Since the birth of regulated online poker in New Jersey back in November 2013, all of the Atlantic City casinos entering the online poker market put forth a good marketing effort. Many sites have offered promotions to attract customers to their websites. Offering new players free money to try them out without a deposit required was one way to get the ball rolling.
Geo-locating was an issue early on. It has since improved and will continue to get better as time passes.
Here are some of the promotions and guaranteed tournaments offered by the NJ online poker websites.
Both Party Poker NJ and Borgata Poker, who are partners in the New Jersey market, use the same software and share cash game tables.
Borgata and Party Poker offer a $200 buy in tournament on Sundays which has a guaranteed prize pool of $50,000. It is the largest guaranteed tournament in the New Jersey online poker market. The top prize is usually more then $7,000. With the combined player pools of both Party Poker and Borgata, this tournament meets the guarantee the majority of the time. Borgata and Party Poker also offer qualifiers into live WPT Borgata events.
WSOP is one of the most well know and respected names in poker. The brand entered the New Jersey market through its parent company Caesars Entertainment. The opening promotion was the New Jersey Online Championship of Poker. It started on January 19 and runs through February 2. Each night of the week there was an event with guaranteed prize pools ranging from $25k up to $50k.
Here is a break down of the events offered.
- The first event which was a $215 buy in with a $50k guarantee prize pool had 108 runners with an overlay of $5,800. First place paying out $14,000.
- The $25k guarantee Pot Limit Omaha event had 107 runners and a $1,000 overlay. First place was $7,000.
- The third event actually went over the guarantee. It was a $215 buy in $30k guarantee, attracting 224 runners. Top prize was $11,882.
- Event 4 was a $109 buy in NLHE event with a $25k guarantee prize pool that had 348 runners, shattering the guarantee. The prize pool ended up being $34,800 with first paying out $$8,874.
- Event 5 had a $215 buy in with a $50k guarantee prize pool. It had 207 runners generating a prize pool of $41,400. An overlay of $8,600 was paid by WSOP.com. First place took home $13,250.
- The Saturday event was a $70k guarantee with a buy in of $109. This tournament had a whopping 523 runners. But it fell short of the guarantee by $17,000. First place paid $16,800.
- The main event for the WSOP New Jersey online championship had an enormous prize pool of $250,000. The buy in was $530 which attracted 328 runners leaving an $86,000 overlay. Players were getting a ton of value for this tournament. The top prize was an outstanding $63,750.
There is still a $250k free roll to be held on February 2nd for players who bought into any of the above events. Many players in the online forums felt this series was a success and would like to see more online series like this every quarter. In the future they will run satellites for the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas as well as circuit event that run throughout the year.
The company also has a partnership with Caesars that ensured initial access to the New Jersey online poker market. 888 was the first online poker website in New Jersey to advertise on billboards. These featured UFC champion George St. Pierre, the face of 888.
Their initial promotion was to offer tickets to a daily $10,000 free roll which attracted 1,000+ players. Currently, they are running a 24/7 freeroll promotion where players receive random emails containing 24 tickets that must be used in a 24-hour time frame.
The freerolls offer a combined $50,000 prize pools. They also run a weekly $10,000 guarantee tournament that has a buy in of $200. This tournament has an avg of 40-50 runners, which usually leads to some overlays.
Ultimate Poker, the first legal and regulated online poker website in the Nevada market, also entered New Jersey. They are running a nightly $5,000 guarantee tournament with a buy in of $50. The unique twist to this tournament is the winner not only receives the top prize, which is an average of $1,500+, but also tickets to see UFC 169 on February 1st. There are an average of 60-70 players that play in this nightly tournament. The frequent overlay increases its overall value.
The weekly Sunday tournament is a $100 buy in with a $20,000 guarantee averages about 100 entries. This produces an average overlay of $10,000.
As you can see, there is plenty of action in the online poker world in New Jersey. Only being live close to 3 months, the promotions and tournament offerings are only going to get better as players voice opinions and suggestions to all of the companies involved.