PointsBet is an online sportsbook that offers two very distinct forms of wagering on one platform: traditional sports betting and PointsBetting.
On the traditional side, PointsBet takes wagers on all the major sports in the US and from around the world. Exceptional market depth and competitive odds make PointsBet Michigan a viable choice in that regard alone.
On the other side of things, however, is where PointsBet Michigan stands unique among sportsbooks. The PointsBetting markets offered by PointsBet offer a form of betting in which wins and losses are amplified by the accuracy of bettors’ predictions. We will explain this in greater detail shortly.
PointsBet is active in a handful of states today and has confirmed it will be launching in Michigan once it receives the final approval of state regulators, likely in Fall 2020 or early 2021.
In Michigan, PointsBet is partnered with the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians who operate the Northern Waters Casino Resort in Watersmeet. The 20-year agreement will have PointsBet construct a retail sportsbook at the casino and partner with the tribe for statewide mobile betting and online gambling.
PointsBet also has a large agreement in place with NBC Universal to serve as the exclusive sports betting partner and odds provider of NBC Sports. In return, NBC Universal now controls a 4.9% stake in PointsBet and will market PointsBet across all of its digital and broadcast properties, including regional sports networks.
PointsBet Michigan Bonus Code
- Welcome offer: Up to $1,000 in Risk Free Bets
- Promo code: BUSA
The PointsBet Michigan bonus offers customers two risk-free bets worth $500 each for up to $1,000 in bonus money in total.
First, new customers who place their first fixed-odds wager will be refunded with up to $500 if it loses. Second, customers who place their first PointsBetting wager will be refunded with up to $500 if that one loses.
Note that refunds are issued as bonus bets and not as cash. This somewhat contradicts the “risk free” description as bonus bets cannot be withdrawn, but any money won with bonus bets is eligible for withdrawal.
The other important thing to note is that the PointsBetting refund offer only applies if the customer places a wager without a stop-loss function. If the new player places their first PointsBetting wager with a stop loss enabled, it will not be eligible for the risk-free offer.
Bonus bets must be used within seven days of their receipt.
Other PointsBet Promotions
PointsBet is the most promotion-centric sportsbook on the market today with a large array of offers available each day. The exact list of offers changes regularly but often includes promotions similar to the following:
- Bet on the winner of a golf tournament and get your money back if your player finishes in the top 10
- Enhanced odds offers
- No juice NBA spreads all regular season
- Moneyback “insurance” offers that issue free bets to customer whose wagers come close but still lose
- $10 for every homerun/touchdown/goal scored by your team during certain promotional periods
- Early payouts if your team gets ahead by X points
- Enhanced parlay payouts / parlay insurance
This is just a random sampling of offers seen at PointsBet recently, but the main takeaway is that it is not uncommon to log in and find well over a dozen promotions running at any one time.
PointsBet is also known for its Good Karma payouts in which company reps occasionally decide to refund wagers to all customers in the case of an obviously blown call or extreme misfortune. As an example, PointsBet refunded all Yankees AL and World Series futures in January 2020 due to the Astros sign stealing scandal.
How PointsBet Works
To reiterate, PointsBet offers standard sports betting as well and we will cover that later in this review. But first we begin with a primer on the PointsBetting style of wagers that are not seen anywhere else.
The goal of a PointsBetting wager is largely the same as the goal of a standard wager: to predict the correct outcome or point total.
The difference is that wins and losses in PointsBetting wagers are determined by how right or how wrong the prediction ends up being.
The easiest way to explain is via example.
Totals Betting Example
Imagine an NBA game with the total set at 215 points.
A standard totals wager would have the customer choose an amount of money to wager and then pick the over or under. The outcome of this wager is either win or lose, and the total amount to be won or lost is known up front.
A PointsBetting wager on that same market would work a bit differently. Rather than betting an amount of money on the wager as a whole, the customer would pick an amount to wager per point.
For example, the bettor might select the over and choose to wager $1 per point. In that case, the bettor stands to win $1 per point by which the actual total exceeds 215 or to lose $1 per point by which the actual total comes up short of 215.
If the actual total in this example comes in at 225 points, the bettor in question would win $10. That’s $1 per point times 10 points over the projected total.
Likewise, the bettor would book a $10 loss if the actual total came in at 205. That’s $1 per point times 10 points under the projected total.
Point Spread Example
PointsBetting wagers can be constructed for many different markets, including point spread bets.
In this example, imagine an NBA game between the Clippers and Lakers with the spread set at Lakers -5, Clippers +5.
The bettor in this example would pick the team to win and an amount to wager per point. Let’s say the bettor picks the Lakers and bets $10 per point.
If the Lakers go on to win the game by 10 points, the bettor would win $50. That’s because the Lakers covered the line by five points at $10 per point.
If the Lakers instead lose the game by 2 points, the bettor would lose $70. That’s because the Lakers failed to cover the line by seven points at $10 per point.
