2014 WSOP Kicks Off Seven Weeks Of Poker Action In Las VegasMay 28, 2014 3:47 pm
The 45th Annual World Series of Poker kicked off on Tuesday, with the 65-event tournament series ushering in seven weeks of action at the Rio All Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Following a few words from WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart, and Tournament Director Jack Effel, who declared, “This is our Olympics. This is our Woodstock. This is our celebration,” the 2014 WSOP was officially launched after $10,000 in $1 bills was shot out of cannons into the air for the players to collect.
As is traditional, Event #1 is the Casino Employee Event where staff from casinos all over the globe are offered the opportunity to enter the $500 buy-in tournament and compete for a prestigious WSOP gold bracelet. Likewise, the final event of the Series will get underway starting July 5 when the $10k WSOP Main Event will see the more than 6,000 player field reduced to just nine by the end of the grueling 10 day affair, after which finalists take a break before resuming in November to decide the champion.
In between Event #1 and Event #65 around 80,000 players are expected to take part in the Series from over 100 different countries, although 74% of attendees are expected to hail from the United States. The majority of the rest will come from Canada, Australia and Europe, and overall 94% of total participants will be males with an average age of 38.
“It’s a very mentally tiring game, which is why you see this kind of younger age demographic,” explained WSOP spokesman Seth Palansky.
If this year is anything like the last then more than $197 million in prize money will be given out during the premiere tournament extravaganza. As well as the $10k Main Event usually providing the bulk of that tally with a prize pool just shy of $60 million last year, the WSOP $1 million charity buy-in game The Big One For One Drop, although capped at 56 players, will also add dramatically to the WSOP’s overall prize pool.
Other tournament to look out for this summer includes The $1,111 buy-in Little One for One Drop Re-Entry NL event; The $50,000 buy-in Poker Players Championship; the senior citizen’s event for players above the age of 50; and the $10k Ladies NL Championship. In addition, there will be the $1,500 Millionaire Maker, and commenting on poker’s showcase tournament series, WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart, said:
“There are a slew of events that will create millionaires this summer. That’s a real source of pride for us at the WSOP.”