launch soon in Michigan.
The online sports betting platform offers a selection of sports and live betting options that competes with anything else in the legal US online sports betting market. BetMGM Sportsbook will eventually be available as an app for iOS and Android devices in Michigan, as well as a web-based platform.
BetRivers is one of the top sports betting sites that fall under its parent, Rush Street Gaming. Sometimes referred to as Rivers Sportsbook, BetRivers will be offering folks in Michigan a combination of social gaming, casino games, and sports betting action. It’s a platform also available in Indiana, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Colorado.
A partnership between The Stars Group and the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians Gaming Authority. The Stars Group will bring FOX Bet online sportsbook to Michigan under the license of Odawa Casino.
This deal exclusively offers online sports betting, signaling not only a focus on online services but also potential optimism that the tribal gaming authority will approve online licenses sooner than the State of Michigan.
Developed through a partnership between Fox Sports and the Stars Group, FOX Bet is among the market’s newer sportsbooks. Offering sports betting on a range of sports including football, basketball, baseball, and hockey, FOX Bet will have its work cut out for it competing with other more established players in the market once online sports betting goes live in Michigan.
Barstool Sports joins the Michigan sports betting market thanks to its partnership with Greektown Casino. Penn National Gaming, Barstools parent company operates Greektown Casino in partnership with Vici Properties, which owns the Detroit-bases commercial casino.
The Sportsbook at Greektown Casino offers live sports betting on the Greektown Casino property. Penn National Gaming will launch Barstool’s online sportsbook under the Greektown Casino license.
FireKeepers Casino and Hotel secured a partnership with Scientific Games to offer sports betting at its Battle Creek location. Scientific Games’ wide range of games and machines make it a strong creative outlet for FireKeepers Casino to partner with. There are only physical sportsbooks in Michigan for now, but Scientific Games has a portfolio of online services, too. Once online betting comes to Michigan, FireKeepers Casino will have the capability to offer online betting options for its patrons.
Kewadin Casinos Sportsbook
Formerly GameAccount Network, GAN plc has a partnership with Michigan’s Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians. This partnership brings sports betting to not just one, but five casinos across Michigan. That puts GAN plc in the largest number of Michigan casinos. It’s a strong position to be in for a company that–like its competitors–is almost certainly preparing to expand into the online sports betting space. However, bettors will find a physical sportsbook in the five Kewadin casinos until online sports betting becomes operational.
William Hill’s partnership puts it into two different casinos. The first is Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel in Williamsburg, and the second is Leelanau Sands Casino in Suttons Bay. Since William Hill is an online sports betting giant, its online sportsbook will doubtlessly become available when Turtle Creek Casino and Leelanau Sands Casino secure the necessary licenses. And when online sports betting regulations are written and approved, of course.
Northern Waters Casino Resort secured a partnership with PointsBet to bring sportsbooks into its casino. However, this deal does not put a land-based casino inside of Northern Waters Casino Resort. Instead, PointsBet agreed to provide online sportsbook and casino services. There’s a separate deal for PointsBet to operate a retail sportsbook inside this casino. This shows how critical online sports betting is for not only PointsBet but also the casinos hoping to generate new revenue from these new ventures.
Four Winds Sportsbook
Kambi Group announced a partnership to bring sportsbooks and online sports betting to the trio of Four Winds casinos in Michigan. In July 2020, the three casinos in New Buffalo, Dowagiac, and Hartford, Michigan, launched their live, retail sportsbook operations. Four Winds New Buffalo has 18 kiosks while the properties in Hartford and Dowagiac each have six. Full online sports betting is expected later in the year.
In July 2020, BetAmerica announced a partnership with Island Resort & Casino to offer both online sports betting and casino gaming. BetAmerica already operates successful iGaming sites in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Mississippi. The partnership also includes a retail sportsbook that will be operated at the casino in Harris, Michigan.
The Hannahville Indian Community operates the Michigan casino and Churchill Downs is the parent company of BetAmerica.
The land-based version of Parx Casino functions as Pennsylvania’s highest-grossing commercial casino. The brand’s online presence, however, includes a mobile casino product available in New Jersey.
Parx Casino will add a third state to its portfolio when it launches both retail and online sports betting in Michigan. Parx will operate both retail and mobile sports betting for Gun Lake Casino, with the launch of both products TBA. They announced the partnership in March 2020.
