WSOP 2021: Everything You Need to Know WSOP 2021: Everything You Need to Know

Make no mistake, the 2021 WSOP will be the real deal and we’re preparing for a full house.The full schedule for the live World Series of Poker (WSOP) is out; online bracelets are set to begin domestically on WSOP.com on July 1 and internationally at GGPoker on August 1.

The biggest poker festival in the world is shaping up to be its largest in history, marking a triumphant return after a its partial postponement last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

While the WSOP announced an 88 event series a few weeks ago, beyond a few marquee events, there were few details about the full schedule. That has now changed with the release of all the events planned for the Rio in the fall.

Additionally, the first bracelet action is set to get underway very soon with the start of the online component of the series. Beginning July 1 on WSOP.com for the domestic US market, there will be 33 online bracelets on offer through the month of July for players in New Jersey and Nevada.

As the domestic online series winds down, the international version ramps up over on GGPoker, where another 33 bracelets will be awarded. There are likely to be some truly eye-watering prize pools during the international series—last year, the GGPoker WSOP Main Event set a record for the biggest online tournament at $27.5 million.

WSOP 2021 at a Glance

Series Location Start Date End Date Bracelet Events Planned
WSOP Online Domestic WSOP.com July 1 August 1 33
WSOP Online International GGPoker August 1 TBA 33
WSOP 2021 Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino September 30 November 23 88
WSOP 2021 Main Event Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino November 4 November 17 1
WSOPE 2021 King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic November 19 December 8 15

Plan Your WSOP with the Full Live Schedule

Among the highlights on the live schedule in Vegas is Event #84, Nosebleed PLO, the biggest buy-in pot limit Omaha tournament ever at $50,000 for a seat. That highlights a schedule with several nosebleed games including $50,000, $100,000, and $250,000 buy-in hold’em games.

Another new addition this year is the innovative Event #20: $1000 buy-in FLIP & GO No-Limit Hold’em. Based on the popular Flip & Go format on international online partner GGPoker, Event #20 is the first time the format has run in a live setting.

Combining the flipout with pineapple and regular poker, the event will see a round where players flip after discarding one of three cards on the flop, until only one player is left at each table. Those players then convene for a round 2 of normal poker, with all remaining players in the money.

Much of the schedule will look familiar to WSOP fans from the past. The $10,000 Championship events are back across the major poker disciplines like hold’em, stud, and Omaha, as is the ever-popular $50,000 Poker Player’s Championship dealer’s choice event.

With the release of the full schedule, the entire Main Event is now fully in place. While the starting days were previously set, there was less detail on the middle. That has now been clarified, and after Day 7 plays down to 9 players on November 14, the remaining November Nine will have a day off before starting the final table on Tuesday November 16.

WSOP 2021 Full Main Event Schedule

Flight Day Date
Day 1A Thursday November 4
Day 1B Friday November 5
Day 1C Saturday November 6
Day 1D Sunday November 7
Day 2A (for flights 1A and 1B) Monday November 8
Day 2B (for flights 1C and 1D) Tuesday November 9
Day 3 Wednesday November 10
Day 4 Thursday November 11
Day 5 Friday November 12
Day 6 Saturday November 13
Day 7 (play down to 9) Sunday November 14
Break Day Monday Novenmber 15
Final Table Day 1 Tuesday November 16
Final Table Day 2 Wednesday November 17

Ty Stewart, WSOP’s Executive Director, is excited about it all. “Make no mistake, the 2021 WSOP will be the real deal and we’re preparing for a full house.” Below is the full schedule. Click on each image for a larger version.

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Key Answers from Ty Stewart

With the first bracelet events of 2021 set to go starting July 1 on WSOP.com, pokerfuse caught up with WSOP’s Executive Director Ty Stewart to find out how this year was shaping up.

Stewart was excited at the return of live poker. When asked what excited him most, he was pretty clear. “Everything. It will have been 26 months since we bagged up the last chips and we’ve missed it.”

He was excited especially about the Reunion theme of the event this year, highlighted by the early $5 million Guaranteed, $500 buy-in The Reunion tournament starting Oct 1. He was optimistic about the chance for international travelers to make it to the US by the fall, indicating that was a key reason why they chose not to run the series in the traditional time slot.

