The Main Event is barely over, and WSOP 2021 still has 20 or bracelets to be decided—yet the build up to next year’s series has already begun in earnest.
The rumors had been doing the rounds for months, but on Wednesday, Caesars Entertainment confirmed that the World Series of Poker is moving to the Las Vegas Strip, and its 53rd edition will be held at Bally’s and Paris.
WSOP 2022 will run from May 31 through July 19, and the event’s official celebrity Master of Ceremonies will be actor and comedian, Vince Vaughn.
After 17 years, during which time the game of poker has been utterly transformed, the Rio will be finally waving goodbye to the biggest poker festival on the face of the planet.
The Series had moved there in 2005 after Chris Moneymaker’s iconic win kick-started the poker boom. Two years later, the WSOP’s original home Binion’s was no longer big enough to hold the event.
The move had been anticipated ever since Caesars sold the Rio two years ago. It stayed on to manage the property for two years, and quickly confirmed that the 2020 series would stay in place—a festival that was ultimately cancelled.
This year also stayed at the Rio, but it was expected that next year’s event would be moved to other Caesars properties in Las Vegas. Both Bally’s and Paris have been rumored as its next location, but this week is the first official confirmation.
The Build Up Starts Here
World Series of Poker Senior Vice President, Ty Stewart reflected on the last seven weeks: “As we approach the Final Table, we look back on yet another successful Main Event that exceeded expectations.”
But the World Series never stands still for long. In the same breath, Stewart was already starting up the PR machine, ahead of next year’s extravaganza.
“We are absolutely thrilled with this year’s turnout, both domestically and internationally. As we close out this chapter at the Rio, we are excited to have the iconic Vince Vaughn usher in a new era of WSOP at Bally’s and Paris next summer.”
Vaughn, a keen poker player, was on hand to make the “shuffle up and deal” announcement for the Main Event’s final table. The “Dodgeball” and “Wedding Crashers” star is clearly looking forward to his new role.
“I have such a strong connection to Las Vegas and am honored to be selected as the Master of Ceremonies for what is set to be the most anticipated World Series of Poker tournament ever,” Vaughn enthused.
“Poker has long been one of my favorite sports, so to be a part of something as historic as the WSOP finally moving to the Strip is an absolute dream. Vegas Baby, Vegas!”
Only Six Months to Go
We had to wait a long while for this edition of the World Series. An in-person event was impossible last year because of Covid-19, and even this year’s schedule had to be pushed back several months. The flip side of that coin is that we will have to wait a lot less time for the next installment to come round.
Indeed, the disruption to the calendar means that poker fans have a mere 194 days to wait before the WSOP juggernaut gets rolling again. However, with winter just around the corner and many parts of the world seeing Coronavirus figures rise yet again, those dates come with an inevitable asterisk.
If all goes well, the full schedule for WSOP 2022 should be published in January. And the series itself will run from May 31 until July 19.