Michigan Sports Betting Partnerships
|Commercial Casinos||Partnered Sportsbooks|
|MGM Grand - Detroit||BetMGM|
|GreekTown Casino||Penn National Gaming, Inc.|
|MotorCity Casino Hotel||FanDuel|
|Tribal Casinos||Partnered Sportsbooks|
|Bay Mills Resort & Casino, Brimley||DraftKings Sportsbook|
|FireKeepers Casino & Hotel, Battle Creek||Scientific Games|
|Four Winds Dowagiac||Kambi Group|
|Four Winds Hartford||Kambi Group|
|Four Winds New Buffalo||Kambi Group|
|Gun Lake Casino, Wayland||Parx Casino|
|Island Resort & Casino, Bark River||BetAmerica|
|Kewadin Casino Christmas||GAN plc|
|Kewadin Casino Hessel||GAN plc|
|Kewadin Casino Mantisique||GAN plc|
|Kewadin Casino, Hotel & Convention Center, Sault Saint Marie||GAN plc|
|Kewadin Shores Casino, St. Ignace||GAN plc|
|Kings Club Casino, Brimley||N/A|
|Leelanau Sands Casino, Suttons Bay||William Hill|
|Little River Casino & Resort, Manistee||BetRivers|
|Odawa Casino, Mackinaw||FOXBet|
|Odawa Casino Resort, Petoskey||FOXBet|
|Ojibwa Casino, Baraga||Golden Nugget|
|Ojibwa Casino, Marquette||Golden Nugget|
|Saganing Eagles Landing Casino, Standish||N/A|
|Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, Mt. Pleasant||N/A|
|Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel, Williamsburg||William Hill|
|Northern Waters Casino Resort, Watersmeet||PointsBet|
Michigan’s Online Betting Forecast
The future of online betting in Michigan is bright, but distant. Michigan remains almost a year away from completing the online betting regulations. With online betting at a standstill, bettors will have to rely on other states’ examples to know what they can expect from Michigan’s online sports betting scene. Here are a few things that bettors can expect from online sportsbooks when they arrive.
See our comprehensive guide to What Can You Bet On In Michigan.
Online Betting Bonuses
Online betting offers more than convenience. They also offer a wide range of bonuses to entice bettors to try their apps and websites. However, bettors must often fulfill certain terms and conditions to earn these bonuses. (Don’t count on signing up and ditching the site after collecting your “free” $50). But these bonuses can make a big difference over many bets, so they’re worth understanding.
Deposit And No-Deposit Bonuses
Deposit bonuses contribute money to bettors’ accounts. For every dollar that bettors deposit, the online sportsbook will contribute a percentage, too. DraftKings’ sign on bonus matches 20% of bettors’ deposits up to $500. That means that for every $5 a bettor deposits into their account, DraftKings will add $1 to it, ending contributions after $500.
No-deposit bets are what they sound like. Bettors don’t have to deposit anything to receive money. They just register and get a little money. Although, it’s usually a very small amount. FanDuel’s no-deposit bonus is a measly $5 within three days of a bettor signing up and verifying their account. But it’s a way to get even the most risk-averse bettor to give betting a try.
Some online sportsbooks will offer “free” bets upon signup. However, to qualify for these free bets, bettors usually have to risk their own money first. For example, PointsBet’s $200 free bet is really two separate refunds of $100 worth of bonus points. (There’s some fine print, for you.)
It goes even further to refund the $100 worth of bonus points on a lost fixed-odds bet and a separate $100 worth of bonus points on a lost PointsBetting Bet. Refunding lost money may seem pointless to some bettors, but it’s a great way for online sportsbooks to attract new bettors who may be hesitant to risk money.
Michigan’s Main Online Sportsbook Teams
The main teams that Michiganders will bet on when online betting becomes operational will be Detroit’s professional teams. The Detroit Lions is the local NFL team, so they’ll be one of the most popular teams to bet on. It will also be possible to bet on the Super Bowl in Michigan, even if the Lions don’t make the cut.
Basketball fans can enjoy the Detroit Pistons’ return to the court after the pandemic, and the Tigers’ first pitch will send bettors flocking to their online sportsbooks. Finally, hockey fans will get to see the Red Wings play locally, too. Basically, everyone except soccer fans have a local professional team to bet on from their living room.