“We think there are positive developments regarding international travel and expect it to continue to improve by October/November. This is one of the primary reasons we waited until fall instead of trying to rush the series for now which would have made it primarily domestic players.”

Check out the full interview for all the juicy details.

Online Satellites Have Begun

Online satellites are underway for the WSOP Main Event. Domestic US operator WSOP.com, on software powered by 888poker, has already run the first domestic satellites.

Tickets to the “Big Show”

The first satellite ran on June 6, and came close to awarding two WSOP Main Event tickets. With 93 total entries, the $215 game gave away one full seat to the Main, along with $8,600 in cash for second.

That was the first edition of a weekly event slated to hand out Main Event tickets every Sunday. The satellite is limited to US players only, as they run on the WSOP New Jersey and WSOP Nevada clients exclusively. While players on the Delaware racinos are also part of the only multi-state network in the US poker landscape, the WSOP satellites are not being offered there.

Main Event Satellite Details at a Glance

  • Sundays at 3:30 PM PST
  • Buy-in: $200 + $15
  • Minimum entries: 8
  • Starting Chips: 5,000
  • Blinds increase: Every 10 minutes
  • 1 Re-Entry allowed, $215 for 5,000 chips
  • 120 minutes of late registration and re-entry
  • Players must be in New Jersey or Nevada to play

Domestic Online Bracelet Qualifiers

In addition to the live Main Event satellites, WSOP.com is running qualifiers to some of the online bracelet events running in the domestic US market in July. Satellites are available for $500 and $1,000 bracelet events, and are spread throughout the week on WSOP.com.

As with the satellites to the Main Event, the online bracelet qualifiers are only available to players in Nevada and New Jersey. Games start at $5 for $500 tickets, so there is a real chance for players to win a bracelet for almost nothing.

WSOP.com Online Bracelet Satellites in June 2021

Satellite Buy-In Weekday Starting Time
$500 Event $10 Daily 6.00 PM PST
$500 Event $5 Daily 7.30 PM PST
$500 Event $5 Sundays 3.30 PM PST
$1,000 Event $30 Tuesdays 5.30 PM PST
$1,000 Event $30 Saturdays 2.30 PM PST

WSOP Online 2021

In 2020, as a result of the pandemic, the whole series was moved online, a move that was immensely popular: Both domestically in the USA, and internationally, the WSOP Online 2020 was a huge success.

In partnership with WSOP.com and 888 in the US, and GGPoker in the international sphere, the online series in 2020 gave away well over $150 million in prizes. The international Online Main Event in 2020 set a world record for the largest online tournament ever with $27.5 million in prizes.

There are already plans in place for the online version in 2021, at least for the US market. Domestic US action for the WSOP online kicks off on July 1 this year and will culminate with a $1,000 championship event, with qualifiers available for as little as $1.

There are 33 event planned for WSOP.com across the month long online poker extravaganza, including a huge Grand Finale on August 1 with $1,000,000 guaranteed for just $500.

The series is mostly no limit hold’em, but there are a few pot limit Omaha games sprinkled in as well, including the PLO Championship on July 26 with a buy-in of $1,000. There are no details on the international component of the online WSOP for this year yet, but given the huge success of 2020 at GGPoker, an even bigger repeat seems likely.

WSOP Online 2021 Domestic Schedule

Theme Event Tournament Type Date Buy-In
Premiere Week 1 The Big 500 Kick-Off NLH July 1 $500
2 Monster Stack NLH July 2 $600
3 DeepStack Turbo NLH July 3 $500
4 Super Turbo NLH July 4 $500
5 8-Max NLH July 5 $1,000
6 Deepstack NLH July 6 $2,000
7 Lucky 7’s NLH July 7 $777
8 Crazy Eights NLH July 8 $888
Micro Madness 9 6-Max NLH July 9 $400
10 Event #10 NLH July 10 $333
11 Ultra Deepstack NLH July 11 $400
PLO Week 12 Turbo Deepstack NLH July 12 $500
13 Freezeout NLH July 13 $1,000
14 Event #14 NLH July 14 $500
15 High Roller Freezeoout NLH July 15 $5,300
16 6-Handed PLO8 July 16 $600
17 8-Max NLH July 17 $400
18 North American Open NLH July 18 $1,000
19 Crazy Eights PLO July 19 $888
20 High Roller NLH July 20 $3,200
21 6-Handed PLO July 21 $600
22 Knockout NLH July 22 $600
23 Turbo NLH July 23 $500
24 MonsterStack NLH July 24 $400
Double Bracelet Day 25 Lucky 7’s High Roller NLH July 25 $7,777
26 The Big 500 Encore NLH July 25 $500
Championship Week 27 Championship PLO July 26 $1,000
28 High Roller Championship NLH July 27 $3,200
29 8-Max Turbo Deepstack Championship NLH July 28 $800
30 6-Max Championship NLH July 29 $600
31 Summer Saver NLH July 30 $500
32 Championship NLH July 31 $1,000
$1 Million Guaranteed 33 Grand Finale NLH August 1 $500

