Michigan Online Poker

Michigan poker players can finally rejoice. On January 29th, 2021 Michigan joined New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Nevada in hosting online, real money poker. With two Michigan online poker apps available now to players, it’s the perfect time to play poker in Michigan.

BetMGM Poker launched its app in partnership with its MGM Grand Casino in Detroit. The poker site is part of a suite of online gambling options, including the BetMGM Casino and BetMGM Sportsbook.

The Stars Group teamed up with the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians to open its (virtual) doors for Michigan poker players under the PokerStars brand. 

It’s possible that other poker sites could join the list of legal online poker available in Michigan.

BetMGM Michigan

BetMGM Poker was the second poker site to launch in Michigan, on March 22, 2021. Although the BetMGM Poker brand is not well known to poker players, the platform is from partypoker, which is familiar to players. When Michigan rolls out interstate poker pools, BetMGM players should be able to play against players from the partypoker US network.

PokerStars Michigan

  • Bonus offer: First deposit match up to $600
  • The site is not currently part of an interstate playing pool, though may soon be
  • PokerStars is also available in New Jersey and Pennsylvania 
  • Local Casino Partner: The Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians

PokerStars has been the biggest name in online poker since Chris Moneymaker won the 2003 WSOP. Now Michigan residents have the chance to play on the iconic site. PokerStars offers a medley of tournaments and cash games. 

Tournaments 

MTTs (multi-table tournaments) are the most common tournament type in all of poker. These tournaments typically start with a large player pool, undergo several table changes, and see increasing blind sizes. At PokerStars, these tournaments run often and in price ranges amenable to almost all bankroll ranges. PokerStars offers MTTs in Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and other poker variants. 

For players with less time on their hands, Sit N Go tournaments (SNGs) are a great option. SNGs are single-table tournaments, so they are often much quicker than MTTs. PokerStars offers SNGs for Hold’em and Pot-Limit Omaha (PLO). 

Lastly, PokerStars offers Spin & Gos, a hyper-fast, three-handed tournament. Sit down at one of these for a chance to make some quick money. 

Cash Games

What would any poker room be without cash games? Not a poker room at all. At PokerStars Michigan, cash games are offered at all times, with games from micro blinds ($.01/$.02) up to big money blinds. The site offers many different cash game variations, though Hold’em and PLO are the most populated, so you should not have trouble finding one of these games whenever you play. 

Bonus Offers

At this point, both Michigan poker apps are offering similar bonus offers for new players. Both BetMGM Poker and PokerStars are offering a 100% deposit match bonus offer up to $600. In addition, BetMGM Poker offers $25 free for registering.

For example, at PokerStars, the $600 bonus can be unlocked, but it requires a total of $600 or more across your first three deposits.

After making any combination of your first three deposits, PokerStars releases bonus funds based on how much you play. The bonus is released by earning redemption points, which are based on how much rake you pay into the platform while you play.

The redemption points amount to $0.35 in bonus funds for every $1 in rake paid in cash games or tournaments. After making your first deposit, you have four months to try to generate redemption points and unlock the bonus funds.

Cashing In And Cashing Out 

It’s easy to make a deposit with a poker site in Michigan. From your computer or mobile device log into your account and decide on a payment method. Most apps accept payment from credit card, PayPal, bank transfer, and more. The sites also allow you to set your own weekly deposit limits, for good measure. Note that both BetMGM and PokerStars require a $10 minimum deposit.  

To withdraw your winnings is just as easy. Just click the “cashier” button in the app. You will then be advised to enter your withdrawal amount. The amount you withdraw equal to your deposit will be credited back to your payment method. Any money withdrew in excess of your deposit amount (profit) will be sent for processing within 72 hours. 

What Are the Smallest Stakes

The smallest stakes cash games at PokerStars Michigan are $.01/$.02 games. This means that every time the blinds go around, you will have to wager $.01 as small blind and $.02 as the big blind. For players looking for small stakes, this is as cheap as it can get. 

At most in-person casinos, the smallest game will be $1/$2. So, playing online can find you a game 100 times cheaper! Keep in mind that online games go about twice as fast as in-person games (meaning you will have to pay those blinds more frequently). 

It’s also important to note that variance in online poker is said to be 10 times that of in-person poker. This means you will be likely to see more ups and downs in your gameplay. To combat this extra variance, it’s advised to play smaller games online than you would in an in-person casino. 

Interstate Playing Pool

Currently, online poker players in Michigan are limited to in-state competition only. Originally, interstate play was prohibited when online gaming first became legal in Michigan back in December 2019. 

A few months later, the SB 991 bill was brought to the Senate floor. The bill attempted to change the ban on interstate play by putting the decision in the hands of the State Regulators. 

The move was inspired by the knowledge that interstate poker pooling would likely increase total wagering and the number of players. This, of course, would “increase revenues to the (state) fund by a small amount,” according to the Michigan State Senate. 

The bill was first approved by the Senate and then passed by the House on December 17, 2020. This means that Michigan can now legally set up a deal to pool players with other States. 

While this is definitely good news, it still may be some time before the MGCB strikes a deal with other legalized-poker states to offer multijurisdictional poker in Michigan. One option for Michigan would be to sign The Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement

This agreement allows certain poker sites to pool players from different legal states. That way, players can face off against competition outside of their home State. 

Currently, only New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada have signed the agreement. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, however, seems likely to sign the agreement or something similar. 

Other Poker Sites On The Way

While BetMGM and PokerStars are the only poker sites officially approved and launched, there are high hopes that the World Series of Poker (WSOP) online platform will be approved soon. Part of the allure of the WSOP brand is that it is currently the only platform with multijurisdictional approval. 

Online Poker FAQs

How old do you have to be to play at online poker sites in Michigan? 

21. Like all other casinos, online or in person, you must be 21 years of age or older to play. 

Does DraftKings run an online poker site in Michigan? 

No. For now, PokerStars Michigan and BetMGM poker are the only platforms available to play legal online poker. DraftKings doesn’t generally offer online poker but does have a variety of video poker games available in Michigan. 

Can I play WSOP in Michigan? 

No, not yet at least. However, the World Series of Poker platform is expected to be one of the first sites up and running in Michigan.

Can I trust online poker apps in Michigan? 

Yes. BetMGM Poker and PokerStars are regulated by the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB), which will also be in charge of regulating any future online poker sites. If you ever feel you were not treated properly, you can file a complaint on the MGCB website. 

How do I deposit at legal online poker sites in Michigan? 

To deposit at a legal online poker site in Michigan is very easy. You need to sign up for an account and decide on a payment method. Sites will tend to accept many forms of payment, like PayPal, credit card, or bank transfer. 

When is the best time to play poker online in Michigan?

As a rule of thumb, you want to play when you think the most people will be signed in. That probably is not going to be 3:00 AM on a Tuesday. Rather, weekends and weekday afternoons are probably the best time to play.

About the Author

Chris Blundo

Chris Blundo is a freelance writer based out of Vero Beach, Florida. He holds a BA in economics and writes about Game Theory, poker, and all things gambling and sports betting.