Posts Tagged ‘Schedule’

WPT Expands Season XVI Schedule, Adds May Tournament at the Bellagio

 WPT Expands Season XVI Schedule, Adds May Tournament at the Bellagio

Not content with the outstanding season that they have put forth to this point, the powers at the World Poker Tour have decided to expand the schedule once again this year. It is but another event on the calendar, but it is what used to be their traditional Las Vegas home and where some of the biggest moments in WPT history have occurred.

The WPT announced today the creation of the WPT Bellagio Elite Poker Championship, a $ 10,000 buy-in tournament that will be played out from May 1-6 in Sin City. This big money tournament will be joined by the $ 25,000 WPT High Roller tournament, which will take place from May 4-6 on the same grounds. These two events will be a powerful one-two punch as the WPT invades Vegas for a month of tournaments in the city.

The High Roller will feature another first-time event – the first time a WPT event will start in one location and finish in another. The High Roller’s opening action will be contested at the Bellagio, but the final table will be moved to a brand-new location. The final day of the tournament will take place on Sunday, May 27, at the Esports Arena Las Vegas at the Luxor Hotel and Casino, a special Esports battleground built by Allied Esports.

Adam Pliska, the Chief Executive Officer of the World Poker Tour, said during the announcement of the new events, “Home to the first-ever World Poker Tour event, the iconic Bellagio holds a truly special place in WPT history. We are proud to return to where it all began as we start a new chapter for the tour and look forward to showcasing the game’s best at both Bellagio and Allied Esports’ new Esports Arena Las Vegas in May.”

Craig Lumpp, the director of poker operations at the Bellagio, echoed those statements. “Building off the recent record-setting success of our WPT Five Diamond, we are thrilled to welcome back the World Poker Tour to Bellagio for the WPT Bellagio Elite Poker Championship,” Lumpp commented. “Complete with a $ 25,000 High Roller event and several other premier tournaments, we look forward to hosting the top poker players in the world at Bellagio in April and May.”

The Bellagio used to be the site for the season finale for the WPT. For years the tour would close their season with the WPT World Championship. That event for years was a $ 25,000 “big bang” that made the history books in 2007 when Carlos Mortensen took home the largest ever WPT prize of nearly $ 4 million ($ 3,970,415, to be exact). By 2011 (Season 11), however, the numbers had fallen off for the WPT World Championship (to 146 players) and it was moved to the Borgata in Atlantic City and the buy in reduced.

With the addition of these two new events – which will both be broadcast during the upcoming season of the WPT on Fox Sports 1 that begins on April 29 – the total events on the Season XVI schedule now totals 19 tournaments. Not in that count is the WPT Tournament of Champions that will conclude the season following the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas on May 20. The additional events at the Bellagio will bring the Season XVI total events just under the 21 events (counting the ToC) that were on the Season XV roster.

The two new events also ensure that the WPT will be the focal point of the poker world for much of the month of May. With the WPT Elite Poker Championship and the WPT $ 25,000 High Roller at the Bellagio and the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic and the WPT Tournament of Champions at ARIA, the WPT will engage poker audiences until deep in the month. At that point, the World Series of Poker begins as the WPT takes a break.

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ESPN WSOP Broadcast Schedule Released

 ESPN WSOP Broadcast Schedule Released

For the second year in a row, ESPN and Poker Central are teaming up to broadcast the 2018 World Series of Poker Main Event. Combined, the two will air “start to finish everyday coverage” of the granddaddy of all poker tournaments from July 2nd through July 14th. Last week, ESPN and the WSOP released the broadcast schedule for ESPN and ESPN2.

During the times that the WSOP is not airing on the ESPN family of networks, Poker Central will stream coverage on its subscription program, PokerGO. PokerGO will not show coverage that ESPN airs, nor will ESPN broadcast anything that PokerGO airs. They will complement each other, not overlap. In addition to the Main Event, ESPN and Poker Central will also air the $ 1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop.

“Last year, both ESPN viewership and PokerGO subscription numbers were very strong throughout the WSOP Main Event,” said JR McCabe, chief digital officer of Poker Central, in a press release. “This year, we’re doubling down on live coverage of the World Series of Poker by adding the Big One for One Drop and bringing even more live poker to fans worldwide.”

