The 2020 World Series of Poker may be in jeopardy, but the series did make a major announcement on Wednesday. It wasn’t a cancellation or postponement however. The series will see its popular WSOP Super Circuit Online Series debut on the global-facing GGPoker Network.
The series will feature hundreds of events with WSOP Circuit rings awarded in 18 headlining tournaments. Events kick off in early May and is expected to run three weeks. A full tournament schedule will be announced later.
“We’re thrilled to partner with an operator on the rise who is both aggressive and passionate about growing poker engagement around the world,” WSOP executive director Ty Stewart said in a news release.
“It was unfortunate that we were forced to cancel so many offline WSOP Circuit events this spring, but with vast reach GGPoker plans to dwarf the prize pools of the suspended events all at once in one truly Super WSOP Circuit.”
Details on GGPoker/WSOP Super Circuit Online
The partnership becomes the latest in the WSOP Circuit’s expansion online. The launch of the WSOP Super Circuit Online Series is its latest evolution. The move means more players will get in on the action from the safety of their own homes during the Coronavirus pandemic.
As a growing international site with significant reach, the new GGPoker series could easily crush those numbers. The site regularly ranks as one of the top five in the world in terms of traffic, according to statistics from PokerScout.com.
Along with side events and circuit ring tournaments, players can also qualify for events via satellites throughout the series. The Super Circuit also includes two entries to the WSOP Global Casino Championship.
That annual bracelet event features a $1 million guaranteed prize pool. The Super Series will award one entry to the Main Event winner and one to the series points leader.
“A GGPoker and WSOP partnership brings together two like-minded global organizations,” said head of GGPoker Jean-Christophe Antoine, “and I can’t wait to see GGPoker players competing for WSOP Circuit rings online.”
Daniel Negreanu comments on new deal
For GGPoker, the addition of a major WSOP event offers some extra cachet to the site when it’s in a growth stage. GG made news in November by signing Daniel Negreanu as a brand ambassador.
“The WSOP is the most prestigious brand in poker dating back to 1970,” the longtime pro and six-time WSOP bracelet winner told USPoker. “Any time you can be in partnership with the WSOP that’s a great opportunity and I was thrilled to see GGPoker partner with them.
“How does this help the WSOP? Well, I strongly believe that GGPoker offers the best software and player experience you will find anywhere online. Especially the mobile client which is in a league of its own.”
Could the deal with WSOP produce something more long term? Negreanu believes its a start and that could be a possibility.
“GGPoker is becoming a major player and growing rapidly, so I’m excited to see that continue,” he says. “Relationship building is an important step for any company and hopefully this is just the first step toward even more partnerships in the future.”
Negreanu, who lives in Las Vegas, says he’s been playing more online in recent weeks like many players around the world.
“At this point, I think anything is possible,” Negreanu says. “GGPoker is expanding quickly by adding new ambassadors, putting up aggressive guarantees, and I think sponsoring existing live events is likely in the cards.”
New possibilities for WSOP, GGPoker
Any moves toward a mostly online series in the US could possibly be complemented by bracelet events internationally. That’s all speculation at this point, but an announcement on the WSOP in Las Vegas is expected by next week.
“It’s slightly too soon for any comments [on the series],” Stewart told USPoker, “but certainly should there be a void in live events, partnering for online with a leading international operator or operators to combine with domestic offerings would be a sound approach.”
Internationally, 888 is the only officially WSOP-licensed site offering online qualifiers to the Main Event. 888 also offers qualifiers to its own WSOP sponsored tournament, the $888 Crazy Eights.
The new deal has the WSOP branching out even more internationally.
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