GGPoker Officially Named International Bracelet Partner

International dot-com operator GGPoker has been announced as WSOP’s official partner this year, running bracelet events on its global online poker platform as well as official satellites to the live Main Event.

The announcement was expected, given the phenomenal performance of the ad-hoc 2020 partnership between GGPoker and WSOP that resulted in a huge international bracelet series hosted online. That was necessary, of course, after the COVID pandemic shut down live poker unexpectedly in March of 2020, and the WSOP had to scramble to find a way to hold the festival.

GGPoker stepped up to the plate in a big way, putting on a huge online festival that set records with the Main Event. The success of that series made this announcement something of a formality, but that formality is now a reality.

There are very few details available yet beyond the basic announcement, but the international online bracelet events will run on GGPoker between August 1 and September 12. GGPoker will also be hosting satellites to the live Main Event starting in August.

The new deal hints at a change in the global marketing strategy for WSOP. In the past, 888poker has been the international partner offering satellites to the live events, but the new deal with GGPoker suggests a change to that long-standing partnership.

There are still no details on the full schedule for the online festival on GGPoker, other than start and end dates. It is also unclear if there will be any international WSOP satellites anywhere outside the GGPoker network, however details should flesh out in the coming weeks.

The Big Show in Vegas

The World Series of Poker plans to come back in a big way to live poker in 2021 with almost eight weeks of live action planned at Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. The series gets underway on September 30, and is expected to end November 23.

Opening weekend events are expected to include a charity event for frontline workers, a $25,000 H.O.R.S.E. tournament, and “The Reunion,” a $5 million GTD No-Limit Hold’em event.

The Main Event is the game on everyone’s mind, and WSOP has announced that it will run four day 1s starting on November 4. That indicates a full Main Event, similar to pre-pandemic years.

And while this is purely coincidental, with the Main Event scheduled to play the final day on November 17, 2021, it will mark the return of the “November 9” for the first time since 2016, albeit without a months-long break beforehand.

WSOP to be Broadcast on CBS Sports

There is big news from the WSOP off the felt as well, with the beginning of a new broadcast deal with CBS Sports The new deal replaces the old deal with ESPN that ends an era of WSOP broadcasting that followed the meteoric rise of the WSOP on the back of the Moneymaker phenomenon.

Fans can expect some solid coverage. The announcement detailed plans for more than 50 hours of live poker action from the WSOP, including 15 hours of Main Event coverage.

The new deal isn’t entirely new. CBS Sports was the originator of poker on television in the US, with the first national broadcasts of the WSOP Main Event in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Those early broadcasts featured legends of the game like Puggy Pearson, Doyle Brunson, Stu Unger, and Billy Baldwin, and while they were vastly different from what viewers should expect from the modern version, they give CBS a solid foundation to build on.

Other details of the new deal are yet to be finalized, though there is hope that the new broadcast may have a familiar feel to it. No firm plans have been announced, but veteran WSOP commentator Lon McEachern seems confident the team will remain intact.

Live Bracelets in Europe

If nearly eight weeks of poker, including a full-size Main Event, at the Rio in Las Vegas isn’t enough of a return to normalcy, the international side of the series is also slated to return. King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic has been tapped to host the WSOP Europe 2021 starting November 19.

“We hope and anticipate travel restrictions will ease by the fall,” said Ty Stewart, WSOP Executive Director. “It’s important to us that we have an excellent tournament schedule available to our European players.”

The current plan is to have a European Series that gives away 15 bracelets, including a €50,000 High Roller, and a €10,000 WSOP Europe Main Event.

