We are just days away from the official launch of the 2023 World Series of Poker on May 30, excitement is building about the schedule – the WSOP’s biggest ever with a record 95 bracelets up for grabs.
The 54th edition of the Series will take place over seven weeks at the celebrated Horseshoe and Paris Las Vegas Casinos on the Strip. The festival made its debut at the properties last year and the move from its former home at the Rio has been widely welcomed.
This year’s World Series of Poker, which is running from May 30 through to July 18, looks like to be another record-breaker. The $10,000 No-Limit Hold’em World Championship – best known as the Main Event – starts on July 3. WSOP organisers are expecting a giant field and have launched an incredible promotion – if the 2023 Main Event breaks records, then everyone in the field will be placed in a draw giving them the chance to win a Main Event buy-in for the next 30 years!
The first World Series took place in 1970 and didn’t even have any tournaments; it was more of a cash game festival featuring formats like draw and seven card stud and was held at Binion’s Horseshoe Casino downtown. After ten days, Johnny Moss was voted “Best All Around Player” and awarded a silver cup. The prestigious but tiny event heralded the start of a poker phenomenon.
The Main Event
This year’s Main Event runs July 3-17 with four start flights and two Day 2s. Players will start with 60,000 in chips and two-hour levels. Last year’s event was the first to be held on the Las Vegas Strip and was the second-largest in history. Norway's Espen Jorstad seized the $10,000 first prize after defeating a field of 8,663 entries. British player John Eames was fourth for $3,000,000.
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As well as the Main Event, this year’s Series will feature numerous new events alongside well-known classics. The flagship opening event – starting May 31 – is the “Mystery Millions,” a $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold'em tournament featuring mystery bounties from $10,000 to $1 million for each knockout. The tournament’s winner is guaranteed to take home $1 million on top of any bounties they collect during the event.
This year’s Series will also feature the first-ever $300 bracelet event: the Gladiators of Poker is a six-day NLHE event with a $3m million guaranteed prize pool and pay-outs every flight. Other new events include the Ultra Stack plus debut standalone appearances for the Badugi and Big O poker variants. Both have previously been part of mixed events but will now have their $1,500 buy-in tournaments for the first time. There will also be a more affordable Short Deck event this year – with a $1,500 tournament now on the schedule.
The first week also sees plenty of mixed game action, with traditional early-WSOP events like the $1,500 and $10,000 Dealer's Choice tournaments taking place. Daily Deep Stack tournaments will once again run every day from June 1 to July 17, with buy-ins ranging from $200 to $400. In addition, Daily Mega Satellites will happen from May 31 to July 14 with buy-ins starting at $135 and topping off at $25,000.
Ty Stewart, SVP & Executive Director of the WSOP, said: “With the momentum generated from the WSOP’s debut on the Las Vegas Strip last year, we expect a record-breaking WSOP and World Championship at Paris and Horseshoe Las Vegas in 2023. If the Main Event is on your bucket list, this is the year to get to Vegas.”
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Story: Mark Valentine & Mad Harper, Photo Credit: WSOP