An additional feast for US-based poker players awaits just days after the Christmas Holidays. For the first time, poker enthusiasts located in New Jersey can participate in a WPT Main Tour online event. The WPT Online Poker Open $3500 Main Event features a guaranteed prize pool of $1 million with a single starting day and runs from December 27-29, 2020.
The guarantee for the event can certainly be considered as ambitious considering the fact that it takes place in the ring-fenced New Jersey market. Participants have to be located in the Garden State in order to access the tournament via the partypoker US network and can then register on either partypoker NJ, BetMGM Poker or Borgata Poker.
“The WPT Online Poker Open brings the most prestigious prize in poker to New Jersey and the partypoker US Network,” said Adam Pliska, CEO of the World Poker Tour. “WPT’s continued pivot toward online will continue with another landmark for regulated online poker in the United States.”
The namesake WPT Online Poker Open already took place back in June 2020, the $400 Main Event attracted a field of 868 entries. The prize pool of $317,540 set a new record for the partypoker US network back then, which has since been toppled.
In September 2020, the World Poker Tour teamed up with partypoker New Jersey once more to host the WPT Borgata Online Series. The festival included 10 events in total, and the $1,060 Main Event attracted a field of 440 entries for a prize pool of $432,700. Tony ‘ToNiSiNzz’ Sinishtaj emerged as the champion and claimed the top prize of $77,349.
A total of $917,300 in prize money was awarded throughout the series, which will now be surpassed in the days to come.
With at least $1 million up for grabs, the $3500 Main Event equals the biggest guarantee in the history of regulated online poker in the US. During the 2018 World Series of Poker, two WSOP Online Bracelet Events featured the same guarantee in the shared player pool of New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware.
“WPT Online and the partypoker US Network are pushing online poker in New Jersey and the United States to another peak with the WPT Online Poker Open Main Tour event,” said Angelica Hael, VP of Global Tour Management for the World Poker Tour. “Following back-to-back record-setting events, this $1 million guarantee will push our partnership to new heights.”
The overall online poker traffic in New Jersey has also seen a significant leap compared to the previous year and will aim to finish 2020 on a high. For the first time in its history, the New Jersey online poker market produced revenue of more than $30 million and had achieved that by September already. The partypoker US Network enjoyed the biggest growth among all competitors and was up 78%.
Winner Joins the WPT Champion’s Club
The winner of the WPT Online Poker Open Main Tour Event in New Jersey will have their name engraved on the Mike Sexton WPT Champions Cup. Five players achieved this feat during the international WPT World Online Championships $10,000 Main Event on partypoker in July and September 2020.
On top of the prize money and the bragging rights, the newest member of the WPT Champions Club will also receive a $15,000 seat into the prestigious WPT Tournament of Champions presented by Baccarat Crystal.
Among those competing will be WPT Main Event champion Tony Dunst, who hopes to fade his WPT lead commentator duties alongside Vince Van Patten for the live-streamed final table on December 29. Dunst will make the road trip to the Garden State in order to try to add a second WPT Main Tour title to his resume.
“partypoker US Network welcomes the Mike Sexton WPT Champions Cup back to New Jersey for the WPT Online Poker Open. This event promises the opportunity for players of all bankrolls to compete for the most coveted prize in poker,” said Ray Stefanelli, Director of Poker for partypoker US Network, back when the event was first announced. “Come December, we look forward to welcoming players from across the US to New Jersey for a chance to compete for their share of the $1 million guarantee.”
Satellites Allow new Jersey Poker Players to Enter Prestigious WPT Event for Less
Prior to the weekend on which the $3500 Main Event is hosted, nearly 150 players were already registered putting the event on track to meet the ambitious guarantee. Among them were more than 100 satellite winners who have entered the fray on a bargain.
The satellite system on the partypoker US network has given players the chance to win their entry from as low as $0.25 with further step qualifiers available at $5, $45 and $400.
2020 WPT Online Poker Open $3,500 Main Event at a Glance
- $3200 + $300 buy-in
- $1 million guarantee
- Unlimited re-entries for the first 12 levels
- Only available to players located in New Jersey
- Winner joins WPT Champions Club; name engraved in Mike Sexton WPT Champions Cup
- Live-streamed final table with cards-up coverage and commentary