New Jersey will get a full dose of poker tournament action from PokerStars this fall, both live and online.
First up, NJCOOP
PokerStars will be holding its first New Jersey Championship of Online Poker, modeled after the tournament series it holds in the rest of the world.
Details are scant on the series, so far, other than the dates in October, leading up to the live tourney festival:
— Jennifer Shahade (@JenShahade) August 26, 2016
What will NJCOOP look like? For the NJ Spring Championship of Online Poker, PokerStars guaranteed $1 million, so it seems fair to guess that it will at least match that figure.
Of course, that tournament series came soon after PokerStars’ NJ launch in March. And it came before PokerStars began ceding back some of its initial market share to the other networks in NJ: PartyPoker / Borgata and WSOP / 888.
The series will likely take some of its cues from the World Championship of Poker held in September, albeit tailored to the smaller NJ market.
Next up, PokerStars NJ Festival
Right at the end of the online series, a live series will take place at Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City from October 29-November 6.
The NJ event will be a part of the recently launched rebrand of PokerStars’ live tournaments.
There will be more than 50 tourneys held as part of the series (full list here), but here are the highlights:
- PokerStars Cup – October 30-31 ($300+$40)
- PokerStars Festival Main Event – November 1-5 ($1,000+$100)
- PokerStars Festival National High Roller – November 4-5 ($2,000 + $200)
- PokerStars Open – November 4-6 ($200+$30)
Other live PokerStars events in NJ
It’s not just poker that PokerStars is bringing New Jersey. Visitors can also check out the StarsFun Skills Zone from October 31-November 4. That includes:
- Miniature Golf Hole-in-One Progressive (cash prizes)
- Hoops Fever Progressive (cash prizes)
- Pinball Progressive(cash prizes)
- Table tennis
- Air hockey
There will also be PokerStars Casino Festival events, which are a new feature of the online poker site’s live festivals. Those events will feature “an innovative take on traditional blackjack, roulette, video poker and slot tournaments.”
PokerStars pro Jason Somerville will be on hand as well, hosting mixed game events on Nov. 5, as well as a poker seminar and a Q&A session with fans. Also on that Saturday, reality TV stars Tyson Apostol and ‘Boston Rob ’ Mariano, will take part in a $340 buy-in Survivor ‘Immunity’ tournament.
What’s it all mean for NJ poker?
PokerStars will be trying to get some of its groove back in NJ revenue-wise, and a big tournament series will accomplish that, at least in the short term.
But the big guarantees from NJSCOOP (big, at least in New Jersey terms) didn’t translate into holding onto liquidity long-term.
The bigger impact could be on Resorts, which has been trying to reinvent itself and attract a younger demographic.
In the end, PokerStars is obviously trying to make a big push in its first regulated US online poker market. How much liquidity and longevity that push generates in the NJ market remains to be seen.
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