ESPN, Poker Central Announce 2020 WSOP Live Broadcast Schedule

  • ESPN, Poker Central team up for fourth year
  • ESPN will focus on Main Event, PokerGO will fill in gaps with streaming
  • PokerGO will also stream preliminary events
  • Three-day 2020 WSOP Main Event final table on ESPN, ESPN2
ESPN microphone
ESPN and Poker Central have announced the live TV broadcast schedule for the 2020 WSOP Main Event, along with further streaming plans for the Series. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Relationship continues

ESPN and Poker Central have announced the broadcast schedule for the 2020 World Series of Poker. This is the fourth year the two media outlets will partner to provide live coverage for the WSOP.

“ESPN’s yearly World Series of Poker coverage has proven to be an annual favorite with our poker fans,” said Rob Temple, ESPN’s senior vice president of programming and acquisitions. “Through our partnership with Poker Central, we look forward to another season of extensive broadcast coverage of the most popular poker event on earth.”

fourth year the two media outlets will partner to provide live coverage for the WSOP

ESPN’s portion of the coverage will be broadcast on its two largest cable channels, ESPN and ESPN2, with replays online. Poker Central will stream its coverage on PokerGO, its subscription streaming service.

ESPN handles TV, PokerGO handles streaming

Per the agreement, ESPN and Poker Central will telecast “at least” 40 hours of live World Series of Poker coverage. In addition, they will produce another 90 hours of “originally produced” episodes. The latter are likely prepackaged WSOP episodes that will be shown later in the year with away-from-the-table features like player interviews and special interest pieces.

Most, if not all, of the 2020 WSOP Main Event will be covered by the two outlets. ESPN will focus on live television broadcasts of the tournament, while Poker Central will stream portions of the Main Event via PokerGO that ESPN does not handle. PokerGO will also stream live coverage of other events during the summer.

Last year, Poker Central split WSOP streaming rights with CBS All Access, CBS’s young, paid streaming service. PokerGO had 41 days of Series access, including much of the Main Event, while CBS All Access grabbed the rights to stream 25 days of the 2019 WSOP.

PokerGO costs $10 per month or $99 for a full year.

ESPN has the final table

ESPN will air the 2020 WSOP Main Event for anywhere from two to five-and-a-half hours every day of the tournament, July 1 through July 14. July 2 will feature split coverage, with two hours on ESPN and the next two hours on ESPN2.

The final table, as has been the case for years now, is played over the course of three days. The first day (Day 8 of the Main Event), will be on July 12 and will see the field trimmed from nine to six players. The next day will narrow the field to three. Both of the first two final table broadcasts will begin at 10:00pm ET on ESPN2 and will run until play ends.

ESPN’s flagship channel will show the culmination of the 2020 WSOP Main Event final table on July 14 starting at 9:00pm ET.

Complete streaming schedules will be published as the 2020 WSOP draws near.