New PartyPoker Partnership Expands Online Satellite Offerings To World Poker Tour Events

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The World Poker Tour and partypoker LIVE are global partners thanks to a new four-year deal announced on Wednesday. Seven joint events are on tap to be hosted in Canada and Europe with a prize pool guarantee topping off at  €3 million.

Montreal plays host to the first series held as part of the deal in October at the Playground Poker Club. The WPT premieres the first-ever trio of branded events to be held at a single stop. WPT500, WPTDeepStacks, and the WPT Main Tour are all represented at the festival.

Other properties named in the WPT release are Dusk Till Dawn in Nottingham, UK (a past Main Tour and WPT500 stop) and Casino Sochi in Sochi, Russia.

partypokerLIVE MILLIONS holds a strong base in all properties since the inception of the tour in April 2017.

WPT online qualifiers at partypoker

A key detail coming from Wednesday’s news is the availability of online satellites for all of the events involved in the partnership. Starting at only $.01, players can qualify on partypoker for all WPT Main Tour events. A minimum of 300 seats are going to be up for grabs through promotions run on partypoker.

Also now in the fold are partypoker LIVE Dollars, a form of currency won on partypoker that players are now able to transfer over to select WPT Main Tour events. LIVE Dollars can be won in satellites on partypoker and then be used to for event buy-ins, travel expenses including hotels, and visas. LIVE Dollar satellites run weekly with guarantees of over $1.1 million.

“The World Poker Tour is proud to partner with partypoker LIVE on this new, four-year global initiative,” WPT CEO Adam Pliska said. “The partnership allows the WPT to continue its dedication of bringing world-class poker to people’s lives, and we are honored to have John Duthie and the entire team at partypoker LIVE sharing in this value. Together with partypoker LIVE, we look forward to elevating the game for all levels.”

Exciting stops on the horizon

The announcement expands the availability of live poker events for all three regions included thus far.

Montreal is a strong ally with partypoker and the WPT. Last year, Playground hosted the first North American partypoker LIVE MILLIONS series and raised the stakes with their festival of events in the 2018 edition. World Poker Tour utilized Montreal in past seasons as one of the few properties to host two Main Tour events. The property comes full circle in being chosen to be the first to run all three WPT-branded tournaments in a single series.

The WPT500 runs from October 26-30 followed by the Main Event from October 29-November 4. WPTDeepStacks wraps the series from November 1-4. The Main Event is a C$5,300 buy-in. Day 1 play for the Main Event can be done online through partypoker on October 28. WPT500 also allows for online Day 1s on October 21, 22, and 23.

WPT returns to Dusk Till Dawn in April 2019 for the first time since Season IX when Iaron Lightbourne joined the Champions Club against a field of 450 runners.

Russia has hosted the WSOP Circuit and partypoker LIVE in the past. The eventual WPT event held in Sochi will be a first for the country when the tour arrives in April 2019.

Players proved last month their willingness to show up for a prestigious event. partypoker LIVE MILLIONS drew 692 entrants this month for a ₽300,000 ($4,400) buy-in. Attendees can forecast a similar buy-in for the WPT Main Tour event.

“The partnership with partypoker LIVE will bring WPT Main Tour stops in Europe to unprecedented heights,” WPT VP of Europe Hermance Blum said. “We are thrilled that two major operators can join forces again to bring the best poker experience to the players with each individual savoir-faire.”

Lead image courtesy of WPT/Flickr

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partypoker Unleashes Third Monster Series With Over $2 Million GTD

partypoker Monster Series

The popular “Monster Series” on partypoker is set to make a triumphant return from July 29-Aug. 6, 2018, with a staggering $2.1 million in guaranteed prize money spread over 171 tournaments.

This marks the third time that partypoker has hosted the low-to-mid stakes series with buy-ins ranging from $1.50 to $33.

partypoker utilizes a three-tier buy-in system for 56 events with a variety of different formats including 6-Max, Smooth, Deepstack and Hyper.

The entire series is very approachable for recreational players with buy-ins ranging from just $1.50 all the way up to $33.

Series culminates with $200k championship

This third edition of the Monster Series will conclude with a $33 buy-in championship event on Aug. 5.

Despite the relatively modest buy-in, the championship tournament will offer $200,000 in guaranteed prize money. It’s particularly impressive considering the series was designed with low to medium stakes players in mind.

“Players told us they were keen to compete in a series of tournaments that offered a range of low to mid-stakes buy-in levels,” said partypoker managing director Tom Waters.

