World Series of Poker Celebrates Golden Anniversary in 2019

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The World Series of Poker, which commences on May 29th and runs until July 16th, turns 50 this year. Yes, the ultimate pinnacle and pantheon for poker players everywhere on Earth celebrates its golden anniversary at the Rio All Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas; where it’s been staged every year since 2005.

It’s all capped off by the 2019 World Series of Poker main event- the poker’s world championship, which runs from July 3rd until the final day on July 16th. For those who can’t make it to Vegas, the ESPN family of networks will televise portions of it, every single night of the event’s duration.


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A full WSOP television schedule will be finalized and released at a later date. As of 2017, the World Series of Poker had expanded to 74 different events, and there seems to be new innovations and tweaks every single year.

Some of the changes worth noting for the golden edition of the WSOP are the bigger starting stacks and big blind ante. A majority of events this year will see major increases to the starting chip stack.

Where a $1,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em event last year started with 7,500 in chips, this year that event will start with 25,000 in chips. To coincide with the new starting chips, there have been accommodations made to the Big Blind Ante format in events with antes.

It’s amazing when you think about how the event has just grown exponentially over the past half-century.

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The card playing tournament of champions began way back in 1970, when gambling icon and extremely polarizing figure Benny Binion, according to Wikipedia, “invited seven of the best-known poker players to the Horseshoe Casino for a single tournament, with a set start and stop time, and a winner determined by a secret ballot of the seven players.”

Binion, posthumously described by Poker legend “Amarillo Slim” Preston as “either the gentlest bad guy or the baddest good guy you’d ever seen, passed away in 1989, but he was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame (founded by Binion’s Horseshoe Casino in 1979) in 1990.

Today, Binion’s creation has made him more immortal than ever, as the 2019 WSOP will included a celebratory gala and awards evening on Saturday, June 29.

There is also a “huge opening weekend event” to come, according to the event’s official website. The World Series of Poker also expects to award $200,000,000 at this year’s event, with a $5,000,000 guaranteed prize pool, which provides $1,000,000 to the winner.

In other words, after 50 years, the stakes are literally higher than ever. It’s never too early to buy in!

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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