Proceed with Caution

Given the past 13 months, it’s important to recognize all plans could be subject to change. WSOP cautions that all live events are subject to applicable state and/or regulatory approvals, including all relevant health and public safety guidelines and restrictions.

There is every reason to believe that conditions in many parts of the world will be improved by the end of 2021, and WSOP is putting a bet on it. The proposed live schedule is ambitious, and if it goes forward as planned, would signal the return of live poker in force. Stay tuned on April 15 for more information on the upcoming plans, and let’s hope the WSOP wins their bet against COVID.

FAQ

When does WSOP run in 2021?

The live portion in Las Vegas is set to run from September 30 through November 23, but there is also a European component, and two online festivals as well. The online version in WSOP NJ and WSOP NV started July 1 and runs for a month; this leads into the international version on GGPoker, from August 1.

Series Location Start Date End Date Bracelet Events Planned
WSOP 2021 Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino September 30 November 23 88
WSOP 2021 Main Event Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino November 4 November 17 1
WSOPE 2021 King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic November 19 December 8 15
WSOP Online Domestic WSOP.com July 1 August 1 33
WSOP Online International GGPoker August 1 TBA 33

What is the Full Schedule?

Details on the full schedule can be found above, as well as at pokerfuse’s rundown of the schedule. The full schedule for the domestic online component of the series is also posted above, with events running through the entire month of July.

There are no full details yet on the international online portion at GGpoker. Action will get underway on August 1, but no schedule has yet been published.

Can I fly internationally to Las Vegas?

This remains an open question and international travel regulations and requirements are changing rapidly in the current world. WSOP’s Ty Stewart expects recent loosening of international rules to continue, but he admitted the uncertainty around travel was a key reason they postponed the series till the fall this year.

At the moment, it looks like travel will be open by the end of September, but Stewart is hopeful that the later start date will allow a large number of international players to travel in.

Will it be safe?

Stewart and the the WSOP are committed to running a safe series. “We will follow the same health and safety protocols as other forms of casino gaming in Nevada,” he said.

“While many of the social distancing mandates have relaxed with today’s higher vaccination rates, we’re very aware of people’s changing emotions regarding crowds. Avoiding registration lines is one of our biggest focal areas. We are imploring all players to use the online registration available through Bravo Poker Live when it opens in a few weeks’ time.”

Will there be a WSOP Europe this year?

Yes, the series is scheduled to run immediately following the series in Vegas. Hosted by King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic, the games run from November 19 through December 8.

How many bracelets are on offer this year?

The live series in the fall is scheduled to give away 88 bracelets this year, only two less than the most ever in 2019. In addition to the live bracelets in Vegas, there will be 15 bracelets given away at WSOP Europe running immediately after the Vegas series.

Added to the live bracelets this year are 66 online bracelets. There are 33 bracelets on offer domestically online on WSOP.com, with another 33 to fight for internationally on GGPoker.

Do I have to be Vaccinated to take part in the WSOP 2021?

Yes, all players as well as media, spectators and staff are required to be fully vaccinated to take part in this year’s WSOP series.

As per WSOP’s vaccination policy, players must receive their final dose at least 14 days prior to their participation date.

For instance, a player looking to take part in the opening day of the WSOP 2021, Thursday, September 30 must receive their final dose by Thursday, September 16. Similarly, players looking to enter Day 1A of the Main Event on November 4, must get their final dose by October 21.

Vaccines To Play Opening Day (Sep 30) To Play Day 1A of Main Event (Nov 4) Dose
Johnson & Johnson Must receive single dose by Sep 16 Must receive single dose by Oct 21 One
Pfizer Must receive second dose by Sep 16 Must receive second dose by Oct 21 Two
Moderna Must receive second dose by Sep 16 Must receive second dose by Oct 21 Two

What about Players Outside the US?

International players and other staff members can also show proof of the AstraZeneca vaccine as long as the final dose was received at least two weeks prior to registration at the WSOP.

Will I Still Have to Wear Marks?

Yes, the state of Nevada has made it mandatory for the public to wear masks at all times for indoor gatherings.

If I’m not Fully Vaccinated, Can I show a Negative Test for Covid?

No, players must be fully vaccinated to take part in the series and wear masks at all times. Players cannot show a negative test for admittance.