“We continue to evaluate our major online events and hope the latest Monster Series continues to offer as much excitement as the first two series.”

There will also be medium ($11 buy-in) and micro ($3.30 buy-in) versions of the championship event, which truly accommodates bankrolls of all levels.

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Frequent flyers get a shot at MILLIONS Online

partypoker is giving frequent Monster players a little extra incentive to get in on the action.

Every player that plays 10 or more Monster events will be entered into a prize draw with MILLIONS Online satellite tickets up for grabs.

The MILLIONS Series is one of the biggest online events in the world and the last edition had a staggering $20 million in guaranteed prize money.

That’s not the only giveaway that partypoker is packing into the Monster schedule. Players looking to scoop a free entry will want to keep a close eye on partypoker’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

At random times throughout the week partypoker will be inviting players to log into their accounts for a 50% chance at winning Monster Series tournament ticket.

partypoker offers Monster Cash Games

More and more poker sites are starting to run cash-game promotions in conjunction with their major tournament series and partypoker is no exception.

partypoker will be running Cash Game Monster Hours daily throughout the entire series. Players will earn double cashback points on their cash game action from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday and between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Sundays (all times in CET).

Team partypoker Ambassador Natalia Breviglieri is a big fan of the Monster Series and the promotions surrounding it.

“I love these low to mid stakes series’ on partypoker, they offer a great series experience for players of all bankrolls,” she said.

“I’ll be playing as many of these as I can, and keep an eye on my twitter account: @N4talB, as I’ll be running some great promotions for followers throughout the Monster Series.”

The Monster Series was conceived in 2017 to provide a special series for low to mid-stakes players.

The overall guarantee of the series has actually been rolled back slightly for this edition (it was $2.7 million last summer) but the overall number of tournaments on the schedule has increased by nearly 40%.

It’s clear that partypoker is still tweaking the series to find out exactly what works for both players and the site.

partypoker.eu Launches €1m in Weekly MTTs for Spanish, French Players

Spanish and French flags

It’s a good time to be a poker player in Spain or France this week as yet another poker giant was able to finally offer a more international version of its software.

The long-awaited partypoker.eu launched on Monday with shared liquidity between Spain and France. That means much larger prize pools for players in both countries.

Prior to this week partypoker players in both countries were only able to against their fellow countryman. partypoker has effectively broken down those walls with the new .eu edition of its client.

The company has come out firing with €1 million in guaranteed prize pools in ongoing weekly MTTs.

New software for Spain, double MTTs for France

The new partypoker.eu software is a dramatic upgrade for players in Spain and France.

Poker players in Spain are in for the biggest upgrade. The country’s outdated partypoker.es software offered a scant amount of MTTs. It was also several generations behind the current partypoker software platform. That’s a distant memory as the new partypoker.eu is more in line with the global partypoker software.

French poker players will also benefit, however, with double the previous amount of MTTs.

“Today’s pokerstars.eu launch represents a milestone for both French and Spanish players, who can now enjoy greater variety, reduced rake and bigger and better games on the new .eu platform,” said partypoker managing director Tom Waters.

“We look forward to bringing our Spanish and French players together for the first time on our new and improved site.”

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New MTT schedule includes €600K+ in progressive KOs

The newly unified Spain and French partypoker offers a substantially upgraded MTT schedule with over €1 million in guaranteed prize pools every week and buy-ins ranging from €.55 all the way up to €250.

The new weekly schedule also includes more than €600K-GTD in partypoker’s signature “Progressive Knockout” events.

The new PKO events should be of particular interest to players considering partypoker recently scrapped the rake on the bounty element of the events. That means there’s plenty of rake-free cash to be won in each event after the initial buy-in.

Six-max tournaments will also play a big part in the new schedule with named events like “Shield”, “Predator”, “Monster”, and “Bazooka” running around the clock.

Iconic French poker player Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, who recently joined partypoker as an ambassador and representative for the EU market, was thrilled about the new partypoker site.

“I am extremely enthusiastic about joining partypoker to actively support their efforts to bring back the ‘Poker First’ mentality, live and online.”

“Our goal is to provide players and fans with an experience they deserve worldwide. partypoker will be aiming to bring their ambition, expertise and successful model to the .eu market with some big announcements coming soon.”

Portugal, Italy on the Horizon?

France, Spain, Italy, and Portugal all signed an agreement that would allow shared poker liquidity between them last year but the rollout has been relatively slow.

