True Facts about the WSOP

Posted by Gerry Poltorak on May 23, 2018 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

Poker isn’t like most casino games – if you’re playing slots or roulette, getting a healthy casino bonus under your belt and crossing your fingers are the best options you have for improving your odds. But when it comes to Poker, your skill at playing your opponents and managing your bets is an integral part of success. This increased element of skill is one of the big reasons some fans consider the game a sport and also why pro-players are afforded so much respect. But more than that, the World Series has become a major entertainment event!

Starting in 1973, with a special broadcast narrated by Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder on behalf of Binion’s Horseshoe (the original home for the World Series), the event has held a place as a major televised spectacle in America. In the 1980’s, ESPN bought the rights and began broadcasting but the coverage consisted of a single one-hour taped-delay broadcast of the Main Event. The coverage remained fairly low-key up until the early 2000’s where Fred Christenson secured the rights for broadcast and dramatically expanded what ESPN showed of the tournament. Prior to this, the only thing they showed was the Main Event but after 2003 they began covering other events and doing an hour of coverage for each day of the tournament. This expansion rushed on with the coverage forming a more important part of the event and lead to an experiment in 2008 where the final table was scheduled to be played later in the year in order to increase sponsorship opportunities.

This later became known as the “November Nine” where the qualifying players for the Main Event’s final table would be decided and then the last event would wait a few months in order to build up excitement and ratings. While this did indeed boost ratings, it wasn’t well received by everyone. Most notably, Ylon Schwartz, one of the November Nine in 2008 when they first attempted it is quoted by Poker News Daily as saying: “It ruins the integrity of the tournament. The purity of old-time Las Vegas is gone. The antiquity and purity of the tournament have been liquidated into pure greed and capitalism”. This decision was reversed in 2017 and there’s been no word of reintroducing the concept in 2018.

With the most thorough coverage yet seen and a colossal number of events on offer, this World Series is looking like it’s going to be outstanding! Here are some facts about the tournament to help whet your appetite.

WSOP Facts


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