The Pennsylvania Online Bracelet Series is currently in progress in the Keystone State, giving players an unprecedented—and unlikely to be repeated—chance to get their hands on the most coveted piece of poker swag.
This unique situation has come about due to WSOP PA launching in July—its only site that is not currently part of a shared liquidity network. This means that players in PA will only have to lock horns against others located within state borders.
Given the population of the Keystone State—the largest to have regulated online poker thus far—it was always likely that they would get their own bracelet series. Nevertheless, the fields will be considerably smaller and dare we say softer, than those elsewhere.
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Events Underway but Plenty More Value to Come
At the time of writing, two tournaments have completed. Event #1—the $500 NLH Keystone Kick Off— pulled in 425 runners with 75 rebuys. A respectable figure given traffic across the site but nonetheless, a comparatively tiny field in relation to the kind of numbers one would expect to face in almost any other WSOP bracelet event.
But this was a massive turnout compared to Event #2. The $500 NLH PKO attracted only 262 runners and 65 rebuys. The tournament was done and dusted in just over 10 hours—a remarkably short time for a World Series bracelet contest.
Event #3 was cancelled due to technical difficulties and will now be run on August 17. This has caused no small inconvenience for some unfortunate players, who travelled considerable distances to ensure they were in the jurisdiction and therefore eligible to play.
So, the next chance to duke it out for some WSOP hardware, is Event #4. The $400 NLH 6-Max starts at 17:30 on August 11 and is the joint-lowest buy-in of the eight bracelet tournaments on offer.
The low buy-in, low turnout field could provide a unique opportunity for anyone looking to carve their name in the annuls of WSOP history.
Single-state Bracelets Could be a One-off Occurrence
This could be the only time that players in Pennsylvania get their own dedicated Online Bracelet series. By the time that WSOP Online comes around again, there is a good chance that Pennsylvania will be part of a shared liquidity pool, resulting in vastly increased field sizes and making that shot at a title a far harder prospect.
This time next year, PA players may well have to compete against those in New Jersey, Nevada, and even Michigan —as WSOP is poised to go live in the Great Lake state any day now. Indeed, Michiganders may even get their own one-off bracelet opportunity, later this year.
With launch day imminent, it would provide another rare chance for players there to get their hands on the most iconic trophy poker has to offer.
There has been the odd grumbling of resentment in some quarters. A few detractors have complained that these smaller, confined events somewhat cheapen the kudos attached to a World Series triumph—but that is unlikely to worry anyone lucky enough to win one.
The Pennsylvania Online Bracelet Series is running currently and continues until August 15—with the rescheduled $3200 High Roller event taking place on August 17.