Currently PokerStars is the only company that offers shared liquidity between France, Spain, and Portugal. As partypoker has said in the past, that it will also attempt to incorporate all three countries into partypoker.eu.

partypoker currently doesn’t have license in the Portuguese market but that’s something the company is looking to rectify in the near future.

Italy might be a little tougher. partypoker is licensed in the country and operates an Italian-facing site but so far the country has been very reluctant to open its player pool to the rest of Europe.

Regardless, partypoker has some significant software upgrades to roll out for the French and Spanish markets over the coming months.

WSOP.com And PokerStarsNJ Setting Online Poker Records

old vinyl records

The dust is settling, and poker players in Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware are settling into their seats.

It has been three weeks since New Jersey joined Nevada and Delaware in the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement. The combined player pool is beginning to show its power.

The key stories from the last two weeks:

  • WSOP.com hosted the tournament with the largest prize pool in regulated U.S. poker history
  • PokerStarsNJ hosted the tournament with the most entries – even surpassing WSOP.com’s marquee event in the Coast to Coast Classic
  • Cash game traffic is soaring on WSOP.com and showing only a slight decline on PokerStarsNJ and partypokerNJ
  • Peak cash game traffic is showing a declining trend across the board

Now that you’ve been briefed let’s take a look back at the cash game and tournament trends for the two-week period ending May 20, 2018.

U.S. Regulated online poker operators

The major U.S. poker operators are:

Operator Network Provider Other Sites in the Network
WSOP.com 888 888poker
PokerStarsNJ PokerStars None
partypokerNJ partypoker Borgata Poker and PlayMGM-NJ

Pala Poker also operates in New Jersey on its own network. We do not include Pala Poker in this report because the traffic volume is low and doesn’t affect the latest online poker trends.

Major online poker tournaments summary

WSOP.com hosted the Coast 2 Coast Classic from May 11 – 20. Holding a big tournament series following the combining of player pools was a smart move by WSOP.com. It encouraged poker players that hadn’t done so to create their new accounts and get online.

The series came with over $1,000,000 in guarantees and included 32 events. All but one of the events made their guarantees. This is something even the most popular series over the recent past have failed to do.

The big story, though, is the Coast 2 Coast Main Event. Its $200,001 guarantee was the largest guarantee in regulated U.S. poker – by $1. What’s more impressive is that it shattered the historic guarantee by posting a massive prize pool of $245,642.

PokerStarsNJ and partypokerNJ both held their regular $45,000 and $40,000 guaranteed Sunday tournaments, respectively.

PokerStarsNJ switched things up by hosting a half-off version on Sunday, May 20. The tournament drew 583 entries for the largest tournament of the two week period.

WSOP.com met its guarantees for both weeks, while PokerStarsNJ and partypokerNJ did not meet them on May 13. Both sites rebounded and exceeded their guarantees on Sunday, May 20.

Tournament data for Sunday, May 13.

Tournament Entries Guarantee Prize Pool Overlay
WSOP $320 Coast 2 Coast Event #7 – $100,000 NLH 502 $100,000 $150,600 N/A
PokerStarsNJ $200 Sunday Special, $45,000 Guaranteed 216 $45,000 $38,200 $6,800
partypokerNJ $215 Sunday $40,000 Guaranteed NLH 175 $40,000 $35,000 $5,000

Tournament data for Sunday, May 20.

Tournament Entries Guarantee Prize Pool Difference
WSOP $500 Coast 2 Coast Event #29 – $200,001 NLH Main Event 526 $200,001 $245,642 $45,641
PokerStarsNJ $100 Half-Price Sunday Special, $45,000 Guaranteed 583 $45,000 $53,519 $8,519
partypokerNJ $215 Sunday $40,000 Guaranteed NLH 214 $40,000 $42,800 $2,800

Average cash game and peak traffic summary

Shared liquidity has only had a small impact on the cash game seven-day rolling average traffic numbers.

Before the merging of player pools, WSOP.com in Nevada and Delaware averaged 135 cash game players. New Jersey averaged 75 on the network. Since the launch, the combined number is 240. That number equals about 30 additional players on average logging into the site.

PokerStarsNJ and partypokerNJ have remained relatively flat post-liquidity with a seven-day rolling average of 85 and 50 cash game players, respectively. PokerStarsNJ posted a decline of about five players, while partypokerNJ posted a decrease of 10.

