Mega Millions: 30% chance no one hits jackpot, lottery official says

James Kim, owner of Hawthorne's Bluebird Liquor, says he hopes he sells the winning ticket for the upcoming Mega Millions drawing, worth $636 million or more

He may get his wish: His store has developed a reputation as "lucky" after producing multiple lottery jackpot winners of more than $1 million.

“The line is very, very long.” Kim said Tuesday. “It’s getting crazy now.”

Lottery players have been rubbing the bluebird statue inside the store all day for good luck, he said. 

“So many times we’re missing one number,” he said. “Just one number.”

Despite a jump in ticket sales in the run-up to the drawing later in the day, there’s still about a 30% chance no one wins the big prize, a California Lottery spokesman said.

Only about 70% of the possible number combinations had been covered as of Tuesday afternoon, according to spokesman Alex Traverso. That leaves a significant chance that the jackpot will roll over. If that’s the case, Traverso said officials would set the new jackpot for Friday’s draw at about $950 million.

“Friday will likely be over $1 billion,” he said.

Tuesday’s jackpot will likely fall just short of the record $656-million haul set in March 2012. The night that jackpot was won, Traverso said about 97% of the possible number combinations were covered. 

He said officials face a new problem if the jackpot does roll over Tuesday.

Many of the signs advertising jackpots that hang in the windows of vendors have the word “million” printed on them.

“We’re trying to figure out what to do,” he said.


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Twitter: @MattStevensLAT

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