26 events, 36 days
With the 2021 World Series of Poker set to begin in less than three weeks, PokerGO has announced its live streaming schedule for the year’s most anticipated poker festival. Of the 88 total events in this year’s WSOP, PokerGO will broadcast 26 of them.
we look forward to bringing the thrill of winning gold bracelets to millions of poker fans around the world”
“The WSOP represents the most exciting time on the poker calendar, and we look forward to bringing the thrill of winning gold bracelets to millions of poker fans around the world,” said Poker Hall of Famer, PokerGO president, and televised poker trailblazer Mori Eskandani.
In all, PokerGO will stream 36 days of poker action, starting with Event #6: $25,000 No-Limit Hold’em High Roller on October 6. Though most of the coverage will feature No-Limit Hold’em tournaments, PokerGO’s mix of events hearkens back to the early poker boom days when fans could see a variety of different game types on television. Included the streaming schedule are Seven Card Stud, H.O.R.S.E, Short Deck, Pot-Limit Omaha, 2-7 Lowball, Fixed-Limit Hold’em, and 8-Game Mix.
The entire World Series of Poker runs September 30 through November 23 at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
Every single day of the Main Event
Among the highlights of PokerGO’s coverage is, of course, the $10,000 Main Event. This is the first time that the Main Event will be live streamed from the opening “shuffle up and deal” to the final hand. In previous years, it has either been exclusively on television (ESPN’s 34-year run as the WSOP’s television broadcast partner ends this year, as the WSOP is now on the CBS Sports Network) or split in some way between online streaming and taped/live television coverage.
Though the CBS Sports Network will show 15 hours of the WSOP Main Event, its coverage will complement PokerGO’s, rather than the two outlets taking different days of the tournament.
Other events of interest on PokerGO include the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, the $1,979 Poker Hall of Fame Bounty tournament, the $1,000 Ladies Championship, and the $250,000 No-Limit Hold’em Super High Roller.
Pandemic requiring everyone to be flexible
In any normal year, the World Series of Poker would have been completed about two months ago. But of course, because of the pandemic, this is not a normal year. Organizers canceled the WSOP last year, eventually launching the WSOP Online and a hybrid live/online Main Event later in the year. For 2021, they pushed the Las Vegas-based WSOP to the fall to give more time to implement proper health and safety measures and in the hopes that the COVID-19 situation would ease.
But with a massive surge in cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in the United States, that situation remains fluid. In the second week of August, poker media honcho Kevin Mathers made the poker public aware of 2021 World Series of Poker Rule #115, which said that if a player is exposed to someone who tests positive for COVID-19, they can be removed from the tournament.
After an uproar from the poker community, the WSOP clarified that if a player is vaccinated, they will not be disqualified upon exposure as long as they are asymptomatic.
Then, late last month, the WSOP took it a step further and announced that all attendees must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination. Another addendum followed, stating that WSOP Team Members do not need to be vaccinated, though they are strongly encouraged to do so.
Since vaccines are now required at the WSOP, masks are optional at the tables.
This week, the WSOP said that because of Nevada Emergency Directive 050, which expanded exceptions for the state’s indoor mask mandate, players will not have to wear protective face masks at the tables. Among the requirements included in the exemption is a vaccine mandate for conventions that wish to permit attendees to go unmasked. Since vaccines are now required at the WSOP, masks are optional at the tables. Once players step away from the table, they must put on a mask.