The big question at the beginning of the month was how a combined player pool on WSOP.com would affect PokerStarsNJ and partypokerNJ. Well, it seems like it is business as usual.

Peak traffic seems to be struggling a bit more than the average traffic numbers. There is a declining trend among all three operators following the merging of player pools.

WSOP.com’s negative trend line is most likely due to low peak numbers on May 18 and 19.

Nevada hosted Electric Daisy Carnival which historically draws players away from the tables. Additionally, the Las Vegas Knights were busy fighting for their spot in the Stanley Cup Finals. These events can easily explain the significant drop in peak traffic for those days.

Surprisingly, partypokerNJ had the best trend line of the bunch. Of course, it is a hollow victory with two outlier days for WSOP.com and two missing days of data for PokerStarsNJ.

Factors that will likely impact U.S. online poker in the coming weeks

In one week, crowds of poker players from around the world will descend on the Las Vegas desert for the 2018 World Series of Poker.

Four online bracelet events, online satellites, and the ability to play live and online at the same time will likely drive online traffic numbers higher for WSOP.com over the coming months.

Expect business as usual for PokerStarsNJ or partypokerNJ. It is unlikely for the sites to try and compete with WSOP.com during this time.

We will be reporting again on the U.S. online poker landscape on June 5.

The first online bracelet will be awarded to a combined player pool, and the WSOP will have a week’s worth tournaments under its belt.

partypoker POWERFEST Is Fully Charged With $40m In Guarantees

rows of batteries

partypoker appears to be taking a shot at the heavyweight title with its upcoming POWERFEST online series.

The online poker giant released a schedule for the series this week with a staggering $40 million in guaranteed prize money spread across 366 different events. It’s the biggest POKERFEST that partypoker has ever run.

The series will run for two weeks from May 6-20, 2018, but online satellites have already started on partypoker. Qualifiers start at just $1.10.

Serious poker players will have their hands full with 17 championship events and a total of 58 high roller or super roller tournaments.

It’s safe to say there is plenty of money to be won with a total of 13 events offering guaranteed prize pools of $1 million or more.

The series will culminate with seven championship events on Sunday with nearly $4 million in combined prize pools.

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Something for everyone with Micro, Low, Mid, High buy-ins

As usual, POWERFEST will offer a variety of different buy-in levels thanks to its Micro, Low, Mid, and High formats.

Buy-ins at the Micro level start at just $1.10 but shoot all the way up to $216 for the High buy-in events. That’s not even including the High Rollers and Super Rollers that top out at a sky-high $25,500.

The series will also feature a wide variety of games with No-Limit Hold’em, PLO, and PLO8. There will also be a collection of the ever-popular Progressive Knockout events.

Organizers for this edition of POWERFEST focused on giving players a diverse selection of tournaments to play.

partypoker ambassador Patrick Leonard was heavily involved with creating the schedule. He’s happy with where the series ended up:

“There is a lot of consistent logic throughout giving the most varied, exciting and fun POWERFEST schedule since partypoker’s resurrection a few years ago.”

“There are more 6-Max events, more PLO, more high rollers but also buy-ins for all bankrolls and most importantly lots of chances of glory. I don’t think I’ll take a day off over the two weeks.”

Of course, the majority of the series will still take place in familiar Hold’em with No-Limit events taking place pretty much around the clock.

Massive $25K Super High Roller returns

partypoker shook up the online world last year when it introduced a massive $25,000 super high roller for the May 2017 edition of POWERFEST.

The $2 million guaranteed tournament was a first for partypoker. All registration fees went towards charity. partypoker also chipped in an extra $50,000, thanks to the field exceeding 100 entries.

In the end, partypoker smashed the guarantee with 129 entries, creating a prize pool of $3.2 million.

Online player juanpardo99 got through a very tough final table to walk away with $660,067 for first place. That figure was taking a two-way chop into account as well. partypoker’s own Sam Trickett and Joao Simao featured prominently at that final table, finishing eighth and fifth respectively.

The very next edition of POWERFEST, which took place in September 2017, saw Ben Tollerene defeat fellow online legend Viktor “Isildur1” Blom heads-up to win the second POWERFEST $25K for $846,722.

After a brief hiatus from the smaller POWERFEST in early 2018, the $25,000 buy-in SHR will make a triumphant return in the upcoming series. The blockbuster tournament will take place on May 17.

If previous editions are any indication then this tournament will be a must-watch for poker fans and a must-play for elite players with deep wallets.