The first tournament series on BetMGM Poker Michigan has run its course. After a slow start, things started to pick up and the operator will have many positives to take from it.
The week-long series saw 2229 entries in total and easily surpassed its overall guarantee of $300,000, but that doesn’t come close to telling the whole story.
It was a shaky start when neither of the first two tournaments managed to meet its guarantee. A fact that must have worried the BetMGM MI, whose new online poker room is very much in its infancy in the Michigan online poker market.
Proceedings got underway earlier this month on a Sunday, traditionally the busiest day of the week—so it must have come as quite a shock for BetMGM when event number one fell well short of its promised $75,000, resulting in a $7200 overlay for the operator.
When the second event also missed its guarantee, it must have been a oncern. Online poker has only been available in the state since January of this year, and when PokerStars Michigan held its inaugural tournament—MICOOP—at the end of February, it massively exceeded expectations, with guarantees increased several times to keep in line with the huge fields it was attracting.
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A Strong Finale for the Debut Series
However, the numbers began to pick up thereafter, and the third event—a $109 PLO tournament—easily surpassed its target, suggesting that there is more enthusiasm for Omaha in Michigan than BetMGM was expecting.
The series’ second weekend went much better than the first, and all three Sunday events easily surpassed their promised prize pools. Event number nine, the Sunday Half-Price 8-Max was a particular success, generating more than 2½ times its original guarantee.
The tournament generated $50,100 and was won by Zzulran who pocketed $8442 for the victory. But that wasn’t the biggest win of the week. The final event was the $75K GTD Sunday Special. The buy-in was $525 and player with the handle dpg123 took the victory, and a tasty $20,072 that went with it.
Overall, BetMGM will be pleased with series. It was put together in double-quick time after its MI poker room went live on March 22, and it will have provided them with plenty to think about before holding its next tournament series.
Spring is a difficult time to host your inaugural series, especially as BetMGM was busy elsewhere. A lot of energy will have been focused on the launch of its poker room in Pennsylvania. But BetMGM MI can count its debut MI poker series as a success.
The $300,000 total guarantee was easily matched and whilst there was $13,800 in overlays, a final figure of $360,302 in prizes must be seen as a sign of promising potential.
More Action on the Horizon for Michigan Players
It should be remembered that online poker in Michigan is still in its fledgling stages. For BetMGM to even attempt to run a $300,000 series—less than a month after the site launched—is a sign of great ambition.
It may not have had the size and scope of PokerStars firsts MI series—10 events, as opposed to MICOOP’s 60—but it has laid the groundwork for bigger and better festivities in the future.
Poker fans in Michigan will not have to wait long for their next big series. PokerStars flagship spring festival MISCOOP is just around the corner. There are 120 events and a whopping $2 million in guarantees.
MISCOOP 2021 is likely to be one of the biggest online poker jamborees ever seen in the regulated US markets. The series begins May 8 and runs until May 24.