History of Poker Game Guide

The History of Poker Tournaments


The History of Poker Tournaments Poker Tournament Development

Since the inception of the World Series of Poker in 1970 that saw seven entrants, the popularity of poker tournaments has grown exponentially.

The Beginning of the Poker Tournament Era

The beginning of the poker tournament era and its development can be attributed to a number of factors; however a major contributor is the World Series of Poker. This event set a trend that has been growing steadily ever since it began in 1970.

The World Series of Poker

The World Series of Poker (WSOP) began in 1970 and attracted a total of seven players. The tournament was held at the Binion's Horseshoe Casino in Las Vegas and was heavily promoted by the casino owner and poker player, Benny Binion. The event was won by Johnny Moss. The WSOP spread out of Las Vegas to be held in venues across the United States. In 2003, Harrah's Casino bought the exclusive rights to host the event every year and it is now held at the Rio Hotel and Casino. In 2007, the first World Series of Poker Europe was held.

Today, the World Series of Poker awards more than $100,000,000 in prize money and awards at least fifty five gold bracelets for winners of each event. In 2005, more than 5,600 players participated in the tournament. In 2006, the Main Event championship prize was $12,000,000. The WSOP Europe offered a prize pool of more than 7,000,000 in its first year. In 2009, the WSOP included a total of 57 different events.

Television and Poker Tournaments

In 2003, hole card cameras allowed people to watch poker tournaments live on television. This meant that major events such as the World Series of Poker could now be televised and enjoyed by poker enthusiasts around the world. This led to the creation of a large number of televised live tournaments. Other live tournaments also capitalized on the success of the televised WSOP, such as the World Poker Tour.

The Internet and Poker Tournaments

With the increased popularity of the Internet and online gambling, online poker tournament gained popularity as well. These online tournaments gave people the opportunity to compete for huge prizes without having to put up massive entry fees.

Other Poker Tournaments around the World

While poker tournaments began with the US based World Series of Poker, they have spread in popularity around the world. As mentioned above, in 2007, the WSOP Europe was established. The European Poker Tour also attracts large numbers of players who compete in the season finale in Monte Carlo every year. For those in the Asia Pacific region, there is plenty on offer too. The Aussie Millions has been growing in size every year and the Asian Pacific Poker tournament is extremely popular.

Poker tournaments are now popular in colleges and universities around the United States. Beginning in the fall of 2008, college graduates Craig Rabin and Jason Beck are starting a poker tournament that will tour college campuses. Students can enroll in poker classes through the colleges and if you find yourself at Illinois State University, the University of South Carolina or Ohio University, you can enjoy the touring poker tournament as well.

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