The ESPN schedule:

July 2 – 8:00 PM – 1:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 1A – ESPN2
July 3 – 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 1B – ESPN2
July 4 – 8:30 PM – 12:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 1C – ESPN2
July 5 – 10:00 PM – 12:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 2A/B – ESPN2
July 6 – 8:30 PM – 12:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 2C – ESPN2
July 7 – 6:00 PM – 10:30 PM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 3 – ESPN2
July 8 – 2:00 PM – 6:00 PM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 4 – ESPN
July 9 – 10:00 PM – 2:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 5 – ESPN2
July 10 – 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 6 – ESPN
July 11 – 12:30 AM – 2:00 AM ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 7 – ESPN2
July 12 – 9:00 PM – END ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 8 – ESPN (Final Table – 9 to 6 players)
July 13 – 9:00 PM – END ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 9 – ESPN (Final Table – 6 to 3 players)
July 14 – 9:00 PM – END ET – WSOP Main Event: Day 10 – ESPN (Final Table – 3 players to champion)
July 17 – 12:00 AM – 2:00 AM ET – WSOP Big One for One Drop: ESPN2 (Live)
July 17 – 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM ET – WSOP Big One for One Drop: ESPN2 (Tape replay)
July 17 – 9:00 PM – END ET – WSOP Big One for One Drop: ESPN2 (Live)
July 21 – 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM ET – WSOP Big One for One Drop: ESPN2 (Tape replay)

ESPN will also broadcast another 130 hours of “originally produced” episodes, meaning not live poker. Poker Central’s broadcast schedule will be released at a later date.

“We’re ecstatic that ESPN and Poker Central continue to raise the bar and deliver more live poker content to audiences across the globe,” said World Series of Poker executive director Ty Stewart. “Fans today demand immediacy and wall-to-wall coverage and this year’s offering delivers on that in spades.”

No pun intended.

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Partypoker to Roll Out Software Update, New Power Series Schedule

 Partypoker to Roll Out Software Update, New Power Series Schedule

On Friday, partypoker announced that it will release a software update on February 24th which will “see a number of significant improvements to the playing experience.” In the same blog post, the online poker also revealed that it will launch the new Power Series on March 5th. Let’s take a closer look at each.

The software update appears to largely cosmetic, though cosmetic can be good if it makes it easier to see what’s going on at the virtual tables. In the partypoker blog post, the following changes were listed:

• Re-introduction of the oval shaped table alongside the existing table design
• New and improved player plates with larger fonts, improving players’ multi-tabling experience
• Improved display of player notes
• A brand new time-bank indicator
• A number of smaller enhancements, improving the look and feel of the tables

So, nothing earth-shattering, but if things on the table are easier to see and read, especially for multi-tablers, these changes should be positive.

As for the Power Series, we will have to wait and see, as the new schedule won’t be revealed until March. Partypoker says the new schedule will have “increased guarantees, an improved mix of game types and optimised structures.”

And since this is online poker, there will be leader boards. The weekly Power Series leader boards will start March 5th and will be divided into low, medium, and high buy-in levels in order to give as many players as possible a chance to earn rewards. The top ten players each week on the high leader board will receive a $ 5,300 seat to the Millions Online tournament later this year. Those who finish in the top ten more than once will receive $ 5,300 in tournament dollars.

The top twenty players on each leader board will receive prizes. The medium and low winners won’t get Millions Online seats, but rather tournament ticket prizes valued at $ 22 to $ 530.

Partypoker says the leader boards will pay out $ 60,000 per week in prizes, though it was not exactly clear in the blog post if that means $ 60,000 per leader board or $ 60,000 total across all three leader boards. It is likely the latter, as the ten $ 5,300 buy-in awards would leave $ 7,000 in prizes for the remaining 50 winners. That works out to an average of $ 140 per person, which seems reasonable, considering many of the prizes on the low and medium leader boards will probably be in the $ 22 range or slightly higher. $ 60,000 split among twenty people on a low buy-in leader board would be a bit much.

In the first month, the leader board prizes will be doubled in total value, as will the number of winners.

On the blog, partypoker Managing Director Tom Waters said:

We know that our players were expecting our 2018 Leaderboard promotion to start immediately after Powerfest, however we want the players to benefit from the enhanced playing experience on the new tables when working towards the leaderboard prizes. Therefore we have decided to delay the Leaderboard promotion until Monday 5th March to coincide with the launch of the new MTT schedule. We wanted to ensure that the players do not miss out on any value and therefore we have doubled the Leaderboard giveaway for the first month.

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partypoker Releases 2018 Tournament Series Schedule

 partypoker Releases 2018 Tournament Series Schedule

One of the nice things about the beginning of the year is that we move away from the holiday live tournament doldrums and get right into tournament season. The same holds true online and on Friday, while the site is in the midst of its Powerfest series, partypoker announced the full schedule of 10 online poker tournament festivals for 2018.

There are five different types of tournament series this year on partypoker, but two – the MILLIONS Online and High Roller Series – only happen once, at the end of the year. The Knockout Series, Monster Series, and Powerfest each occur three times and on the same rotating schedule.

Players on partypoker may already be familiar with the Monster Series and Powerfest, but the Knockout Series is new to the site this year. In the Knockout Series, every player starts a tournament with a bounty on their head; for every elimination, the player who wins the hand wins the other player’s bounty. It’s not all puppies and rainbows for the victor, though, as that person’s bounty increases, making them a juicier target. There will be three buy-in levels for each Knockout Series tournament, with buy-ins starting at $ 1.10 and going up to $ 530. The first Knockout Series will begin February 25th.