College fans will be able to enjoy online sports betting, too. While some states limit college bets, Michigan doesn’t. Michiganders can place any bet they want on their favorite college teams. In fact, one of the goals of beginning sports betting on March 11 was to allow sportsbooks to offer lines on the men’s college NCAA tournament.
However, betting on high school athletic events remains illegal. The Lawful Sports Betting Act wants to keep minors away from the influence of prop bets and sports betting. There’s an exemption for teams that are at the high school level in which players are 18 or older. However, this sounds like a loophole designed to allow betting on amateur events, rather than a way to encourage betting on high school teams. In other words, don’t expect a loophole to let bettors wager on the state high school championship.
eSports Betting In Michigan
The future of eSports betting in Michigan is unclear. The Lawful Sports Betting Act defines a sport as:
“A sports activity that involves the athletic skill of 1 or more players or participants.”
The allowance of eSports will probably hinge on the definition of ‘athletic skill.’ It’s possible that betting lines on Call of Duty matches will be considered fair game. Anyone who’s watched a live stream of professional gamers can attest to the reflexes, dexterity, and communication required to succeed. However, Greektown’s casino does not accept eSports bets or list them as an official sport. eSports fans will have to wait to bet on professional eSports in Michigan.
Which Sportsbooks Are Coming To Michigan Next?
IGT PlaySports is conspicuously absent from the list of casino deals. It’s one of the largest gaming infrastructure companies in the world with offerings similar to The Stars Group and Scientific Games. As the other eleven casinos secure sportsbook deals, IGT PlaySports will likely find its foothold in Michigan.
How Illegal Sports Betting Is Affected By Legal Sportsbooks
Illegal sports betting used to be a $150 billion industry. Everything from the local bookie at the Waffle House (seriously) to offshore betting sites that may or may not pay their bettors created a thriving underbelly of illegal wagers. But why bet at a legal sportsbook instead of an illegal one? Reliable payouts, above all else.
If you place a bet at a legal sportsbook, then the sportsbook is obligated to pay you. Take this case from FanDuel in 2018. Its algorithm made a mistake and gave someone 750-1 odds at the end of the Broncos-Raiders game. When the bettor complained and state regulators became involved, FanDuel paid the bettor his $82,000 bet. That’s the kind of direct recourse that’s available from sportsbooks with regulating agencies.
In contrast, offshore betting sites aren’t under United States jurisdiction. The Justice Department can’t reach into someone’s living room across the world and force them to pay their bettors. If an offshore bookie is out of money or a malicious scammer, then bettors are out of luck.
Differences Between Legal And Illegal Sportsbooks
There are a few ways bettors can tell legitimate and fraudulent sportsbooks apart. One way is for bettors to google their sportsbook of choice. If bettors consistently find forums of people who’ve been stiffed by a certain sportsbook, that provides a clear answer.
Another way is to look for press releases announcing partnerships between sportsbooks and licensed casinos. Michigan’s casinos and sportsbook partners have to be licensed by the Michigan Gaming Control Board. That also means opening themselves up to the State’s Patron Dispute Information form.
Finally, look for the small requirements that online sportsbooks have to follow. The responsible gaming logo required by law on their websites is one tiny indicator of quality. Small compliance measures like these can help bettors navigate the complicated world of legal and illegal sports betting websites.
How Do Bettors Know That Michigan’s Sportsbooks Are Fair?
Skeptical bettors may think that gaming is similarly questionable everywhere. However, that is far from true. Legal online sportsbooks are regulated by the state, required to pay bettors, and have clear methods to pay their customers.
Who Will Regulate Michigan’s Online Sportsbooks?
The Michigan Gaming Control Board regulates Michigan’s three commercial casinos and will regulate online commercial sportsbooks. It’s in charge of auditing, licensing, and regulating casinos, their suppliers, and their distributors. It also has a complaint form for patrons to fill out if there’s a dispute about receiving winnings or any other grievance.
However, the tribal casinos are overseen by the National Indian Gaming Commission. It was founded by the 1988 Indian Gaming Regulatory Act for tribes to regulate gaming themselves. The National Indian Gaming Commission both monitors tribal gaming ordinances and enforces violations. When sports betting arrives at Michigan’s tribal casinos, this will be the governing body overseeing them.
