2012 WSOP Takeaways: Too many events

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Jul 24, 2012 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

There was a lot going on at the 2012 World Series of Poker. From the controversies and complaints, to David “ODB” Baker’s Ben Lambish performance, to the Big One for One Drop tournament, to Phil Hellmuth’s 12th bracelet, to Phil Ivey’s five final tables in two weeks: It was a pretty wild ride at the 2012 WSOP.

Among all of the highs and lows there several things that stood out for me during the 2012 WSOP, and in this five-part series I’ll take a look at the five things I have taken away from the 2012 World Series of Poker.

* The prevalence of backing is destroying the public’s image if the professional poker player

* There are too many events at the WSOP

* The Big One for One Drop tournament saved the 2012 WSOP

* Women are still a small percentage of poker players, but that small percentage is pretty good

* The poker world as it stood in 2003 is now officially dead

There are too many events at the WSOP

This year the World Series of Poker tournament series schedule included 61 bracelet events as well as a litany of satellites, daily tournaments, and other events. Once again we had duplicate tournaments, some replicated three and four times on the WSOP schedule, and of course there are the 55 or so tournaments that the general public simply doesn’t care about that get close to zero mainstream coverage.

So where is the WSOP going wrong with their schedule? I think it’s plain to see that the tremendous number of tournaments overwhelms most followers of the game, and at the same time waters down all but the most important, and unique, events.

Outside of the $50k Poker Players Championship, the $1k Seniors Event, the $1k Ladies Championship, the $1,000,000 buy-in Big One for One Drop, and the $10k WSOP Main Event, the rest of the schedule is simply a watered down mess of preliminary tournaments.

BUT, if the WSOP simply made all of the preliminary events $2,500 tournaments, or whatever they feel is appropriate, and took them off the main WSOP schedule this problem could be solved. All WSOP bracelet events (real bracelets) should be in $10k buy-in Championship Events –maybe give the final table from the preliminary tournament of the same game free entries into the Championship event?

By doing this the official bracelet tally would be cut to fewer than 20, and virtually all of these events would be meaningful. The WSOP would be left with less prestigious $2,500 buy-in events to round out the schedule and attract players, and they could run a weekly $1,000 buy-in No limit Holdem event (like they already do!) to keep new players coming into the Rio.

The WSOP could hand out special bracelets to all of the $10k Championship events (and the events with higher buy-ins) , and keep a less prestigious WSOP bracelet for winners of the $2,500 events –these could still count towards overall bracelets and such, but we could start keeping track of $10k Championship bracelets as well. Basically, nobody is going to care about the $10k PLO tournament at the WSOP until it is elevated above the $1,500 PLO event, and so on.


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