For many poker fans, tournaments are the most exciting time of the year. Whether they are competing and testing their skills or tuning in to watch the biggest names in poker go head-to-head, millions of people are drawn to the drama of poker tournaments.
Many of these tournaments are held every single year, with numerous locations all around the world hosting competitions for people to watch in person or on television. In this guide, we’re going through some of the biggest and most popular tournaments out there, and exploring a little about their history as well as the prize money they have on offer.
World Series of Poker
The World Series of Poker (WSOP as it is commonly known) is what will pop into many people’s heads when they think of poker tournaments.
It is one of the oldest tournaments of its type, taking place in Nevada annually, the event dates back over 50 years. There are some stunning fun facts WSOP 2023 viewers may not be aware of, such as the fact that this year the total prize pool is expected to be in excess of $350 million. These facts can also help with making predictions about the outcome of the poker tournament. For instance, Phil Hellmuth, known as the “Poker Brat” has won more WSOP bracelets than any other player with 16. He’s one to watch for the 2023 tournament.
When it comes to the World Series of Poker finals, over one million people usually tune in to watch the top professionals, and we’ve seen some high drama over the years. Whoever finishes first in the final table this year will receive $12,100,000 in prize money, which is quite the increase from the first-place prize in 1971, when Johnny Moss won $30,000. This was the first year that the tournament wasn’t a cash game.
The number of entrants has also grown significantly, from six when the tournament started to an incredible 10,043 in the 2023 WSOP event. Anyone can enter as long as they are 21 and willing to pay the entry fee, and this has led to some interesting underdog stories in the WSOP.
This is a tournament that will forever be linked to Las Vegas, arguably the most iconic venue in the world for playing poker.
PokerStars Players Championship
The PokerStars events see a huge number of players get involved, which is little surprise when you look at some of the stunning venues that are used for their tournament. It is held in the Caribbean, with the Atlantis Bahamas Luxury Resort among the venues that have been used for the Championship. The Bahamas is home to some of the best beaches in the world and provides a stunning setting for the tournament.
The full name of the tournament is the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship which is often abbreviated to PSPC.
The tournament costs $25,000 to enter and usually gets thousands of entries, Aliaksandr Shylko won the tournament in 2023 and took home over $3 million in prize money.
World Poker Tour
The World Poker Tour culminates in a World Championship event, with a five-figure buy-in. The venue has changed throughout the years, but there are usually around 2,500 players who take part in the tournament.
The winner of the tournament in 2022 got over $4 million. In fact, Eliot Hudon who won the tournament was a relative unknown in the world of poker before he managed to take the title. In 2023, the World Championship will take place in December, and this marks the 20-year anniversary of the tournament. It isn’t quite as old as the WSOP but this is still a very popular tournament.
European Poker Tour
The European Poker Tour started not long after the World Poker Tour and is one of the more unique tournaments out there due to the fact that the venues jump around. Events have been held in England, Spain, and Germany, and these are just a few examples.
There are a number of different main events throughout the year, most of them get over 1,000 players taking part and the payout ranges can vary greatly, so the tournament has plenty of differences when compared to the others, which culminate in one final. The average prices for the main events average over $1 million. The tour still has to visit Barcelona, Cyprus, and Prague in the remainder of 2023.
For European poker fans, it is easy to see why the EPT has such a wide appeal as the events take place so regularly.
North American Poker Tour (NAPT)
Bursting onto the vibrant scene in 2010, the North American Poker Tour (NAPT) quickly etched its name in the annals of poker history. Resonating with the pulsating energy of poker enthusiasts across the US and Canada, this illustrious tour unfolds within the opulent realms of the most prestigious casinos. The NAPT is a spectacular stage where the dramatic theatre of Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha games play out. This prestigious platform, renowned for its collection of skilled gladiators and tantalising prize pools, is a captivating saga of strategic mastery and the seductive allure of fortune.
Triton Super High Roller Series
In a world where fortune favours the brave, the Triton Super High Roller Series is a glittering constellation. Launched in 2016, it has grown into a celestial gathering, summoning the world’s wealthiest players onto a battlefield adorned with towering stakes and multi-million-dollar treasures. With buy-ins soaring from $25,000 to an astronomical $1,000,000, this grand stage magnetises a diverse army of warriors, from poker demigods to affluent amateurs, all seeking the intoxicating adrenaline rush of an epic showdown.
Emerging from Melbourne’s Crown Casino, the Aussie Millions is a shimmering jewel in Australia’s poker crown. Since its inception in 1997, it has evolved into a global beacon, casting its enticing glow on the international poker circuit. The annual January event is a spectacular symphony of high-stakes games, crescendoing in a Main Event that summons the planet’s most formidable players. It is a thrilling ballet of bluff and bet, where the spoils of victory promise fame, fortune, and legendary status.
Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT)
In the heart of vibrant Latin America, the Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) is a radiant tapestry woven with threads of cultural richness and high-octane poker action. Sponsored by PokerStars and inaugurated in 2008, this enticing odyssey encompasses exotic locales such as Brazil, Argentina, and Chile. It is an enchanting quest where poker pros traverse uncharted lands, battling for substantial bounties. This unique fusion of cultural exploration and poker competition creates an irresistible lure, attracting knights of the poker table from every corner of the globe.