Mega Millions Tops $1 Billion For Friday Drawing

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Mega Millions Tops $1 Billion For Friday Drawing
© USA Today

Mega Millions mania reached such a crescendo on Tuesday, with a grand prize of $830 million, that it broke the web — sort of.

As ticket sales soared, the Mega Millions US lottery site on Tuesday had its most traffic ever, causing it to crash for more than two hours.

With no winner on Tuesday, the prize total for the next drawing on Friday has zoomed to $1.025 billion.

While it’s doubtful this will lead to a complete internet meltdown, Ohio Lottery Director Pat McDonald called the $1 billion mark “breathtaking.”

In Mega Millions’ 20-year history, the $1 billion total has only been eclipsed two other times.

By Friday, the current amount could go higher.

“We look with anticipation on the growing jackpot,” said McDonald, lead director of the Mega Millions consortium.

App Available For Lottery Tickets

Mega Millions is available where lotteries are legal. This includes 45 states, Washington, D. C., and the U. S. Virgin Islands. 

It is not available in Alabama, Utah, Nevada, Alaska and Hawaii, according to the Mega Millions website. 

In addition to lottery ticket sales at locations such as convenience stores and gas stations, tickets are available on the Jackpocket Lottery app. 

The app is available in Arkansas, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Texas and Washington, D.C.

The Jackpocket app marks another step in the use of mobile apps for legal wagering, including for sports betting and horse racing.

Jackpocket has become the official mobile lottery partner of several professional sports teams, including Major League Baseball’s Colorado Rockies, Texas Rangers and Minnesota Twins. 

In some instances, these arrangements include free branded merchandise and a free lottery ticket.

Sound Financial Advice

The eventual winner will become an instant billionaire, joining a category that, at least in sports, only includes three athletes in history — Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Tiger Woods.

Chances of drawing a winning ticket are slim, only 1 in 303 million.

But when someone does win, financial advisers suggest that person keep a low profile and, with the help of professionals, map out an investment strategy.

Steve Azoury, of Azoury Financial in Troy, Michigan, told USA Today that lottery winners should get a tax attorney, tax accountant and financial adviser “right off the bat.”

“They’ll work hand in hand to figure out a plan,” he said.

Big Bucks

Here are the top Mega Millions jackpots to date:

$1.537 billion (Oct. 23, 2018) 

$1.050 billion (Jan. 22, 2021)

$1.025 billion (?)

$656 million (March 30, 2012)

Source: Mega Millions website

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