The Illinois Gaming Board continues to post sports betting updates on a timeline that is much slower than other states throughout the United States. With that said, the May numbers are now in for Illinois, and once again, this state has proven to be among the best in the country.
The May sports betting total for Illinois was $764 million, which will once again land this state among the top three throughout the U.S. This was a drop of more than 9% from what was wagered in April, but a slower sports calendar was responsible for this drop.
More than 90% of all wagers placed in Illinois were done either online or through a mobile sportsbook app, even though there are retail sportsbooks littered throughout the state. The hold rate for the month was 8.5%, which is much higher than the national average.
Because sportsbooks were able to record such a high hold rate, the sportsbooks were able to generate more than $65 million in total revenue. That amounted to $10.8 million in tax revenue for the state, and this new revenue source was the major reason for legalizing this betting option in the first place.
No Stopping FanDuel
Illinois has been able to attract some of the biggest online sportsbooks in the industry, but it is FanDuel that continues to set the tone. DraftKings has provided a challenge in some months, but that wasn’t necessarily the case in May.
The total sports betting handle for FanDuel Sportsbook was $254.9 million, and that led to a total revenue of $30.57 million. Out of all of the online sportsbooks in Illinois, the hold rate of 12% at FanDuel Sportsbook was the top in the industry.
DraftKings came in second place with a total sports betting handle of $208.6 million, and it was actually the only other option with a total handle of more than $100 million. BetRivers continues to be in third place ($97.4 million), and PointsBet came in fourth with a total handle of $68.4 million.
Basketball Beats Out Baseball
May was the last big month of the year for basketball until the Fall, and it led the way in total handle for the month. There was over $191 million wagered on basketball during the month of May, and an early postseason exit for the Chicago Bulls actually hurt the total.
Baseball was close behind basketball as that sport brought in over $184 million in wagers for the month of May. Illinois bettors continue to put together parlay wagers, and that betting option accounted for $160 million in bets.
Those numbers will look drastically different in the June report as baseball is expected to bring in the most wagers.
Casinos Also Thriving
Illinois is exploring the idea of legalizing online casino gambling as well, and the popularity of this form of gaming might help with that debate. Casinos in Illinois had a big month of June as the total revenue for the month was over $110 million.
Based on the year-over-year totals, casino gambling in the state of Illinois increased by over five percent since June 2021. This growth could even be even bigger in the Summer of 2023 as a new casino is set to launch in the city of Chicago.
If online casinos are able to launch in Illinois, then that form of gaming would bring in substantially more money than the highly-successful online sports betting industry.