October Brings Exciting Online Gambling & Sports Betting News To Michigan

Written By Nicholaus Garcia on October 7, 2020 - Last Updated on February 23, 2021

In Michigan, football usually dominates the airwaves in October. But the Detroit Lions are off to a slow start, and the University of Michigan and Michigan State have yet to take the field. Instead, it’s Michigan sports betting and other gambling-related topics that are the source of excitement.

Interstate poker, a key gambling partnership and more sportsbook openings have been announced — and the month is just getting started.

The Wolverine State is rife with gambling updates, so here are three of the top stories we are following.

Michigan approves interstate poker bill

Those clamoring for Michigan online poker apps received some exciting news this week. The State Senate approved SB 0991, a bill enabling interstate poker in Michigan, by a 36-1 vote. If the bill is approved by the House and signed into law, it will be a significant achievement for the poker industry.

Interstate gambling would allow players from Michigan to compete against other players in US states with similar laws. Currently, Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey are members of the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA). This agreement allows players from all three states to compete in poker tournaments against one another.

Pennsylvania has the potential to join the MSIGA, having passed an online poker bill.

Should a bill of this magnitude get over the finish line, there is a chance that Michigan also could look to join the MSIGA and reap the rewards of online poker.

GAN and Wynn form lucrative partnership

Our second story involves a 10-year agreement between GAN, the iGaming platform provider, and casino powerhouse Wynn Resorts. GAN will provide its software platform for Wynn’s sports betting and iGaming operations in Michigan. The deal comes with an added bonus. It will be part of a market access agreement between the two companies and the Sault Saint Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. The tribe operates five casinos in the Upper Peninsula.

Shares of GAN ($GAN) jumped after the announcement. As of this writing, the stock is trading at $17.55.

The deal is significant, as Michigan is on the cusp of legalizing online sports betting, online poker and online casino games. Lawmakers anticipate going live as early as Thanksgiving.

According to experts, Michigan could potentially generate $377 million in gross online sports betting/iGaming revenue in its first 12 months. That total is expected to climb to $836 million by year four.

The market for Michigan is expected to be extremely competitive. It will be a state to keep tabs on heading into 2021.

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Another Michigan sportsbook opening brings total to 12

The list of retail sportsbooks continues to grow. The latest, Stage 131 Sportsbook and Lounge, opened this week at Gun Lake Casino in Wayland. It is powered by Parx Casino.

“Our dedication to provide an exceptional sports betting experience stems from our continued reputation of top-quality entertainment,” Jose Flores, vice president and general manager of Gun Lake Casino, told MLive. “We have worked diligently to create a comfortable and exciting atmosphere within Stage 131 Sportsbook and Lounge for all guests interested in sports betting.”

There are now about a dozen sportsbooks spread across the state, nine of which are tribal-owned and -operated. However, that will change again soon, as Barstool Sportsbook is coming to Greektown Casino.

Michigan sports betting is only expected to intensify. So if you are a fan of traditional retail sportsbooks, sit tight, more are coming.

Photo by Damian Olivera Bergallo / Dreamstime
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Nicholaus Garcia

Nick has had stints in Chicago and Washington, D.C., writing about politics, financial markets, and sports betting. He graduated from Texas Tech University and completed his master's degree in journalism at Columbia College Chicago.

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