Why You Should Trust Legal Online Sportsbooks
Betting online may seem unsettling, but legitimate online sportsbooks are reliable. DraftKings and FanDuel don’t just sell bets. They traffic in reliability. Remember, FanDuel paid out an $82,000 bet even though it came from on an internal error. DraftKings keeps customer funds and DraftKings operating funds separate (your money won’t be used to pay DraftKings’ hosting fees), and it allows customers to escalate complaints about account management.
Legitimate sportsbooks are also subject to state and tribal regulation. Online sportsbooks in the state of Michigan require licensing from the state, and those that partner with tribal casinos require approval from the tribe, who themselves require approval from the National Indian Gaming Commission. There are levels of protection for legal online sportsbook customers that are absent from unlicensed and unregulated online sportsbooks.
How Bettors Get Paid By Online Sportsbooks
The most common ways to get paid are by direct deposit, PayPal, or–for larger cash amounts–by check. DraftKings offers all three options. Bettors can transfer money to debit cards, credit cards, and PayPal accounts. But for amounts over $2,000, DraftKings will send a check in the mail. Other sportsbooks, like William Hill, offer withdrawals to prepaid cards or cash withdrawals from physical sportsbooks.
Wherever bettors wager, their online accounts will be the hub for payments. Legitimate sportsbooks have clear payment guidelines, concrete timelines, and government oversight that ensures customers are treated fairly–and paid. Online sports betting can be as legitimate as a land-based sportsbook. Bettors only have to watch for red flags and remain vigilant when they try new sportsbooks.
MICHIGAN ONLINE SPORTS BETTING POST-CORONAVIRUS
Legal sportsbooks offer a favorable alternative to illegal sports betting sites that don’t always pay bettors their winnings. The only challenge that Michigan hasn’t overcome is the coronavirus outbreak. Michigan’s casinos closed almost at the same time as sports betting went live and sports leagues across the country were canceled. Without online betting, Michigan’s sportsbooks will struggle to rake in revenue from masses of interested bettors. However, as long as bettors are complying with social distancing guidelines, sportsbooks could recover throughout the year and embrace their promising futures in Michigan.
Michigan Sports Betting FAQ
In-person sports betting at Michigan casinos started on March 11, 2020. Michigan online sports betting has not launched but we expect sports betting apps to be available in late 2020 (November/December).
Retail and online sports betting is taxed at 8.4% in Michigan.
You need to be 21+ to place online sports betting wagers in Michigan.
College games, professional games, and amateur games with athletes who are 18 and over are all fair game for bettors. As long as it’s not a high school team or younger, matches have sports betting potential.
No. If Greektown’s sportsbook guide is any indication, then eSports don’t seem to be offered at Michigan’s sportsbooks. Michigan’s eSports leagues appear to be mostly high school teams, so they can’t be bet on. On the other hand, FanDuel already has eSports lines open in other states, so eSports could become available when online betting goes live. In the meantime, eSports fans will have to wait.
The two types of people who can apply for an online sportsbook license are:
- Individuals who have a casino license under the Michigan Gaming Control and Revenue Act.
- Native American tribes that conduct Class III gaming in a licensed Michigan casino in compliance with the National Indian Gaming Commission.
That means aspiring independent bookies are out of luck. Michigan is only letting licensed commercial and tribal casinos operate sportsbooks. This is probably how the State of Michigan assuaged fears about the negative impact sports betting could have on college athletes. If only legitimate sportsbooks are allowed to operate, then the chances of unethical influences on college athletes are presumably lower. It also ensures that only bookies who can pay their customers can accept bets. That’s among the most important issue to bettors, after all.
Yes. DraftKings, as well as its main competitor FanDuel, announced partnerships to bring sports betting to Michigan in partnership with Michigan casinos. That means they will have a land-based sportsbook along with their sportsbook and casino apps. DraftKings partnered with Bay Mills Resort and Casino and FanDuel is partnered with MotorCity Casino. We anticipate both Michigan sports betting apps to be some of the first to debut before the end of 2020.
No. Bettors can place prop bets, moneyline bets, and all other types of legal bets in Michigan. Some states don’t allow sportsbooks to offer prop bets–or any bets–on college games out of concern for the young players. Michigan appears confident that college games and students will remain reasonably unaffected, so the Wolverines are fair game.