One lucky player in Maryland hit Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing, which stood at $731 million.
It was the fifth largest ever in the history of U.S. multi-state lottery jackpots. The Powerball jackpot was reset to $20 million after the winning drawing.
Fortunately for lottery players or just gamblers in general, there’s still a projected $970 million Mega Millions jackpot for Friday night. Folks in Michigan are able to buy tickets from the comfort of their homes via the online Michigan Lottery site. You can also visit a lottery retailer.
Friday is also the day when Michigan will begin online casino and online sports betting.
The $970 million Mega Millions pot is currently the third largest in history. It has a ways to go before reaching the No. 2 spot. The record of $1.58 billion (Powerball) was set in 2016, followed by a $1.53 billion (Mega Millions) jackpot in 2018.
Four Michiganders have won $1 million lottery prizes this month thanks to coming ever so close to the grand prize. Hitting five of the six numbers will result in a nice seven-figure prize, but if there’s ever a time to be a little disappointed with winning a million bucks it’s probably in situations just like right now — or coming up short at the World Series of Poker Main Event final table.
It might not take long for the current Mega Millions pot to reach record levels, assuming it isn’t hit in the next couple of drawings. The jackpot is starting to get mainstream media coverage, which helps fuel the growth. The jackpot could soon temporarily overshadow Michigan’s new sports betting apps.
It’s worth remembering that no matter how large the jackpot becomes, it’s very unlikely your $2 ticket will be +EV (expected value). In other words, you will always be expected to lose money on a ticket even if the jackpot reaches a record high.
Why is that? When so many tickets are bought, the chances of multiple winners becomes likely. Plus, of course, you have to pay taxes on your winnings and take a massive reduction if you go with the lump sum payout. The lump sum for Friday’s drawing is an estimated $716 million.
What are the odds of winning Mega Millions? You’re expected to win once for every 302.5 million tickets you purchase. The word astronomical is appropriate here.
Arguably the alluring thing about Mega Millions and Powerball, compared to other forms of gambling, is the ability to win a sum that is life-changing for not just yourself but also probably for everyone you’re close to. Life-changing money is, of course, a relative term, as any amount of money can be life-altering for a person depending on circumstances.