NCAA Tournament Helps Push March Maryland Sports Betting Handle Back Over $30 Million

Posted on April 11, 2022

Maryland saw its sports betting handle rise above $30 million in March after a dip to $25.5 million in February.

The tick upward to $31 million reported by state regulators could be attributed to March Madness, but the mark still couldn’t top the state’s $32.5 million worth of wagers in January. The news comes less than a week after Maryland casinos reported $170.6 million in gaming revenue for March.

March was the third full month of sports betting in Maryland. The market launched in the middle of last December. Marylanders bet $16.5 million during the limited December timeframe.

Online sports betting is currently illegal in Maryland. Regulators hope online sportsbooks in Maryland can launch and begin taking wagers by the start of the 2022-23 NFL season.

March Maryland sports betting breakdown

CasinoHandleRevenueHold %
Live! Casino$13,594,142$1,722,678
12.9 %
MGM National Harbor$9,315,077$1,174,24612.9 %
Horseshoe Baltimore$4,714,436
$570,129
12.3 %
Hollywood Casino Perryville$2,145,307$208,1429.9 %
Ocean Downs Casino$1,256,928$171,59413.9 %
Totals$31,025,891$3,846,79112.7 %

After a sharp decline to just 3.7% in February, the collective holding percentage among state sportsbooks improved nearly 10 percentage points to 12.7% in March. That number was 13.4% in January.

Ocean Downs Casino led the way by posting a hold percentage of 13.9%, while MGM National Harbor and Live! Casino were both just behind at 12.9%. Horseshoe Baltimore registered 12.3% while Hollywood Casino Perryville posted the lowest holding percentage at 9.9%.

After losing money in February, MGM National Harbor’s BetMGM sportsbook racked up $1,174,246 in taxable winnings. Live! Casino, with a state-leading $13,594,142 in handle, posted the highest revenue mark at $1,722,678 at their FanDuel-branded sportsbook.

Even with the Super Bowl, February was the lowest-recorded full month in Maryland’s short retail sports betting history. So, it wasn’t surprising to see the handle at the state’s casinos increase across the board.

  • MGM National Harbor: +24.1%
  • Live! Casino: +22.4%
  • Horseshoe Casino: +20.7%
  • Ocean Downs Casino: +12.4%
  • Hollywood Casino Perryville: +13.4%

Again, much of that is likely thanks to March Madness. The sheer number of games alone provides a wider selection of avenues for both expert and casual bettors to place wagers, which is why March typically is a leading month in most states where sports betting is legal.

With a 15% tax on gross revenue, the sportsbooks paid $577,018 to the state government.

The Maryland sports betting market has been in business for roughly 14 weeks. During that timeframe, the total handle is $105.6 million and the average hold percentage is 11.8%.

The five properties have combined to win nearly  $12.2 millionLive! Casino has the largest handle and revenue.

A sixth sportsbook is expected to enter the market soon. A bingo hall has been recently approved by the Sports Wagering Application Review Commission for a sports betting license.

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Griffin Adams

Griffin Adams is the managing editor for PlayMaryland, where he oversees news coverage on the site. His previous work has appeared in publications such as The Athletic, USA Today, Sports Illustrated and MLB.com, among others. Outside of work, Adams can be found on the golf course, playing pick-up basketball or trusting the process as a loyal Philadelphia 76ers fan.

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