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Illinois Now Second Largest Sports Betting Market

The Illinois Gaming Board has announced sports betting numbers from the month of April, and one thing is now clear. Illinois has become the second-largest sports betting market in the United States, with only New York ahead of it.

There was once a time in which New Jersey was clearly holding on to the top spot, and that state moved into the number two position once New York took over. Since the start of 2023, Illinois has just continued to put up huge numbers, blowing past New Jersey during this stretch.

The total sports betting handle for the month was just shy of $900 million, trailing only New York for the month of April. Not only that, but the gross sports betting revenue was $89.5 million as sportsbooks were able to cash in on parlay bets made from bettors.

Parlay bets made up nearly 28% of the total handle in the state of Illinois, and that’s always a bet that goes well for sportsbooks. All of the sportsbooks in the state were able to post impressive revenue numbers from parlays, but it was FanDuel that led the way.

Total handle was down compared to what was wagered in March, but that was to be expected. There were only three NCAA basketball games in the month, and no Chicago teams were in the NBA or NHL postseason.

Illinois continues to be a state with just seven online sports betting options, but that number is going to increase at some point in 2023. Both online and retail wagering are legal in Illinois, but it is the mobile sportsbooks that tend to bring in nearly all of the action and revenue.

Illinois Growing; Others Struggling

What makes these numbers from Illinois even more impressive is the fact that sports betting action appears to be slowing down throughout the country. Several states are trying to figure out why the total handle is trending down, but Illinois sportsbooks just continue to attract bettors.

Through the month of April, the only two states in the top-10 in sports betting handle that have seen year-over-year growth are Illinois and New York. Illinois is second in handle and revenue through the first four months, while trailing both New York and Pennsylvania in tax revenue.

The total sports betting handle through April in 2022 was $3.3 billion, and that number is now set at $3.9 billion.

FanDuel Dominating Bettors

While every Illinois sportsbook performed well during the month of April, it was FanDuel Sportsbook that put up ridiculous numbers. FanDuel accounted for $49.8 million of the total revenue for the month, and that sportsbook posted a hold rate of more than 20%.

DraftKings is the only other sportsbook that is even close to FanDuel in terms of handle and revenue, and there is still a pretty large gap. Circa Sportsbook is looking to launch before the 2023 NFL season, and that could take away some business from the two leaders in the state.

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