Note: The above examples have been simplified a bit to keep the explanation simple. In practice, PointsBetting wagers are structured slightly differently than standard totals and spreads.
While a standard point total would set the total at 215, a PointsBetting total would instead provide different totals for the over and under. For example, the under on the first example from above might be set at 215 and the over set at 218. Bettors would then select either under 215 points or over 218 points.
The same also applies to spreads. In the second example from above, the Lakers might be priced at -5 and the Clippers at +3.
How to Limit Risk with PointsBetting Wagers
The PointsBetting style of wagering enhances potential winnings at the cost of increased risk. For every $1 wager that nets someone a $20 win, there’s another $1 wager out there that just cost someone $20 in losses.
The PointsBetting tagline that “the more you’re right, the more you win” omits the other side of the coin: the more you’re wrong, the more you lose.
However, risk is not unlimited at PointsBet. Every market comes with maximum win and loss levels that are displayed in the betting slip and adjusted according to the size of the wager. Bettors can input their intended bet size ahead of time to view exactly how much they stand to win in the best-case scenario and how much they stand to lose in the worst-case outcome.
Bettors may also set custom loss limits prior to placing PointsBetting wagers. Lowering the maximum loss permitted also lowers the maximum amount that can be won, but that is the tradeoff one makes for instituting a stricter loss limit.
PointsBet Michigan Sportsbook Review
Although best known for its PointsBetting markets, PointsBet also operates a full-featured traditional sportsbook. In fact, PointsBet claims to offer more bet types on the NFL and NBA “than any other bookmaker in the world.”
Mobile App Download and Interface
- Standalone mobile apps: iOS and Android
- Mobile-friendly website: Yes
PointsBet provides mobile apps for iOS and Android in addition to a responsible website for mobile/desktop users.
The mobile app is best described as sleek. It forgoes intricate styling and graphics in favor of simplicity with a black background and plain white text to display the odds. The simple styling is nice from a usability perspective, but bettors should know ahead of time that PointsBet is short on features as well.
While some of Michigan’s other major sportsbook operators provide an array of statistics and live data feeds to assist with handicapping, PointsBet does not offer much beyond basic scoring updates and maybe the time left in a game.
PointsBet accepts wagers on all major sports plus a handful of niche sports. Much of the coverage is geared toward US sports, but PointsBet does cover foreign leagues and major international sports.
- Australian Rules
- Beach Volleyball
- Bull Riding
- Mixed Martial Arts
- Motor Sports
- Novelty (dependent on MGCB approval)
- Rugby League
- Rugby Union
- Table Tennis
PointsBet ranks well in terms of market depth. Putting aside the unique PointsBetting wagers for a moment, PointsBet provides a large number of wagers for each event it covers. As a comparison point, PointsBet was recently offering 120+ wagers for MLB games while other sportsbooks were lucky to cobble together half that many.
The types of wagers offered includes a mix of the usual spreads, totals and moneylines plus player props, team props and game props and parlays.
PointsBetting markets are similarly varied. Customers can bet on the point spread and total as described in the examples provided earlier, but that’s not all. PointsBet also provides PointsBetting markets for other events such as over/under on the number of seconds until the next scoring play, time it will take a player to exceed X points and on individual player stats.
The PointsBet in-play betting experience is strong in some ways and weak in others.
Strong points include a busy in-play betting calendar and above average market depth during in-play events. Weak points include a subpar interface, lack of detailed real-time data and no “instant” in-play bets.
For example, while this review was being written, PointsBet and DraftKings were both covering the same MLB games with in-play betting markets.
Both sportsbooks provided a similar number of betting markets, but DraftKings had the advantage of “Flash Bet” markets covering the outcome of every pitch and at-bat while PointsBet was limited more to full-game or full-inning markets.
Additionally, the DraftKings interface provided far more information. While DraftKings displayed the speed and location of every pitch plus stats for each batter and pitcher, PointsBet only displayed the current count and occupied bases.
PointsBet Michigan Casino
PointsBet does not yet offer online gambling in any state, but that is set to change. When PointsBet announced its partnership with the Northern Waters Casino Resort in January 2020, the company stated it would offer “mobile sports wagering and online gaming (casino)” in partnership with the operating tribe.
At this early stage, all that’s known is PointsBet has plans in place to offer online casino games in the future. We will update this review as more becomes known.
Security and Responsible Gambling
PointsBet provides a number of responsible gambling tools that customers may leverage to help keep their spending under control:
- Daily, weekly and monthly deposit limits
- Daily, weekly and monthly betting limits
- Maximum bet size limits
- Daily limits on the number of hours spent logged in
- Temporary cooling off periods
- Self-exclusion for 1 year, 5 years or permanently
Customer support is not a strong point for PointsBet as support reps may only be reached via e-mail and live chat. The PointsBet website does offer an FAQ page, but it only covers a handful of basic questions and is short on details.
PointsBet is a little short on deposit options but does accept the most convenient methods:
- Online bank transfer