Online Sports Betting Handle in Michigan Falls to Lowest Since August 2022



  • Michigan sports betting handle dropped by more than 14% from the previous year and almost 10% from April 2023.
  • Online casinos accounted for 94% of the total betting handle in the state, while also contributing to $35.2 million of the revenue.
  • Betting hold was up 11.8%, slightly more than the 10.7% recorded in April this year.

May is known to be one of the worst months for sportsbooks in the Michigan gambling industry, and this year was no different. Sports betting handle continued to decline in May 2023, with online wagering handle dropping to below $300 million for the first time since August 2022.

Unfortunately, the outlook for the first five months of the year have also not been positive as sports betting handle over the period as it declined by 10.3% relative to 2022. Individual sportsbooks have also struggled with betting hold and revenue in the month of May. All the details are available below.

Sports Betting Handle Falls by 14.2% to $305 Million

The total sports betting handle recorded in Michigan was $305.3 million, a 9.7% drop from April 2023. Online sportsbooks contributed $288.3 million to the overall wagering handle but could do little to stop the general year-over-year decline of 14.2%. May 2022 saw Michigan sports betting sites pool a massive $333.4 million worth of online betting handle. So, this year’s comparative figure came pretty disappointing, especially as it dropped below the $300 million mark.

Last year, Michigan online sportsbooks failed to cross $300 million in sports betting handle only thrice and that was the consecutive monthly period from June to August. Back in August 2022, online sportsbooks generated only $218.8 million in betting handle, making that the last time the industry saw a handle lower than the $300 million mark.

Specifically, online betting handle is down year-over-year by 13.5% but definitely better than the $237.6 million recorded in May 2021 when the industry was still at infancy. The first five months of the year have now brought in an online wagering handle of $1.84 billion. However, this falls short of last year by over 10% when online sportsbooks generated $2.05 billion.

FanDuel Maintains Top Spot for Handle and Revenue

The total sports betting handle for the first five months of the year has been lower than those of last year by 12.5%, proving most stakeholder projections to be true. However, FanDuel Sportsbook MI has managed to remain level-headed over the months. The MotorCity-owned operator generated a total wagering handle of $104.9 million while recording a monthly revenue of $18 million in May.

DraftKings and BetMGM have been in close competition for second place, with the latter edging out others by the end of May. While BetMGM Sportsbook Michigan could only manage a wagering handle of $50.4 million, DraftKings pooled $28 million more to clinch a total handle of $78.8 million in the outgone month. This became the 12th consecutive month that DraftKings had secured the second position despite fierce rivalry.

Interestingly, since February 2023, DraftKings has recorded a sports betting handle worth at least 25% more than MGM Grand Detroit sportsbooks. DraftKings also won on revenue comparison, clinching profits of $7.8 million while BetMGM settled in third position with a revenue of $6.7 million.

Revenue from Sportsbooks Hit $36.1 Million as Betting Hold Increases

The total revenue from Michigan sportsbooks came to about $36.1 million, with 97.5% of that figure coming from online sports betting operators. Compared to April 2023’s aggregate revenue of $36.3 million, May’s revenue could be deemed quite impressive, especially considering its lower betting handle record.

Wagering hold was 11.8% this month, coming up from 10.7% posted last month. This marked the third consecutive month that sportsbooks in the Great Lakes State have recorded a hold of over 10%. In particular, May’s collection was the highest in the state since September 2022. Eagle Casino & Sports also recorded its largest hold since the same period as it collected 14.8% of its total wagers.

On the flip side, FireKeepers Sportsbook Michigan saw a negative hold of -2.5%, thereby losing $23,219 to bettors. Caesars also barely broke even, posting a hold of 0.4% in the outgone month. Fortunately for six other sports betting operators, they recorded a hold of over 10%, with FanDuel collecting 17.2% of its total wagers.

At the end of it all, Michigan sportsbooks paid a total of $2.1 million in taxes. $1.5 million went to the state of Michigan while over $600K went to local authorities.

Jessica is a news contributor to Gamble Online Michigan. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics but has over three years of experience working in the hospitality and gambling industry. Despite her core finance and investment banking background, she has been a casino feature writer for N1 Interactive Limited and multiple gambling affiliate sites. Her work has been featured on the bet365 blog, and Max Force Racing. She spends her time between Michigan and California, staying up-to-date on the latest industry developments