The High Roller Series, also new, is fairly straight-forward. It is simply a series with higher buy-ins than normal, $ 530 and up. It will last eight days starting November 25th and will run at the same time as the insane $ 20 million guaranteed MILLIONS Online.

On the partypoker blog, site ambassador Patrick Leonard said:

Festivals to me is what tournament poker is all about. You slog about all year honing your skills and testing strategies that you work on off the table all for that one big moment you get during a festival where you’re playing for huge prizes with great structures. Both live and online partypoker festival titles are seen as important as any to players through all stakes.

As mentioned, partypoker’s first tournament series of the calendar year, Powerfest, is going on right now, having started a week ago. It runs through this weekend and features 147 tournaments with $ 15 million in guaranteed prize pools. Like the Knockout Series, Powerfest has three different buy-in tournaments per event.

partypoker’s 2018 tournament series schedule follows. Detailed tournament schedule breakdowns can be found on partypoker’s website for the current series and usually for series starting in the near future.

partypoker POWERFEST – January 21st – February 4th
partypoker KO Series – February 25th – March 4th
partypoker Monster Series – April 29th – May 6th
partypoker POWERFEST – May 6th – May 20th
partypoker KO Series – June 2nd – June 10th
partypoker Monster Series – July 29th – August 6th
partypoker POWERFEST – September 2nd – September 23rd
partypoker KO Series – October 28th – November 4th
partypoker Monster Series – November 18th – November 25t
partypoker MILLIONS Online + HR Series – November 25th – December 5th

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WPT Announces Schedule for Tournament of Champions, New Event

 WPT Announces Schedule for Tournament of Champions, New Event

Originally set as a singular event, the World Poker Tour recently announced that the third running of the WPT Tournament of Champions, this year being held for the first time at ARIA in Las Vegas, would be joined by a new tournament previously unscheduled as well as other preliminary tournaments.

What is now being called the “Season XVI WPT Tournament of Champions Festival” will kick off on May 17 with its first event, a $ 10,000 buy-in Omaha Hi/Lo tournament. There will also be four one-day $ 25,000 “High Roller” tournaments and a solo $ 100,000 “Super High Roller” event. What will close out the festivities are the two official WPT events on the schedule, one the previously known Tournament of Champions and the other a new event.

The final official stop of the Season XVI schedule will now be the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic, a $ 10,000 buy-in event that wasn’t previously part of the discussion. The tournament is named for the former World Champion whose prowess on the poker tables and the boardrooms of Las Vegas have become legendary. With one opportunity for re-entry into the event, it is possible that the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic – which replaces the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Finale of the past two years – could be one of the bigger tournaments of this year when it begins on May 20.

“ARIA takes great pride in being the host of the Season XVI WPT Tournament of Champions,” said Sean McCormack, director of poker operations for ARIA. “We have developed a tremendous festival of events, highlighted by the premiere of the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic, and are excited to welcome the biggest names in poker to Las Vegas in May.”

Adam Pliska, the Chief Executive Officer of the World Poker Tour, added, “The World Poker Tour is thrilled to bring the illustrious WPT Tournament of Champions to the luxurious ARIA, as we close out a historic Season XVI. The WPT Tournament of Champions is our most prized event, and the winner will join Farid Yachou and Daniel Weinman as a WPT Tournament of Champions winner. We look forward to returning to Las Vegas, the birthplace of the WPT and the global home of poker, to crown this season’s champion of champions.”

Once the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic has concluded, the WPT Tournament of Champions will kick off its action. On May 24 (the day after the conclusion of the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic), the ToC will open play for its third ever event. All the champions of the Season XVI schedule will be in the field (they have already had $ 15,000 deducted from their prize winnings) and, if any previous WPT champion wishes to join the tournament, they will put up $ 15K to get in the game. In the past two seasons, there have been other additions to the prize pool, including last year’s tournament which saw an Audi up as one of the spoils to the victor.

One problem that the ToC has had:  getting the players out to take part in the tournament. Once you limit the field to only previous WPT champions (now totaling 237 players; it will be 243 by the end of the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic, if no previous champion wins again), you then must look at who is going to show. Some former champions, including Doyle Brunson and Mel Judah, aren’t as active in the tournament world anymore. Someone like Howard Lederer isn’t exactly considered welcome in tournaments (outside the WSOP, it seems) and unfortunately others have passed away (David ‘Devil Fish’ Ulliott). A look at the first two staging’s of this tournament demonstrate this difficulty in getting players.

When it was originally held in 2016 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, FL, 64 players came out as Farid Yachou captured the inaugural championship. Fast forward to 2017 and the number clicked up to 66 as David Weinman defeated Michael Mizrachi to capture the title. With the move to Las Vegas for the 2018 ToC, it is perhaps thought by WPT officials that more former champs will come out and take part in the tournament rather than go across the country to play the ToC in Florida.

It promises to be an outstanding week of poker in May as the WPT wraps up its Season XVI schedule by crowning its final champion, its Player of the Year and the next “champion of champions” with the Tournament of Champions!

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