Another Week, Another Set Of Michigan Lottery Players Hitting $ 1 Million Prizes

Written By Derek Helling on June 4, 2021

At this point, it’s getting ridiculous. By the end of this year, there may be more Michigan Lottery millionaires than in several previous years combined. The latest two a Saginaw man who finally hit the big money after years of faithfully playing his favorite game.

Despite the historic rate of such wins this year, it’s important to note that the odds of winning such a prize remain quite long. It also might be quite some time before we see another year like this one in MI.

The Michigan Lottery millionaires club grows again

According to a Thursday news release from the MI Lottery, a 43-year-old man from Saginaw bought a Cashword Millions scratch-off ticket at the Kroger on State St. The rest of the story is best told by the anonymous winner himself.

“I play the Cashword games regularly and purchased some while I was at the store,” the player said. “I was grilling out that night and decided to scratch my tickets. When I realized I’d won $1 million, I was so shaken up and excited, I couldn’t even finish cooking my dinner.”

The winner visited a MI Lottery claim center to receive his prize. He opted for a lump sum payment that came out to $634,000 after taxes. It looks like the player is going to do the smart thing and invest his windfall, too.

“This prize provides a financial cushion for me and my kids. I’ve never had this kind of money, so it is going to change our lives,” said the player.

The MI Lottery says that since its introduction in August of 2019, Cashword Millions has paid out over $90 million to players. Regardless, more than $7 million in prizes is still up for grabs. That includes seven prizes of $5,000. Each Cashword Millions game card costs $20, and prizes start at the cost of the ticket.

Although there are no more $1 million prizes for this game left, that shouldn’t lead to a slowdown in MI Lottery players winning seven-figure prizes. The year 2021 continues to be an unprecedented time for such wins.

All millions, no gas for Genesee County man

Case in point is a Friday announcement from the lottery regarding a 59-year-old’s big Winning Millions cash-in in Genesee County.

The man, who also chose to maintain anonymity, bought his ticket at a Speedway gas station in Fenton. From there, a sort of positive hysteria took over.

“Winning Millions has been my favorite Lottery game since it came out,” player said. “I stopped at Speedway to get gas and decided to get a ticket while I was there. I started scratching the ticket while my gas was pumping. When I saw I’d matched the number 14 and then revealed the $1 million amount underneath, I started yelling: ‘Are you kidding me?!’

“I was so excited, I forgot I was filling up with gas and drove away with the gas pump still in my car.”

As in the previous instance, the lump sum was chosen, and the highest jackpot prize in the game is now gone.

The wins just keep coming

The lottery’s database shows five more seven-figure wins since May 17. The total number for this year has now surpassed 30, nearly equaling all of 2020’s total (35) with about half of the year to go. What’s behind the uptick?

It certainly isn’t the MI Lottery and/or Multistate Lottery Corporation shortening the odds. In fact, the odds are unchanged, as far as this year goes. It’s even more remarkable given the reductions in initial jackpots and roll increases for multistate draw games such as Mega Millions and Powerball.

This year will likely conclude as a historic one for MI Lottery players. That will probably not only apply in terms of seven-figure prizes, but ticket sales as well.

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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Chicago, IL. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law. Recently, he has written about the expanded gambling industry in Michigan, including online sports betting, online casinos, and the cornerstone land-based casino market.

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