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Mega Millions: Why the Jackpot Prize Was Actually Higher Than Expected

The jackpot was the nation's third-largest lottery prize

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

The Mega Millions jackpot finally found a winner, but how much was the prize actually worth?

With every no winner called since April, the jackpot kept rolling over to the next drawing, growing larger each time.

Ahead of Friday night's drawing, the jackpot was estimated to be worth $1.28 billion with a cash value of $747.2 million.

But the final value won by the ticket purchased in the Chicago area was higher, coming in at $1.337 billion with a cash value of $780.5 million. The final value ended up being higher than the estimate based on actual sales, according to the Illinois Lottery. Ahead of Friday night's drawing, the jackpot was estimated to be worth $1.28 billion with a cash value of $747.2 million. The jackpot was the nation's third-largest lottery prize ever.

The winning ticket was purchased at the Speedway, at 885 E Touhy Ave., in Des Plaines.

The winning numbers called in Friday night's drawing were: 13-36-45-57-67, Mega Ball: 14.

“We are thrilled to have witnessed one of the biggest jackpot wins in Mega Millions history,” Ohio Lottery Director Pat McDonald, currently serving as Lead Director for the Mega Millions Consortium, said in a statement on the lottery’s website. “We’re eager to find out who won and look forward to congratulating the winner soon!”

According to the Illinois Lottery, the store that sold the ticket is a pretty big winner, too; it will receive a half million dollars just for selling the ticket.

Mega Millions is played in 45 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The game is coordinated by state lotteries.

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