The first of two opening rounds of the $3,500 WPT Seminole Rock and Roll Open is taking place in Hollywood, Florida. [Image: WPT via Flickr]
Leftovers have to wait for Thanksgiving
There are two factions of people in the United States the day after Thanksgiving: those who need a day to recover from bingeing at the night before’s feast and those who get up early and try to get the best Black Friday deals. Hundreds of poker players will form a third group today, though, as they cozy up at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida for the World Poker Tour’s 2022 (WPT) Seminole Rock and Roll Poker Open (RRPO) tournament event.
The $3,500 Membership Course ($3,200 for participation plus $300 registration fee plus $100 for staff) includes two trips for the first day, one on November 25 and one on November 26. The survivors of those two days will be combined for the second day on Sunday, November 27. Days 3 and 4 are Monday and Tuesday, respectively, with the final table run on Wednesday, November 30, broadcast live on WPT.com.
The Tournament event allows for unlimited re-entry during each of the two starting journeys up to the start of Level 9. Day 1 journeys have levels that are 60 minutes long and will end after Level 10. As journeys start at 11am ET, that means, when you factor in rest periods, they will end The re-entry period is around 9 p.m. Players may register on Day 1B if they are eliminated on Day 1A.
2021 RRPO records shattered
Last year’s WPT Seminole Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open was a huge success, as poker players got a live tournament fix after not being able to in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The total of 1,566 entries for the championship event shattered the previous record of 988, set in 2019.
The tournament had no problem exceeding the $2 million guarantee, finishing with a prize pool of just over $5 million.
With better weather in the fall and winter than Atlantic City and increased commitment to poker, Florida, the Seminole Hard Rock in particular has become a popular poker destination on the East Coast. The RRPO Championship has seen a steady increase in the number of entries over the past several years.
And it wasn’t just the championship event that set records. The first event of the 31-tournament poker festival, the $400 Deep Stack No-Limit Hold’em, attracted 6,196 entries, making it the largest live poker tournament stadium in Florida history. The previous record was 5,018 entries, set in the 2016 RRPO.
WPT Season Ends
With the WPT Seminole Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open wrapping up at the end of the month, there’s one more stop for the current World Poker Tour season: the WPT World Series at Wynn Las Vegas. Starting December 1, the festival features tournaments – or tournament rides – every day for three weeks.
The biggest collateral in the history of live poker tournaments
The highlight is the tournament of the same name, the $10,400 WPT World Championship, scheduled for December 12-18. The World Poker Tour and Wynn will work the round, guaranteeing a $15 million prize pool, the largest guarantee in the history of live poker tournaments.
Naturally, this will be the players’ last chance to make a move in the WPT Player of the Year standings. Steve Buckner is the current leader with 2,150 points, thanks to four money this season and two finals tables. He earned just over $1 million of that money, though none of it came from the WPT title.
Buckner’s closest competitor is Ray Kartomi who has 1,700 points. After him, there are many players within 1400 points. Finalist Player of the Year will receive a $15,000 WPT Passport; Second and third places will receive a WPT passport worth $10,000 and $5,000, respectively.